Aspire Grant Program Awardee

Erick Bukaka

Ecological study of the structure of the communities of wild bees of Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of Congo)

The main objective of this study is double: first to assess the interaction between the wild bees of Kinshasa and their feeder plants, and second the structuring of the aforesaid bees compared to the local flora. Two stations are targeted in Kinshasa for this study, namely: The Natural Symphonies and the Valley of Funa. In order to describe this structure, the wild bees will be sampled and some aggregative formulas will be applied, namely: Shannon’s diversity formula, Simpson’s formula and equitability formula. The relative abundance of species of bees and plants will be described using some mathematical models of which Motomura’s model, Log-normal model, Broken stick and Zipf-Mandelbrot models. The major interest of this study is based on the key role that the bees occupy in the ecosystems, because, as main pollinators, they constitute an essential stake for nature conservation due to their staple function in the survival of wild spaces, farming and economy, because at this time where wild bee populations are facing massive declines worldwide, our knowledge on these pollinating insects in D.R. Congo, in particular their inter-relations with their associated plants, still remains extremely elementary.