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Monday, April 9 • 5:30pm - 7:00pm
POSTER: Landscape Genetics and Connectivity Modelling of Six Native Bee Species in the Agricultural Zone of Alberta, Canada

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AUTHORS: Celia Hein*, University of Toronto; Ronan Marrec, Université de Picardie Jules Verne; Hossam Abdel Moniem, University of Toronto; Helene Wagner, University of Toronto

ABSTRACT: Bees pollinate large proportions of native plants and agricultural crops, and they are declining in abundance, diversity, and distribution worldwide. Intensive agricultural systems spread geographically and increase habitat loss, degradation, and fragmentation. Efficient, accurate studies of pollinator communities and their relative threats are crucial to prevent further losses and aid conservation, preservation, and restoration efforts. The main goal of this project is to test and compare the power of several connectivity models in explaining the spatial genetic structure and connectivity of native bee species in the agricultural zone of Alberta, Canada. We selected six common, generalist bee species: Bombus ternarius, B. rufocinctus, Halictus confusus, H. rubicundus, Andrena lupinorum, and Hylaeus affinis that were sampled and identified by collaborators in a hierarchical sampling design with 12 clusters and 101 sites. We will genotype each species with SNP markers and relate its spatial genetic structure to competing models of panmixia, isolation by distance, species-agnostic structural connectivity, habitat connectivity, and species-specific habitat connectivity, and choose the best model for each species. The species-agnostic structural connectivity model was developed using indices of human footprint and intensity of human use extracted from landcover data at 10 meter resolution provided by the Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute (ABMI). This study will help validate such a coarse-filter approach and discriminate between alternative parameterizations of the contributions of human footprint categories and intensity of human use to landscape resistance and overall connectivity. We hope that through comparisons of connectivity models with varying specificity across a range of bee species with varying life history, we can help bridge the gap between single-species connectivity models and coarse-filter approaches, which are important for decision-making in multifunctional landscapes.

Monday April 9, 2018 5:30pm - 7:00pm CDT
Monroe Room

Attendees (3)