Nunes CEP, Nevard L, Montealegre-Z F & Vallejo-Marín M (2021) Variation in the natural frequency of stamens in six morphologically diverse, buzz-pollinated, heterantherous Solanum taxa and its relationship to bee vibrations. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. https://doi.org/10.1093/botlinnean/boab044
During buzz pollination, bees use vibrations to remove pollen from flowers. Vibrations at the natural frequency of pollen-carrying stamens are amplified through resonance, resulting in higher amplitude vibrations. Because pollen release depends on vibration amplitude, bees could increase pollen removal by vibrating at the natural frequency of stamens. However, few studies have characterized the natural frequencies of stamens and compared them to the frequencies of buzz-pollinating bees. We use laser Doppler vibrometry to characterize natural frequencies of stamens of six morphologically diverse, buzz-pollinated, heterantherous Solanum taxa and compare the frequency of bumblebee buzzes produced on two Solanum spp. with different natural frequencies. We found that stamen morphology and plant identity explain variation in their natural frequency. The natural frequencies of the stamens in the studied Solanum taxa fell between 45 and 295 Hz; in five out of six taxa the frequencies were < 190 Hz, which only partly overlaps floral vibrations of buzz-pollinating bees. We show that captive bumblebees produce vibrations at a frequency of 345 Hz and do not change their floral vibrations to match the natural frequency of the visited flowers. Our results suggest that pollen release induced by vibrating stamens at their natural frequencies might only play a role in a subset of buzz pollination interactions.
biomechanics; Bombus terrestris; buffalo-bur; buzz pollination; flower diversity; nightshade; resonance; Solanaceae; Solanum citrullifolium; Solanum rostratum
Output Status: Forthcoming/Available Online
Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society
|Publication date online||31/07/2021|
|Date accepted by journal||29/05/2021|
|Publisher||Oxford University Press (OUP)|