Biodiversity Science ›› 2007, Vol. 15 ›› Issue (6): 673-679.doi: 10.1360/biodiv.070175

Special Issue: Studies on Plant–Pollinator Interaction

• Special Issue • Previous Article     Next Article

Evolutionary implications of pollen presentation schedules in animal- pollinated plants

Ting Lu, Dunyan Tan*   

  1. College of Forestry Sciences, Xinjiang Agricultural University, Urumqi 830052
  • Online:2007-11-20

In order to donate pollen to recipient stigmas efficiently, animal-pollinated plants have evolved a variety of floral characteristics. Pollen presentation schedule is one of them. Plants can control the pace of pollen presentation and distribute pollen among pollinators by either packaging or dispensing mechanisms. Pollen presentation theory (PPT) predicts that gradual pollen presentation should be favored when pollinators are abundant or inefficient at delivering the pollen they remove; while synchronous pollen presentation should be favored when pollinators are infrequent or efficient at delivering the pollen they remove. Here, we present a review of recent advances in this field, with an emphasis on: (1) floral mechanisms restricting pollen removal; (2) pollen presentation theory; and (3) evolutionary advantages of pollen presentation schedules. Current research focuses on the adaptability of pollen presentation schedule to the pollinating animals, while environmental factors also work on the schedule. The PPT model cannot fully predict the pollen presentation temporal schedule of plants distributed in special environments, thus further combined studies and analyses are needed regarding floral syndromes, pollination systems, mating systems and environment factors in suit-able groups. These results will help us have a better understanding of the adaptive advantages of pollen pres-entation schedules.

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