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Habitat modelling of Bombus haemorrhoidalis Smith (Hymenoptera) under future projected climatic conditions in Pakistan

Imran Bodlah1*, Ammara Gull E Fareen2, Umer Ayyaz Aslam Sheikh3, Muhammad Adnan Bodlah4, Rehana Bibi5, Hesham F. Alharby6, 7, Habeeb M. Al-Solami6, Naser A. Alkenani6, Abdullah G. Al-Ghamdi6

1Insect Biodiversity and Conservation Group, Department of Entomology, PMAS Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi, Pakistan

2Department of Environmental Sciences, PMAS Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi, Pakistan

3Department of Entomology, University of Poonch, Rawalakot, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan

4Fareed Biodiversity Conservation Centre, Department of Agricultural Engineering, Khawaja Fareed University of Engineering and Information Technology, Rahim Yar Khan, Punjab, Pakistan
5Department of Plant Protection, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Ghazi University D. G. Khan

6Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah 21589, Saudi Arabia

7Plant Biology Research Group, Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah 21589, Saudi Arabia


Bumble bees are among the insects that play a significant role in the pollination of several agricultural crops, fruits, vegetables, and wild flowering plants. Climate change has been discussed as a prospective threat to the biodiversity of these pollinators in different parts of the planet during the next several decades. As a result of expected climate change circumstances, a number of studies have determined that the distribution range of bumble bees will alter, with some species becoming extinct and majority of them relocating to the higher mountainous areas. Numerous countries around the globe have developed conservation measures for these ecologically and economically significant organisms. In Pakistan, Bombus haemorrhoidalis (Hymenoptera: Apidae) is more likely to be used as a pollinator in greenhouse vegetable production, as compared to other documented species. Our research aimed to find moderately and highly favorable locations for B. haemorrhoidalis in 2050 and 2070 based on two representative concentration pathways (RCP4.5 and RCP8.5) using Maxent. Five key contributing variables including Bio1 (Annual Mean Temperature), Bio12 (Annual Precipitation), Bio14 (Precipitation of Driest Month) and Bio18 (Precipitation of Warmest Quarter) along with 52 occurrence record of the species were utilized in the modeling procedure for determining potential distribution of B. haemorrhoidalis. Performance of the model was assessed by calculating the area under the curves (AUC), the partial ROC, the omission rates (E=5%), and the AICc (Model complexity). Regularization multiplier of finally selected model was 2. Based on the results of the Jackknife test, it was determined that only four climatic factors, namely Bio4, Bio12, Bio14 and Bio18 contributed 89.0% to the prediction of the species’ prospective distribution. The results indicated that highly suitable distribution areas of this species would be concentrated in upper the mountainous areas of Pakistan under the influence of climate change. The suitability of its habitat, however, will decrease under the forecasted climatic conditions of future scenarios (RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5) for 2050 and 2070. According to the findings, the area that is anticipated to be moderately suitable will shrink by 320.492083 km2between the years 2050 and 2070 under RCP 4.5 (70), as compared to RCP 4.5. (50). In the same pattern, according to RCP 8.5 (70), it would shrink by a total of 260.764698 km2 as compared to RCP 8.5. (50). A similar pattern would be observed for forecasted highly suitable areas, which would shrink by a total of 2492.820215 km2 under RCP 4.5. (70) compared to RCP 4.5 (50), and by a total of 1363.441658 km2 under RCP 8.5 (70) in contrast to RCP 8.5. (50). Results indicated that suitable areas for this species would decrease during two scenarios of year 2050 and 2070. This species would leave many areas of its current distribution under the influence of climate change and move upward towards upper mountainous areas of Azad Kashmir, Gilgit Baltistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Based on the results of our studies, Government along with other stakeholders of bee pollination may develop climate mitigation strategies to conserve pollination services of B. haemorrhoidalis on a sustainable basis. More extensive surveys are needed along with other tools of remote sensing for more reliable predictions.

Keywords: Bombus haemorrhoidalis, Habitat suitability, Environmental predictors, Maxent, Climate change, Pakistan

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