FORAGING BEHAVIOUR AND POLLINATION EFFICIENCY OF FLORAL VISITORS ON EGYPTIAN CLOVER, TRIFOLIUM ALEXANDRINUM L.
M. K. JAT, O. P. CHAUDHARY AND A. S. TETARWAL*
Department of Entomology,
CCS, Haryana Agricultural University,
Hisar, 125004, Haryana (India)
*(e-mail : nitharwal84@gmail.com)
(Received : 3 January 2017; Accepted : 30 January 2017)

SUMMARY

The foraging behaviour and pollination efficiency of floral visitors on Egyptian clover, Trifolium
alexandrinum was conducted at Forage Section, Department of Genetics and Plant Breeding, CCS, Haryana Agricultural University, Hisar during 2012 and 2013. The maximum foraging rate was recorded in N+P (nectar+pollen) foragers of Apis dorsata (7.2 flowers/min.), P (pollen) forager of Apis florea (7.2) and Apis mellifera (7.1) followed by pollen (6.3), least in nectar forager of A. dorsata (5.1) and A. mellifera (5.5). The maximum foraging speed was recorded in nectar forager A. dorsata (22.4 seconds/flower) followed by its pollen foragers (19.0). The A. mellifera foragers were recorded with minimum foraging speed for nectar+pollen (4.6 seconds/flower), pollen (4.9) and nectar (7.4). The larger bodied A. dorsata carried the maximum loose pollen grains (LPG) on their body (79,625) while the smallest species A. florea had minimum capacity (36,375) and the medium sized A. mellifera was recorded with intermediate capacity (73,250). On the basis of relative pollination efficiency (RPE), A. dorsata was the most efficient pollinators (16.4) of T. alexandrinum flowers followed by the pollen foragers (13.3).

Key words: Pollination efficiency, pollination index, foraging behaviour, Egyptian clover

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