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The role of pollinator attracting scent in the sexually deceptive orchids Ophrys chestermanii, O. normanii and O. tenthredinifera

Title data

Gögler, Julia ; Stökl, Johannes ; Sramkova, Anna ; Twele, Robert ; Francke, Wittko ; Cortis, Pierluigi ; Scrugli, Antonio ; Giotta, Cesario ; Piccitto, Marcello ; Ayasse, Manfred:
The role of pollinator attracting scent in the sexually deceptive orchids Ophrys chestermanii, O. normanii and O. tenthredinifera.
In: Mitteilungen der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Allgemeine und Angewandte Entomologie. Vol. 16 (2008) . - pp. 175-178.
ISSN 0344-9084

Official URL: Volltext

Abstract in another language

Sexual deception of male bees is one of the most remarkable mechanisms of pollination (Ackermann 1986, Proctor & al. 1996). Flowers of the orchid genus Ophrys mimic females of their pollinator species, usually bees and wasps, to attract males, which try to copulate with the flowers. During this so-called “pseudocopulation” the male removes the pollinia and transfers them to another flower to ensure pollination. Apart from visual and tactile cues, floral scent was shown to be most important for eliciting mating behaviour in males (Kullenberg 1961, Schiestl & al. 1999, Ayasse & al. 2003). Pollination in Ophrys is highly specific and usually each Ophrys species attracts only one pollinator species (Paulus & Gack 1990). The high degree of specialization provides the means of reproductive isolation between the intercrossable Ophrys-species (Ehrendorfer 1980). The complex odour-bouquets released by the flowers are species-specific and often consist of more than 100 different chemical compounds (Borg-Karlson & al. 1985, Ayasse 2006). Speciation in Ophrys-orchids may be brought about by changes in the pollinator attracting floral scent. The attraction of a new pollinator may act as a pre-zygotic isolation barrier (Stebbins 1970, Paulus & Gack 1990, Soliva & al. 2001). We investigated three sympatrically occuring Ophrys-species on Sardinia. O. chestermanii and O. normanii are endemic and are both pollinated by males of the bumblebee B. vestalis. O. tenthredinifera is pollinated by Eucera nigrilabris. There are different opinions concerning the taxonomic status of O. normanii. It has been described as an actual hybrid between O. chestermanii and O. tenthredinifera (Wood 1983). Paulus & Gack (1995) suggested that it is an own species, that either has developed from a hybrid between O. chestermanii and O. normanii or that has evolved by radiation from O. tenthredinifera. By conducting behavioural-tests with B. vestalis males, performing gas chromatographic analyses and electrophysiological studies we wanted to identify pollinator attracting scent and to clarify the taxonomic status of O. normanii.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: No
Additional notes: BAYCEER147426
Keywords: Bestäuberanlockung; Blütenduftsoff; Bombus vestalis; Ophrys Bombus vestalis; Ophrys; floral scent; pollination by sexual deception
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Biology > Chair Animal Ecology II - Evolutionary Animal Ecology > Chair Animal Ecology II - Evolutionary Animal Ecology - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Sandra Steiger
Research Institutions
Research Institutions > Research Centres
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Result of work at the UBT: No
DDC Subjects: 500 Science
Date Deposited: 15 Apr 2019 13:35
Last Modified: 15 Apr 2019 13:35
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/48405