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Title: Fragmentation and Management of Ethiopian Moist Evergreen Forest Drive Compositional Shifts of Insect Communities Visiting Wild Arabica Coffee Flowers
Authors: Berecha, Gezahegn ×
Aerts, Raf
Muys, Bart
Honnay, Olivier #
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: Springer-Verlag
Series Title: Environmental Management vol:55 pages:373-382
Abstract: Coffea arabica is an indigenous understorey
shrub of the moist evergreen Afromontane forest of SW
Ethiopia. Coffee cultivation here occurs under different
forest management intensities, ranging from almost no
intervention in the ‘forest coffee’ system to far-reaching
interventions that include the removal of competing shrubs
and selective thinning of the upper canopy in the ‘semiforest
coffee’ system. We investigated whether increasing
forest management intensity and fragmentation result in
impacts upon potential coffee pollination services through
examining shifts in insect communities that visit coffee
flowers. Overall, we netted 2,976 insect individuals on C.
arabica flowers, belonging to sixteen taxonomic groups,
comprising 10 insect orders. Taxonomic richness of the
flower-visiting insects significantly decreased and pollinator
community changed with increasing forest management
intensity and fragmentation. The relative abundance of
honey bees significantly increased with increasing forest
management intensity and fragmentation, likely resulting
from the introduction of bee hives in the most intensively
managed forests. The impoverishment of the insect communities
through increased forest management intensity
and fragmentation potentially decreases the resilience of
the coffee production system as pollination increasingly
relies on honey bees alone. This may negatively affect
coffee productivity in the long term as global pollination
services by managed honey bees are expected to decline
under current climate change scenarios. Coffee agroforestry
management practices should urgently integrate pollinator
conservation measures
ISSN: 0364-152X
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Division Forest, Nature and Landscape Research
Ecology, Evolution and Biodiversity Conservation Section
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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