Cognitive Ecology of Pollination

Author: Lars Chittka
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9781139430043
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Important breakthroughs have recently been made in our understanding of the cognitive and sensory abilities of pollinators: how pollinators perceive, memorise and react to floral signals and rewards; how they work flowers, move among inflorescences and transport pollen. These new findings have obvious implications for the evolution of floral display and diversity, but most existing publications are scattered across a wide range of journals in very different research traditions. This book brings together for the first time outstanding scholars from many different fields of pollination biology, integrating the work of neuroethologists and evolutionary ecologists to present a multi-disciplinary approach. Aimed at graduates and researchers of behavioural and pollination ecology, plant evolutionary biology and neuroethology, it will also be a useful source of information for anyone interested in a modern view of cognitive and sensory ecology, pollination and floral evolution.

Biology of Floral Scent

Author: Natalia Dudareva
Publisher: CRC Press
ISBN: 9781420004007
Format: PDF, Kindle
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As with nearly all living creatures, humans have always been attracted and intrigued by floral scents. Yet, while we have been manufacturing perfumes for at least 5000 years to serve a myriad of religious, sexual, and medicinal purposes, until very recently, the limitation of our olfactory faculty has greatly hindered our capacity to clearly and objectively measure scent. Today, thanks to advances in practical methodologies and affordable instrumentation, we are now able to collect, separate, and identify volatile compounds with aromatic impact. These advances are leading to much intensive investigation that has already resulted in many highly insightful and useful discoveries. Biology of Floral Scent provides the first comprehensive treatment of the biology of floral scents. It reviews the impressive research being done across several disciplines, incorporating molecular biology, enzymology, chemistry, entomology, genetic engineering, and functional genomics. Organized into a single volume for the first time, this landmark work covers every major aspect of floral scent research including- Function and significance in the interactions between plants and pollinators Composition and enzymology Evolutionary aspects Commercial applications, including the use of recently identified scent genes to genetically engineer flowers to produce new scents Meeting the needs of plant scientists, cell and molecular biologists, natural product chemists, pharmacognosists, and entomologists, as well as students in these fields, this work provides the background, findings, and insight that will stimulate new research to further advance an understanding of floral scent biology.

Floral Mimicry

Author: Florian P. Schiestl
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198732694
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Mimicry is a classic example of adaptation through natural selection. The traditional focus of mimicry research has been on defence in animals, but there is now also a highly-developed and rapidly-growing body of research on floral mimicry in plants. This has coincided with a revolution in genomic tools, making it possible to explore which genetic and developmental processes underlie the sometimes astonishing changes that give rise to floral mimicry. Being literally rooted to one spot, plants have to cajole animals into acting as couriers for their pollen. Floral mimicry encompasses a set of evolutionary strategies whereby plants imitate the food sources, oviposition sites, or mating partners of animals in order to exploit them as pollinators. This first definitive book on floral mimicry discusses the functions of visual, olfactory, and tactile signals, integrating them into a broader theory of organismal mimicry that will help guide future research in the field. It addresses the fundamental question of whether the evolutionary and ecological principles that were developed for protective mimicry in animals can also be applied to floral mimicry in plants. The book also deals with the functions of floral rewardlessness, a condition which often serves as a precursor to the evolution of mimicry in plant lineages. The authors pay particular attention to the increasing body of research on chemical cues: their molecular basis, their role in cognitive misclassification of flowers by pollinators, and their implications for plant speciation. Comprehensive in scope and conceptual in focus, Floral Mimicry is primarily aimed at senior undergraduates, graduate students, and researchers in plant science and evolutionary biology.

Ecology and Evolution of Flowers

Author: Lawrence D. Harder
Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand
ISBN: 0198570856
Format: PDF, ePub
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Floral biology, floral function, sexual systems, diversification.

Pollination and Floral Ecology

Author: Pat Willmer
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 1400838940
Format: PDF
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Pollination and Floral Ecology is the most comprehensive single-volume reference to all aspects of pollination biology--and the first fully up-to-date resource of its kind to appear in decades. This beautifully illustrated book describes how flowers use colors, shapes, and scents to advertise themselves; how they offer pollen and nectar as rewards; and how they share complex interactions with beetles, birds, bats, bees, and other creatures. The ecology of these interactions is covered in depth, including the timing and patterning of flowering, competition among flowering plants to attract certain visitors and deter others, and the many ways plants and animals can cheat each other. Pollination and Floral Ecology pays special attention to the prevalence of specialization and generalization in animal-flower interactions, and examines how a lack of distinction between casual visitors and true pollinators can produce misleading conclusions about flower evolution and animal-flower mutualism. This one-of-a-kind reference also gives insights into the vital pollination services that animals provide to crops and native flora, and sets these issues in the context of today's global pollination crisis. Provides the most up-to-date resource on pollination and floral ecology Describes flower advertising features and rewards, foraging and learning by flower-visiting animals, behaviors of generalist and specialist pollinators--and more Examines the ecology and evolution of animal-flower interactions, from the molecular to macroevolutionary scale Features hundreds of color and black-and-white illustrations

Carotenoids Vol 4 Natural Functions

Author: George Britton
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 9783764374990
Format: PDF, Mobi
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The Carotenoids book series provides an introduction to the fundamental chemistry, detailed accounts of the basic methods used in carotenoid research, and critical discussions of the biochemistry, functions and applications of carotenoids. Part 1 discusses the fundamental properties on which the biological functions and effects of carotenoids depend. Part 2 describes important natural functions of carotenoids in all kinds of living organisms.

The evolution of transitions between pollination modes in Penstemon

Author: María Clara Castellanos
Publisher: National Library of Canada = Bibliothèque nationale du Canada
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Adaptation to pollinators is considered a major force shaping floral form and function. One approach to studying the mechanisms behind floral diversification is to concentrate on pollinator shifts. A pollinator shift, or transition, is the change in a plant lineage, over evolutionary time, from being adapted to using one type of pollinator to adapting to another type. The purpose of this thesis was to investigate how mechanical aspects of pollination affect the evolution of transitions from insect-pollination to hummingbird-pollination, using the plant genus Penstemon as a model. Two discrete types of Penstemon flowers are distinguished, associated with either bee- or hummingbird-pollination. Convergent transitions to hummingbird-pollination have occurred at least 14 times independently within the group. The superior pollination efficiency of hummingbirds over bees might account for the repeated transitions to hummingbird-pollination. I compared the two pollinators visiting bee-adapted Penstemon strictus and bird-adapted P. barbatus. On P. strictus, bees and birds had similar pollen transfer efficiencies, but hummingbirds were more efficient on P. barbatus than on P. strictus. I propose that a change in nectar rewards that makes a Penstemon patch more attractive to hummingbirds can trigger a shift to more-efficient bird-pollination by simple floral changes. Such changes include characters that explicitly exclude bees. Shifts to hummingbird-pollination can be explained under such conditions, but unless the conditions are sustained, bee-pollination constitutes a stable strategy. Similar trade-offs probably contribute to the formation and maintenance of diversity in flower form across angiosperms. When specializing on hummingbird pollination, floral characters may change to improve the morphological fit between bird and flower, or to exclude the less efficient bees, or both. I experimentally modified floral traits in P. strictus to resemble bird-syndrome flowers, and found effects on pollen transfer, suggesting that restricting pollination by bees played an important role in the evolution of hummingbird-flowers. Additionally, I contrasted patterns of pollen presentation in the two types of flowers across penstemons. Previous models predicted less gradual pollen presentation by flowers with more efficient pollinators. After controlling for relatedness, I found less restricted presentation in hummingbird-pollinated penstemons, consistent with the finding that birds are more efficient than bees.