The contribution of the BIOTA/FAPESP Program to the knowledge on pollination and plant reproduction



Abstract Interactions between plant and pollinators are associated with the origin and maintenance of species diversity, as well as ecosystem functioning. The potential of pollination as an ecosystem service is evidenced by its association with food production. Understanding pollination at the landscape scale is essential for characterizing the pollination service for several crops that depend on pollinators for fruit and seed set that make up the human diet. Our aim was to carry out a literature review of studies and projects funded by BIOTA/FAPESP to illustrate the main research approaches developed in the field of Pollination Biology, especially related to plant-pollinator interactions. Plant-pollinator interactions in the Atlantic forest were leveraged as a result of this long-term research program, during which several papers were published in international journals. Pollination by bees (melittophily) was the most representative pollination system studied. In addition to melittophily, other interactions were studied such as pollination by hawkmoths (sphingophily), by hummingbirds (ornithophily) and by bats (chiropterophily). The specific mutualistic relationships between fig trees and fig wasps were also subject of studies within the Program. At the beginning of the BIOTA/FAPESP Program, there were many gaps in basic information about pollination and breeding systems of Brazilian native plant species. Thus, the Program was fundamental to fuel research on the natural history of plants and pollinators from the Atlantic forest. Overall, the Program funded studies that investigated themes such as functional pollination ecology, pollinator effectiveness, plant population genetics, structure and dynamics of plant-pollinator interaction networks, as well as geographic distribution and macroevolution of pollination systems, as well as genetic and molecular studies of native plant populations focusing on pollen flow and genetic structure of populations. Additionally, studies on pollination in the context of landscape ecology had the aim of assessing the effects of forest fragmentation on the functioning of plant populations and their interactions with pollinators and the relationships between landscape structure and ecological processes, biodiversity, and ecosystem service. Therefore, the Program had a prominent role in producing basic data with great implications for understanding the ecology and promoting the conservation of plant-pollinator interactions.




How to Cite

Agostini, K., Wolowski, M., Bergamo, P. J., Brito, V. L. G. de, Nunes, C. E. P., Pansarin, L. M., & Sazima, M. (2022). The contribution of the BIOTA/FAPESP Program to the knowledge on pollination and plant reproduction. Biota Neotropica, 22(spe). Retrieved from



Thematic Reviews