Global declines in wild and managed pollinator species have increased the need to evaluate the current status of these populations and understand their needs for sustainability. Farming systems can be a useful place to examine the presence and activity of flower-visiting insects, because the blooming period of the crop provides a predictable floral resource which serves as an attractant to some species. The density and species richness of cotton flower-visiting insects were measured in five conservation and five conventional cotton fields in Mwachisompola, Zambia. Between the two farm types, density and species richness were not significantly different; however, only 33% of the total observed species were found within both farm systems. We found a significant negative relationship between species richness and field size regardless of farm type. Our results suggest that cotton fields attract both pollinator and predatory flower-visiting insects regardless of management, however more work is needed to better understand the effects of field size and surrounding natural areas.
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