The discussions and research on the use of native bees to leverage strawberry production in Brazil is a fact that has proven to bring quality gains and financial gains for the producer and it has been desired to invest in this plant-insect consortium. The native bee Tetragonisca angustula L. is considered as one of the key species for the beneficial strawberry-insect consortium. However, associating native bees to strawberry crops requires assessing the intense application of insecticides and fungicides for pest control. From the above, the present study aims to find out the food preference of T. angustula for strawberry pollen to the detriment of other types of pollen, in order to assist in the design of the real risk scenario for the species. For this purpose, a palynological analysis will be carried out of pollen samples collected from hives of T. angustula installed in the field near strawberry crops (Fragaria x ananassa Duch). Chromatographic analysis of pollen samples will also be carried out to check contamination by the pesticide thiametoxam. To prepare the samples, the QuEChERS method will be used. The study proposed here will complement the ongoing research and financed by Fapesp (Process N° 2018 / 16244-0) in the region of Bom Repouso, MG, under the title: "Assessment of the environmental risk of the insecticide thiametoxam applied to strawberry cultivation on Tetragonisca angustula Latreille (1811) ". Among the results expected from the research are answering the contribution of the plants designated as "attractive or not attractive" within the theoretical range of action of T. angustula (500 meters). In the same way, the results contribute to deepen the risk assessment studies of pesticides for native bees, in addition to the experimental improvement in palynological analysis to support real risk scenarios for pollinators in agricultural environments.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: