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Interpopulation variation in pollinators and floral scent of the ladys-slipper orchid Cypripedium calceolus L.
AuthorBraunschmid, Herbert ; Mükisch, Bernadette ; Rupp, Thomas ; Schäffler, Irmgard ; Zit0, Pietro ; Birtele, Daniele ; Dötterl, Stefan
Published in
Arthropod-Plant Interactions, Amsterdam, 2017, Vol. 2017, page 1-17
PublishedSpringer Netherlands, 2017
Document typeJournal Article
Keywords (EN)Deceptive pollination / Electroantennography / Dynamic headspace / Pollinator climate
URNurn:nbn:at:at-ubs:3-4281 Persistent Identifier (URN)
 The work is publicly available
Interpopulation variation in pollinators and floral scent of the ladys-slipper orchid Cypripedium calceolus L. [2.32 mb]
Abstract (English)

<span>Floral scent is a key mediator in many plantpollinator interactions. It is known to vary not only among plant species, but also within species among populations. However, there is a big gap in our knowledge of whether such variability is the result of divergent selective pressures exerted by a variable pollinator climate or alternative scenarios (e.g., genetic drift). Cypripedium calceolus is a Eurasian deceptive </span><span class="searchterm">ladys</span><span>-slipper orchid pollinated by bees. It is found from near sea level to altitudes of 2500 m. We asked whether pollinator climate and floral scents vary in a concerted manner among different altitudes. Floral scents of four populations in the Limestone Alps were collected by dynamic headspace and analyzed by gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry (GC/MS). Flower visitors and pollinators (the subset of visitors with pollen loads) were collected and identified. Preliminary coupled gas chromatographic and electroantennographic measurements with floral scents and pollinators revealed biologically active components. More than 70 compounds were detected in the scent samples, mainly aliphatics, terpenoids, and aromatics. Although several compounds were found in all samples, and all samples were dominated by linalool and octyl acetate, scents differed among populations. Similarly, there were strong differences in flower visitor spectra among populations with most abundant flower visitors being bees and syrphid flies at low and high altitudes, respectively. Pollinator climate differed also among populations; however, independent of altitude, most pollinators were bees of Lasioglossum, Andrena, and Nomada. Only few syrphids acted as pollinators and this is the first record of flies as pollinators in C. calceolus. The electrophysiological tests showed that bees and syrphid flies sensed many of the compounds released by the flowers, among them linalool and octyl acetate. Overall, we found that both floral scent and visitor/pollinator climate differ among populations. We discuss whether interpopulation variation in scent is a result of pollinator-mediated selection.</span>

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