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Abundance patterns during 6-7 years and orchid visitation were determined for 51 species of the 57 local euglossine bees. Male bees were counted at 3 chemical attractants presented in the same manner each month. Sites were separated by 75 km but included wet Atlantic forest at 500 m elevation, moist forest at 180 m near Barro Colorado Island, and cloud(More)
Colony foraging activity of four Melipona species (Apidae: Meliponinae, tribe Meliponini) was studied during the dry season, when many plants flower in central Panama. The efficiency of sucrose solution uptake by Melipona was compared to that of domesticated European Apis mellifera. Dynamics of nectar foraging were also recorded for 3 of the Melipona(More)
Pollination deficits in agricultural and natural systems are suggestive of large reductions in pollinator populations. However, actual declines are difficult to demonstrate using census data. Here, we show census data to be misleading because many abundant pollinators exhibit high levels of production of sterile diploid males usually found only in small(More)
Euglossine bees (Apidae; Euglossini) exclusively pollinate hundreds of orchid species and comprise up to 25% of bee species richness in neotropical rainforests. As one of the first studies of comparative phylogeography in a neotropical insect group, we performed a mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA)-based analysis of 14 euglossine species represented by populations(More)
Most eukaryotic organisms are arthropods. Yet, their diversity in rich terrestrial ecosystems is still unknown. Here we produce tangible estimates of the total species richness of arthropods in a tropical rainforest. Using a comprehensive range of structured protocols, we sampled the phylogenetic breadth of arthropod taxa from the soil to the forest canopy(More)
This study investigates the recruitment communication mechanisms of a stingless bee, Melipona panamica, whose foragers can evidently communicate the three-dimensional location of a good food source. To determine if the bees communicate location information inside or outside the nest, we conducted removal experiments by training marked foragers to one of two(More)
The widely accepted idea that bees fuel flight through the oxidation of carbohydrate is based on studies of only a few species. We tested this hypothesis as part of our research program to investigate the size-dependence of flight energetics in Panamanian orchid bees. We succeeded in measuring rates of O(2) consumption and CO(2) production in vivo during(More)
Neotropical orchid bees (Euglossini) are often cited as classic examples of trapline-foragers with potentially extensive foraging ranges. If long-distance movements are habitual, rare plants in widely scattered locations may benefit from euglossine pollination services. Here we report the first successful use of micro radio telemetry to track the movement(More)
Recently there has been considerable concern about declines in bee communities in agricultural and natural habitats. The value of pollination to agriculture, provided primarily by bees, is >$200 billion/year worldwide, and in natural ecosystems it is thought to be even greater. However, no monitoring program exists to accurately detect declines in abundance(More)