Pollen Transport in the Dark: Hawkmoths Prefer Non CropPlants to Crop Plants in an Agricultural Landscape

Pushan Chakraborty, Barbara Smith, Parthiba Basu

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    3 Citations (Scopus)


    In many previous studies hawkmoths have been found to be involved in nocturnal pollination of many plants. But their role in crop pollination is still unexplored.This study tried to evaluate their potential to carry pollens of crop. Hawkmoths were collected by light traps and slides were made from the pollen attached to their body.The hawkmoths and the pollens were identified. A pollentransport network was created using the data. The species level indices of each plant species in the network were estimated. Only a small fraction of pollens were made by the crops among the total types of pollens carried by the hawkmoths. Rest of the pollens belonged to that of the noncrops. The species level indices suggest the crop pollens to be relatively less important in the network as reflected in the lower values of species degree and species strength.The higher species level specialisation values of crop pollens suggested they are restricted to be carried by few hawkmoth species only. It is clearly revealed that hawk-moths carry mostly non crop pollens, not crop pollens.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)299–303
    Number of pages5
    JournalProceedings of the Zoological Society
    Issue number3
    Early online date17 Apr 2017
    Publication statusPublished - Sept 2018


    • Basic-fuchsin
    • Hawkmoths
    • Light-trap
    • Species degree
    • Species strength
    • Sphingidae
    • Specialisation


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