Local changes in communities of wild bees (Hymenoptera: Apoidea, Apiformes): 30 years later

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ABSTRACT

Changes in communities of wild bees (Apiformes) were studied in relation to changes in vegetation in six permanent plots (natural forest habitats in the Wielkopolska National Park, and semi-natural habitats in the agricultural landscape near Turew) at the end of four decades (starting from the late 1970s). In 2008-2010, as many as 100 species of Apiformes were recorded there, which is more than reported in earlier decades. The most stable bee communities were those in forest habitats (oak-hornbeam forest, oak forest). Substantial qualitative and quantitative changes in vegetation and bee communities were recorded only after the renaturalisation of a former xerothermic grassland, which had become overgrown with shrubs and trees as a result of plant succession. Human interference (e.g. the felling of some trees growing along a road, clearance of understorey shrubs, ploughing of roadside margins) at selected refuge habitats in the agricultural landscape led to short-term fluctuations in bee abundance and diversity, but an increasing trend in abundance was noted.

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