Creation and management of pollen and nectar habitats on farmland

Pywell, R. F. ORCID:; Meek, W. R.; Hulmes, L.; Nowakowski, M.. 2010 Creation and management of pollen and nectar habitats on farmland. In: AAB 100. Agri-environment schemes - what have they achieved and where do we go from here? Association of Applied Biologists, 369-374. (Aspects of Applied Biology, 100).

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Intensive agriculture has contributed to serious declines in abundance and diversity of pollinating insects. The agri-environment schemes (AES) aim to conserve and enhance the pollination service to crops and wildflowers by providing habitats rich in pollen and nectar. Research suggests that current management prescriptions are failing to provide habitats of sufficient quality and longevity. We investigated the performance of 10 low cost seed mixtures over 3 years. The seed mixtures comprised legume species sown with grasses of differing competitive ability. The typical practice of sowing tall and competitive grass species significantly reduced cover of legume species over time. Persistence of legumes was significantly better in mixtures sown either without grasses, or with fine-leaved grasses. Winter application of graminicide in year 3 resulted in reduced competition from grasses, and an increased cover of sown forbs and undesirable weed species. This resulted in significantly a higher abundance and diversity of bumblebee species.

Item Type: Publication - Book Section
Programmes: CEH Topics & Objectives 2009 - 2012 > Biodiversity > BD Topic 3 - Managing Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in a Changing Environment > BD - 3.2 - Develop and test practical measures to ameliorate the effects ...
UKCEH and CEH Sections/Science Areas: Pywell
Additional Keywords: Pollination service, graminicide, bumblebees, butterflies, agri-environment schemes
NORA Subject Terms: Agriculture and Soil Science
Ecology and Environment
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Date made live: 29 Apr 2010 10:19 +0 (UTC)

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