Securing pollination for productive agriculture: Guidelines for effective pollinator management and stakeholder adoptionure

With the eventual establishment of Varroa mite in Australia considered likely, the focus of the project of this project is on mitigating the mite’s impact by improving the capacity for agricultural land to support hived honeybees (which can be managed to reduce the impact of Varroa mite), and native pollinators like native bees, butterflies and flies (which are immune to Varroa mite).
Revegetation on or around farms that supports pollinators has been shown to enhance crop pollination and is an established strategy in major horticultural regions in Europe and the USA, but not yet in Australia. The research will determine which pollinators are currently supporting production and allow an assessment of how this service will change with Varroa mite impacts. It will identify practices that ensure provision of on‐going pollination services by providing resources in and around crops for non‐honeybee pollinators; as well as providing food resources for commercially managed honeybees, to support the best possible population strength.
This project will be the first in Australia to determine the ways in which growers can harness the pollination capacity of native and exotic pollinators in an integrated way. It is aimed at increasing grower profits and minimising the risks of a pollinator crisis, but will also provide lasting environmental benefits, as researchers actively engage with growers in revegetation projects that benefit crop pollinators and develop advice on the management of remnant vegetation. Case crops have been selected that provide a general model for how production benefits can be maximised, so that practices can then be rolled out for other Australian pollinatordependent crops.