Biodiversity and Pollination Activity of Stingless Bees (Meliponini) in Agro Forest Zone

MT Liadi, AK Musa, MA Belewu, TO Amusa


This study was conducted to evaluate biodiversity and pollination activity of stingless bees in the University of Ilorin
agro forest. Stingless bees, their nests, trees hosting the bees and trees and crops visited by the bees were identified. The species of
bees foraging on flowers of trees were observed and counted in 1m by 1m quadrat area of the flowers. The results showed that
Melliponula ferruginae was found more in the cavities of Gmelina arborea, Dactylurina staudingeri constructed aerial nests on
Daniella oliveri while Hypotrigona ruspolli was more in windows, doors and walls of old buildings. Seventeen plants/ crops were
identified to be visited by Melliponula ferruginae, Dactylurina staudingeriHypotrigona ruspolli and Apis melliffera out of which eight
were fruit crops, two were oil crops and seven were the other trees of economic importance in the area. Pollination activity of the bees
showed that Meliponula ferruginae was found on 11.2% of the plants, D. staudingeri on 41.2%, H. ruspolii on 94.1% and Apis
mellifera (common honey bees) on 82.4%. All the flowering plants identified were pollen producers (100%) while 64.7% were
nectar producers. Dactylurina staudingeri was found in great numbers on fruit crops (A. occidentale, M. indica and P. guajava), oil
crop ( J. curcas) and trees. Hypotrigona ruspolii was found in great number mostly on fruit crops especially Citrus species, two oil
crops and the economic important trees. Meliponula ferruginae was only found on two plants, a fruit crop and a tree. Apis mellifera
was found on the fruit crops, one oil crop and the trees. Higher numbers of D. staudingeri visited many of the plants compared to A.
mellifera. Based on the descriptive analysis employed, stingless bees found in the agro forest were responsible for the pollination of
the commercial crops and economic important trees in the forest.

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