Priorities for Research and Development in the Management of Pollination Services for Agricultural Development in Africa
It is increasingly recognized that a sustainable future for agriculture must build on ecosystem services. Pollination is an important ecosystem service in all agroecosystems. In much of Africa the main challenge is conserving pollinator biodiversity in traditionally “ecologically-intensive” agroecosystems that are changing to meet different demands for food security and poverty alleviation, rather than safeguarding pollination in transition from conventional agricultural systems, with a high reliance on purchased inputs, to “ecologically-intensive” agroecosystems using natural inputs provided by biodiversity. Priority issues for research and development in pollination services in Africa include, inter alia: quantification and documentation of pollination deficits and finding measures to address these; socio-economic valuation of pollinator-friendly practices; assessment of lethal and sub-lethal effects of farming methods, such as pesticide use, on crop pollinators; identification of habitat management practices that enhance synergies between pollinator lifecycles and crop growing patterns; and policy analysis in relation to drivers and trends in pollination services and management.
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