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Abstract Detail

Conservation Biology

Handley, Joy [1], Crawford, Madison [1], Tronstad, Lusha [1].

Pollination mechanisms of three rare plant species.

Rare plants often have specialized pollinators and the loss of such pollinators could result in poor seed production. We conducted pollination studies on three endemic plants with small ranges (Yermo xanthocephalus, Trifolium barnebyi, and Artemisia simplex). We performed seed-set studies, trapped pollinators, and examined pollen carried by bees. We measured seed production on bagged flowers which measured self-pollination, open flowers which estimated seeds produced under ambient conditions, and hand-pollinated flowers to estimate seeds produced when pollen was in excess. We collected pollinators to estimate which insects are pollinating these rare plants. Since it is unknown whether A. simplex is insect or wind pollinated, we also collected aerial pollen in populations of this species. Self-pollination was absent or low in all species and different factors limited the seeds produced by each plant. Seed viability was extremely low in Yermo xanthocephalus; however, pollinators did not appear to limit seed production. Trifolium barnbeyi is one of the first plants to bloom in the spring and the number of seeds produced was related to the number of pollinators captured. The genus Artemisia are typically wind pollinated but the showy flower of A. simplex leads us to investigate what mechanisms pollinate this plant. Artemisia simplex is likely pollinated by both wind and insect pollinators. Studying the pollination of rare plants can help managers understand what limits such species.

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1 - University of Wyoming, Wyoming Natural Diversity Database, 1000 E University Ave, Laramie, WY, 82071, USA

rare plant
plant-pollinator interactions
seed viability test

Presentation Type: Poster
Session: P1, Conservation Biology Posters
Location: Virtual/Virtual
Date: Monday, July 19th, 2021
Time: 5:00 PM(EDT)
Number: P1CB005
Abstract ID:386
Candidate for Awards:None

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