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A large-scale dataset reveals taxonomic and functional specificities of wild bee communities in urban habitats of Western Europe

Fauviau, A., Baude, M., Bazin, N., Fiordaliso, W., Fisogni, A., Fortel, L., Garrigue, J., Geslin, B., Goulnik, J., Guilbaud, L., Hautekèete, N., Heiniger, C., Kuhlmann, M., Lambert, O., Langlois, D., Le Féon, V., Lopez Vaamonde, C., Maillet, G., Massol, F., Michel, N. , Michelot-Antalik, A., Michez, D., Mouret, H., Piquot, Y., Potts, S. G. ORCID:, Roberts, S., Ropars, L., Schurr, L., Van Reeth, C., Villalta, I., Zaninotto, V. ORCID:, Dajoz, I. and Henry, M. (2022) A large-scale dataset reveals taxonomic and functional specificities of wild bee communities in urban habitats of Western Europe. Scientific Reports, 12 (1). 18866. ISSN 2045-2322

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1038/s41598-022-21512-w


Wild bees are declining, mainly due to the expansion of urban habitats that have led to land-use changes. Effects of urbanization on wild bee communities are still unclear, as shown by contrasting reports on their species and functional diversities in urban habitats. To address this current controversy, we built a large dataset, merging 16 surveys carried out in 3 countries of Western Europe during the past decades, and tested whether urbanization influences local wild bee taxonomic and functional community composition. These surveys encompassed a range of urbanization levels, that were quantified using two complementary metrics: the proportion of impervious surfaces and the human population density. Urban expansion, when measured as a proportion of impervious surfaces, but not as human population density, was significantly and negatively correlated with wild bee community species richness. Taxonomic dissimilarity of the bee community was independent of both urbanization metrics. However, occurrence rates of functional traits revealed significant differences between lightly and highly urbanized communities, for both urbanization metrics. With higher human population density, probabilities of occurrence of above-ground nesters, generalist and small species increased. With higher soil sealing, probabilities of occurrence of above-ground nesters, generalists and social bees increased as well. Overall, these results, based on a large European dataset, suggest that urbanization can have negative impacts on wild bee diversity. They further identify some traits favored in urban environments, showing that several wild bee species can thrive in cities.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development > Department of Sustainable Land Management > Centre for Agri-environmental Research (CAER)
ID Code:109308
Uncontrolled Keywords:Animals, Humans, Bees, Cities, Ecosystem, Biodiversity, Population Density, Urbanization, Europe
Publisher:Nature Publishing Group


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