The palm Copernicia prunifera, commonly known as carnaúba, can be used for a variety of purposes, from urban forestry to wax extraction from its leaves, the main product of the species, which is used in cosmetics, varnishes, and even for polishing fruit.
The knowledge of the mating systems, as well as preliminary studies, such as reproductive biology, floral structures, and pollinators of a species, are essential to support taxonomy investigations, management strategies, breeding, and domestication of native species.
Thus, we found that the C. prunifera has multiple inflorescences with hermaphroditic flowers and pollen viability of 62%. Outcrossing rates at the population level produced a multilocus outcrossing rate of 0.878 (~88%), indicating that C. prunifera has a mixed mating system that is preferentially allogamous. Floral visits were also recorded by the “maribondo-caboclo” (Polistes canadensis) and by “irapuá” (Trigona spinipes).
That information helps us understand the reproduction mechanism, as well as to define management strategies for the conservation and genetic improvement of the C. prunifera palm. Read more.