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What is pollination and its types

Did you know that if the bees disappeared we would only have 4 years to live? This famous phrase belongs to the renowned scientist Albert Einstein, who knew the importance of the pollination of bees and the essential function of these within the correct functioning and ecological balance of planet Earth. Although honeybees ( Apis mellifera ) are probably the most prominent species in the pollination by insects, the reality is that in Europe alone there are more than 1,884 species of wild bees along with thousands of species of bumblebees, butterflies, bats, birds, rodents, and other pollinators.

If you want to discover more details about the amazing world of pollination, in this AgroCorrn article you will find detailed information about what pollination is and its types .

You may also be interested in: Importance of pollination

What is pollination of plants

The pollination of plants is the biological process by which pollen is carried from the male structures of a flower to the female parts, either within the same plant (when the flowers have organs male and female or plant has flowers both male and female) or between different plants (in those species in which there are plants with only male flowers and other plants with only female flowers ). In the latter case, the process is called cross pollination .

Through this curious process, the first phase of the reproduction of plant species (or fertilization) is carried out, so if we ask ourselves what the function of pollination is , we can clearly affirm that it is the first step to achieve the survival and evolution of plant species, through their reproduction.

To expand more information on this topic, we invite you to read this other post on What are the parts of a flower and their functions . Let’s see in the next sections how exactly pollination occurs, as well as the different types of pollination that exist in nature, since apart is manual or artificial pollination, and the importance of this process.

How pollination occurs

As we have seen in the previous section, the pollination process is necessary for fertilization to take place , within the reproduction function of plants . But what exactly is pollination?

The natural pollination is the transport of pollen by biotic and abiotic agents , which guarantee that the male gametes (pollen) found in the stamens of flowers, are deposited in the pistil of the flower and fertilizing the female gametes ( ovules).

This process has numerous and different pollination strategies developed both by pollinators and by the plants themselves. As an example of the pollination process with adaptation of the plants themselves and through insects, we highlight the amazing case of the bumblebee orchid ( Ophrys bombyliflora ), whose colors and texture resemble the body of females of certain species of bumblebees. Through this mimesis, the orchid manages to attract male bumblebees to itself, which will later carry the pollen grains on their hair-covered bodies until they reach another orchid, thus achieving the pollination of this plant species.

Types of pollination

The plant world never ceases to amaze us and hides mysteries as amazing as the existence of plants pollinated by the wind. In this section we will see what exactly the pollination classes are , which are grouped into three types:

  • Anemophilic pollination or wind pollination.
  • Hydrophilic pollination or through water.
  • Zoophilic or animal pollination.

Within this last type of pollination, the subgroup of entomophilic pollination (made by insects) is particularly distinguished , since there are thousands of species of insects that carry out the pollination process in millions of plants around the planet’s ecosystems. Here you can learn more about What are pollinating insects and their importance .

Importance of pollination

We have already seen how important pollination is for plants and how it is carried out, as well as the types that there are, so we only need to talk about the great importance of this process for nature and for us.

Pollination is essential to maintain the balance of ecological systems , as well as people’s food security, since the production of agricultural systems depends directly on the pollination of crops . As we have seen throughout the article, pollination allows the fertilization and reproduction of plant species to take place , in a way that ensures the existence of new plant individuals and the species are perpetuated. Therefore, it is the process that allows plants to reproduce and, directly, there is food for herbivorous animals and omnivorous animals, as well as that due to this there is food for carnivorous animals.

On the other hand, the existence of highly biodiverse pollinators optimally favors both crop yields and the balance of natural ecosystems . Thus, in agricultural and natural ecosystems, resilience can be developed through the biodiversity of the pollinators in them, whose ecological function and response to environmental conditions allow minimizing the risks due to climate change that threaten current ecosystems. and futures. Here you can learn more about the importance of pollination and below you can see a video about this process that is part of the reproduction of vegetables.

Now that you have learned more about what pollination is and what it consists of, you may also be interested in learning more about Plant Reproduction by entering this link.

Maria Anderson

Hello, I am a blogger specialized in environmental, health and scientific dissemination issues in general. The best way to define myself as a blogger is by reading my texts, so I encourage you to do so. Above all, if you are interested in staying up to date and reflecting on these issues, both on a practical and informative level.

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