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Species distribution models for crop pollination: a modelling framework applied to Great Britain

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Giles Budge, Dr Andrew Crowe

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


Abstract

Insect pollination benefits over three quarters of the world's major crops. There is growing concern that observed declines in pollinators may impact on production and revenues from animal pollinated crops. Knowing the distribution of pollinators is therefore crucial for estimating their availability to pollinate crops; however, in general, we have an incomplete knowledge of where these pollinators occur. We propose a method to predict geographical patterns of pollination service to crops, novel in two elements: the use of pollinator records rather than expert knowledge to predict pollinator occurrence, and the inclusion of the managed pollinator supply. We integrated a maximum entropy species distribution model (SDM) with an existing pollination service model (PSM) to derive the availability of pollinators for crop pollination. We used nation-wide records of wild and managed pollinators (honey bees) as well as agricultural data from Great Britain. We first calibrated the SDM on a representative sample of bee and hoverfly crop pollinator species, evaluating the effects of different settings on model performance and on its capacity to identify the most important predictors. The importance of the different predictors was better resolved by SDM derived from simpler functions, with consistent results for bees and hoverflies. We then used the species distributions from the calibrated model to predict pollination service of wild and managed pollinators, using field beans as a test case. The PSM allowed us to spatially characterize the contribution of wild and managed pollinators and also identify areas potentially vulnerable to low pollination service provision, which can help direct local scale interventions. This approach can be extended to investigate geographical mismatches between crop pollination demand and the availability of pollinators, resulting from environmental change or policy scenarios.


Publication metadata

Author(s): Polce C, Termansen M, Aguirre-GutiƩrrez J, Boatman ND, Budge GE, Crowe A, Garratt MP, Pietravalle S, Potts SG, Ramirez JA, Somerwill KE, Biesmeijer JC

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: PLoS ONE

Year: 2013

Volume: 8

Issue: 10

Online publication date: 14/10/2013

Date deposited: 22/03/2019

ISSN (electronic): 1932-6203

Publisher: Public Library of Science

URL: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0076308

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0076308


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