Original article


, Volume 44, Issue 6, pp 729-737

First online:

Nest management increases pollinator density in passion fruit orchards

  • Camila N. JunqueiraAffiliated withUniversidade Federal de Uberlândia
  • , Marcela YamamotoAffiliated withUniversidade Estadual de Goiás, Unidade Universitária de Quirinópolis
  • , Paulo E. OliveiraAffiliated withUniversidade Federal de Uberlândia
  • , Katja HogendoornAffiliated withSchool of agriculture, Food and Wine, University of Adelaide
  • , Solange C. AugustoAffiliated withUniversidade Federal de Uberlândia Email author 

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The yields of yellow passion fruit are vulnerable to pollinator decline because the crop is strictly self-incompatible. Nectar foraging carpenter bees are the main pollinators of this crop, whereas honeybees and stingless bees take pollen and nectar without pollination, and can be classified as “thieves”. In many cropping areas, the density of effective pollinators is very low and precludes optimal yield. We investigated, over a period of 6 months, whether the provision of unoccupied and occupied carpenter bee nests could lead to (a) an increase in crop visitation by carpenter bees and (b) a decrease in visitation by thieves. We found that introduction of occupied nests can influence visitation by both carpenter bees and thieves in the expected ways, while the sole provision of unoccupied nests did not achieve this. Our study can be regarded as an important step for increasing pollinators’ population in yellow passion fruit orchards using trap-nests as nesting substrate.


carpenter bees pollination Xylocopa trap-nest