Landscape-scale drivers of pollinator communities may depend on land-use configuration

Mark A.K. Gillespie, Mathilde Baude, Jacobus Biesmeijer, Nigel Boatman, Giles E. Budge, Andrew Crowe, Nancy Davies, Rebecca Evans, Jane Memmott, R. Daniel Morton, Ellen Moss, Mark Murphy, Stephane Pietravalle, Simon G. Potts, Stuart P.M. Roberts, Clare Rowland, Deepa Senapathi, Simon M. Smart, Claire Wood, William E. Kunin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Research into pollinators in managed landscapes has recently combined approaches of pollination ecology and landscape ecology, because key stressors are likely to interact across wide areas.While laboratory and field experiments are valuable for furthering understanding, studies are required to investigate the interacting drivers of pollinator health and diversity across a broader range of landscapes and a wider array of taxa. Here, we use a network of 96 study landscapes in six topographically diverse regions of Britain, to test the combined importance of honeybee density, insecticide loadings, floral resource availability and habitat diversity to pollinator communities. We also explore the interactions between these drivers and the cover and proximity of semi-natural habitat. We found that among our four drivers, only honeybee density was positively related to wild pollinator abundance and diversity, and the positive association between abundance and floral resources depended on insecticide loadings and habitat diversity. By contrast, our exploratory models including habitat compositionmetrics revealed a complex suite of interactive effects. These results demonstrate that improving pollinator community composition and health is unlikely to be achieved with general resource enhancements only. Rather, local land-use context should be considered in fine-tuning pollinator management and conservation. This article is part of the theme issue 'Natural processes influencing pollinator health: From chemistry to landscapes'.

Original languageEnglish
Article number20210172
JournalPhilosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Issue number1853
Publication statusPublished - 21 Feb 2022


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