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Abstract Detail

Ecological Section

Kaczorowski, Rainee L. [1], Holtsford, Timothy P. [1].

Nectar traits of plants from natural populations of Nicotiana species and the comparison of greenhouse- and field-grown plants.

Nine populations of five different Nicotiana species in 2004 and one population of a putative new species in 2001 were studied to characterize nectar traits over the first day after anthesis. Nectar traits were measured at the approximate time of anthesis and 24 h later from flowers that were either bagged or exposed to floral visitors. Significant effects of time and bagging were detected in some populations. The difference between bagged and exposed flowers at 24 h after anthesis was used as an estimate of the amount of nectar removed by floral visitors. Most populations had significantly less nectar in flowers exposed to visitors compared to bagged flowers. Nectar traits of bagged flowers were also compared to previously documented greenhouse data (Kaczorowski et al., 2005). Naturally-growing plants were significantly different in at least one nectar trait when compared to greenhouse-grown plants from the same population; nectar concentration was always significantly higher in the greenhouse than in the field. Nectar traits were also characterized for all flowers on two to three plants from most of the natural populations, where floral position and ecological variables (robbing, florivores, and flower retention) were also documented. Position effects were not detected, but nectar traits were affected by ecological variables. Additionally, a flower color-changing species exhibited a significant difference in nectar volume and energy content during its color phases. This study demonstrates the importance of characterizing nectar traits in the field to understand what pollinators are likely to experience when visiting plants.

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1 - University of Missouri-Columbia, Biological Sciences, 105 Tucker Hall, Columbia, Missouri, 65211, USA

Natural variation
Floral color
floral visitors
flower position.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: CP09
Location: Lake Ontario/Hilton
Date: Monday, July 9th, 2007
Time: 10:15 AM
Number: CP09001
Abstract ID:961

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