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Field study of biodiversity

The COST-project has been studying if there is any difference in biodiversity found at organic and conventional farms.
Field study
Photo: Johan Ekroos

Some of our colleagues at the CEC have spent summer doing fieldwork studying bumblebees. Romain Carrié and others from the COST-project have collected pollen from bumblebees and surveyed flower resources at 19 different farms in Skåne.

- From earlier fieldwork, we know there is a difference in both number and biodiversity of bumblebees found at organic and conventional farms. Now we wanted to know if this difference is due to variations in the quantity or diversity of flowering plants from which the bumblebees collect pollen, says Romain Carrié.

- We will count the number of bumblebees, the number of queens and workers, study their growth and the pollen they have been collecting, Romain continues.

To avoid the season of rape flowering the fieldwork was performed from mid June and continued July through.

- The late part of the season when pollinators are active is important for their reproduction. It is critical that there is enough pollen during July and August because this is when most bumblebees produce new queens, explains Romain.

This was an unusually warm and dry summer in Sweden, which could affect the results from the fieldwork.

- We fear that bumblebees at all farms have had difficulties finding food this summer, but it would be interesting if we could find any difference in resilience to drought, such as the drought we have had this year, says Romain.

Read more about the COST-project.

The Swedish local paper Sydsvenskan have published an article about this fieldwork.

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Centre for Environmental and Climate Research, CEC

Sölvegatan 37
223 62 Lund, Sweden

Visiting address
The Ecology building, Sölvegatan 37, Lund