Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 222, Issue 1, pp 211–223

The collection of pollen by bees


  • R. W. Thorp
    • Department of EntomologyUniversity of California

DOI: 10.1007/BF00984103

Cite this article as:
Thorp, R.W. Pl Syst Evol (2000) 222: 211. doi:10.1007/BF00984103


Bees require pollen for their reproduction and pollen comprises the basic larval food for bees. Most bees acquire pollen passively during flower visitation, but female bees may also collect pollen actively with the aid of various structural and behavioral adaptations. Most bees have evolved adaptations to concentrate pollen into discrete loads and transport pollen back to their nests. The various structural and behavioral adaptations of female bees for acquiring and transporting pollen are the basis of this review.

Key words

Beespollen collectionpollen transportpollen groomingpollen removal
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© Springer-Verlag 2000