Pollination

Apis-cerana-beePollination is the transfer of pollen from the anthers of a flower to the stigma of the same or of another flower, resulting in fertilization and subsequent development of seeds and hence, propagation of the species. A pollinator facilitates the process of pollination and in a tropical agro-forest ecology, indigenous pollinators are key to ensuring security of food, livestock fodder, medicines and livelihoods. More than 69% of plants (including wild edibles and agriculture crops) essentially need diverse pollinators like honey bees species, butterflies, wasps, ants, birds and bats. Appropriate pollination ensures viable seed quality, grain quality and crop evolution, which is crucial for regeneration of plants and genetic diversity.

As with any animal, pollinator numbers and diversity are also dependent on the presence of foraging grounds and nesting habitats. Usually, the traditional natural landscape, diverse traditional crop diversity, kinds of wood stocks, stumps and field watching huts constructed with bamboo have provided good habitat for numerous pollinators. Under normal circumstances, these habitats would be immediately occupied by solitary pollinators and revival of vegetation attracts swarms of social pollinators. However, change is land use, transition from the practice of mixed cropping to monoculture, extensive use of chemicals in farming, and deforestation, are all affecting pollinator health and diversity.

 

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The Nilgiris, Tamil Nadu, India

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