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agroforesterie

Cirad – Crop diversification enhances yields, biodiversity and ecosystem services

The article, published in Global Change Biology on 18 July 2021, assembles for the first time a substantial body of empirical evidence on the positive impacts of cultivated biodiversity on agroecosystems.
Crop diversification was found to enhance crop production by 14% and associated biodiversity by almost 25%. Water quality was improved by 50%, pest and disease control by over 63% and soil quality by 11%.

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mésange

A stressful life in the city affects birds’ genes

Great tits living in cities are genetically different from great tits in the countryside. This is what researchers have found in a unique study, where they examined populations of great tits in nine large European cities.

The researchers compared the city bird genes with the genes of their relatives in the countryside. It did not matter if the great tits lived in Milan, Malmö or Madrid: in order to handle an environment created by humans, the birds evolved in a similar way.

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papillon

Habitat fragmentation prevents species from tracking climate change

Climate changeaffectsbiodiversity globally, by forcing species to shift their distribution to track the changes in temperature. An international collaboration between scientists from France, Sweden, the Netherlands and Finland shows, in an article published in the journal Ecology Letters,that habitat fragmentation caused by human activity affects distribution shifts in butterfly species and, hence, their capacity to cope with climate change.

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Vespa velutina frelon

Not just honeybees: predatory habits of Vespa velutina (Hymenoptera: Vespidae) in France

Our results suggest that V. velutina is a generalist opportunistic predator targeting mostly locally abundant prey. While the species may have an impact on honeybees, its generalist, opportunistic behaviour on abundant insects suggests a minor impact on wild species.

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Syrphe porte-plume (Sphaerophoria scripta), un visiteur assidu de la moutarde blanche (Sinapis alba) du printemps à l’automne. (©Benoît Geslin)

No off-season for insect pollinators in the city!

In the city, the seasonal patterns of activity of insect pollinators could be disturbed by the urban microclimate as well as by the presence of ornamental flora. To study this phenomenon, Vincent Zaninotto and his collaborators monitored the activity of insect pollinators in Paris and in the natural environment, from late winter to autumn. In […]

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