Enhancement of fruit quality in Capsicum annum through pollination by Hypotrigona gribodoi in Kakamega, Western Kenya

Authors

  • Nkoba Kiatoko,

    Corresponding author
    1. Commercial Insects Program, icipe-African Insect Science for Food and Health, Nairobi, Kenya
    2. Department of Zoological Sciences, Kenyatta University, Nairobi, Kenya
    • Correspondence: Nkoba Kiatoko, Commercial Insects Program, icipe-African Insect Science for Food and Health, Nairobi 30772-00100, Kenya.

      Email: nkiatoko@icipe.org

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  • Suresh Kumar Raina,

    1. Commercial Insects Program, icipe-African Insect Science for Food and Health, Nairobi, Kenya
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  • Elliud Muli,

    1. Department of Biological Science, South Eastern University College (A Constituent College of the University of Nairobi), Kitui, Kenya
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  • Jone Mueke

    1. Department of Zoological Sciences, Kenyatta University, Nairobi, Kenya
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Abstract

A study was carried out in Kakamega forest, in the western region of Kenya, to evaluate the effectiveness of the stingless bee Hypotrigona gribodoi (Magretti, 1884) on the pollination of green pepper. Three treatments were applied and consisted of self-pollination, pollination by feral pollinators in the open field and pollination by H. gribodoi in a net cage. The differences in fruit yield and seed quality were compared among treatments. Flowers pollinated by H. gribodoi produced the heaviest fruits with the highest seed numbers followed by feral pollinators and lastly self-pollinated flowers. Moreover, seeds were significantly bigger in size in fruits resulting from flowers pollinated by H. gribodoi compared to fruits obtained from self-pollinated flowers or flowers pollinated by feral insects. We, therefore, conclude that H. gribodoi is an efficient pollinator of green pepper in the tropical region of East Africa.

Ancillary