Pollinator diversity and relative abundance of insect pollinators on ridge gourd (Luffa acutangula) flowers in Bihar (India)
Prem Prakash Gautam and Neeraj Kumar
The field experiments were conducted at the University Apiary, Dr. Rajendra Prasad Central Agricultural University Pusa, Samastipur (Bihar) during the Kharif season to document the diversity and abundance of insect pollinators on ridge gourd (Luffa acutangula). The results indicated that the total eight insect species visited ridge gourd flowers, viz. five hymenopterans, two dipterans and one from odonata. Among these Apismellifera L., A. dorsata F., A. florea F., Xylocopa fenestrata F. and Polistes sp. were found to be most frequent pollinators. The relative abundance (no. of insect/m2/10 minutes) revealed that Apismellifera was most dominant species and followed by Apis dorsata, Xylocopa fenestrata, Apis florea, Eristalinus sp., Polistes sp., Paragomphus sp. and Musca domestica. Irrespective of species, the mean population was maximum at 0700-h and minimum at 1300-h of the day. The coefficient of correlation between mean population of pollinator’s species and temperature was found positive and significant while negative correlation was found with relative humidity indicating that temperature plays an important role on activity of insect pollinators.