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Sample records for stingless bee honey

  1. Biological and therapeutic effects of honey produced by honey bees and stingless bees: a comparative review

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    Pasupuleti Visweswara Rao

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Honey is a natural product produced by both honey bees and stingless bees. Both types of honey contain unique and distinct types of phenolic and flavonoid compounds of variable biological and clinical importance. Honey is one of the most effective natural products used for wound healing. In this review, the traditional uses and clinical applications of both honey bee and stingless bee honey – such as antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, antihyperlipidemic, and cardioprotective properties; the treatment of eye disorders, gastrointestinal tract diseases, neurological disorders, and fertility disorders and wound healing activity are described.

  2. Stingless bee honey and its potential value: a systematic review

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    Yaacob, M.,

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Modern science has found that most traditional practice of using stingless bee honey has great potential as an added value in modern medicine and considered to have a higher medicinal value than other bee species. However, due to the relatively low output of honey compared to other honey so, focus on this honey is limited. Hence, this systematic review provides the updated result on the potential value of stingless bee honey as an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, cytotoxicity and antimicrobial. The search strategy was developed in four databases (Scopus, Medline and Ovid, EMBASE and PubMed with the search terms "("honey" and "Kelulut", "honey" and "stingless bee", "honey" and "Trigona", "honey" and "pot honey", and "honey" and "Melipon"". The merged data was assessed using PRISMA guidelines and after the duplicates were removed, 1271 articles were segregated. Afterwards, 1232 articles were eliminated because they do not meet the inclusion criteria and 39 articles were reevaluated again for eligibility. Finally, after the evaluation process, only 26 of the articles were chosen for this review. The data of 26 articles of stingless bee honey were deliberated based on antioxidant properties, anti-inflammatory, cytotoxicity and analysis of antimicrobial activity. Three articles reported on antioxidant properties, one article on anti-inflammatory analysis, two articles on cytotoxicity analysis, and twenty articles on analysis of antimicrobial activity. Based on the feasible affirmation from the literature, stingless bee honey has an antioxidant capacity that able to decrease the ROS. ROS able to lead a variety of health problems thus stingless bee honey can be a dietary supplement to overcome this problem.

  3. A new dewatering technique for stingless bees honey

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    Ramli Ahmad Syazwan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available One of the problems faced in stingless bee honey storage is spoilage by the fermentation process occurs in honey due to its high water content. There are a few techniques available currently, but they are time consuming and there is excessive heat involved in the process. The temperature of the process must be kept low because excessive heat can deteriorate nutrition value and biochemical content in honey. Hence, a new method of honey dewatering was developed using a Low Temperature Vacuum Drying (LTVD with induced nucleation technique.The objective of this research is to investigate the performance of a LTVD with induced nucleation to reduce the water content in honey. First, the honey was placed in a pressure vessel, and then air was removed. Then, the honey was slightly heated at 30°C and the water content before and after the experiment was measured by a refractometer. The steps were repeated until the water content reached below 20%. It was found that the LTVD method improved the water removal rate significantly with an average of 0.15% of water content per minute. That is 3 times much faster than the conventional method of low temperature heating by Tabouret. Higher temperature during dewatering process improved the dewatering rate significantly. It can be concluded that LTVD is a promising option in tackling the high water content in stingless bee honey issue.

  4. Thermosonication and optimization of stingless bee honey processing.

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    Chong, K Y; Chin, N L; Yusof, Y A

    2017-10-01

    The effects of thermosonication on the quality of a stingless bee honey, the Kelulut, were studied using processing temperature from 45 to 90 ℃ and processing time from 30 to 120 minutes. Physicochemical properties including water activity, moisture content, color intensity, viscosity, hydroxymethylfurfural content, total phenolic content, and radical scavenging activity were determined. Thermosonication reduced the water activity and moisture content by 7.9% and 16.6%, respectively, compared to 3.5% and 6.9% for conventional heating. For thermosonicated honey, color intensity increased by 68.2%, viscosity increased by 275.0%, total phenolic content increased by 58.1%, and radical scavenging activity increased by 63.0% when compared to its raw form. The increase of hydroxymethylfurfural to 62.46 mg/kg was still within the limits of international standards. Optimized thermosonication conditions using response surface methodology were predicted at 90 ℃ for 111 minutes. Thermosonication was revealed as an effective alternative technique for honey processing.

  5. An insight into the antibiofilm properties of Costa Rican stingless bee honeys

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    Zamora, L.G.; Beukelman, C.J.; Berg, van den A.J.J.; Aerts, P.C.; Quarles van Ufford, H.C.; Nijland, R.; Arias, M.L.

    2017-01-01

    Objective: There is an increasing search for antibiofilm agents that either have specific activity against biofilms or may act in synergy with antimicrobials. Our objective is to examine the the antibiofilm properties of stingless bee honeys. Method: Meliponini honeys from Costa Rica were

  6. Pollination of tomatoes by the stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata and the honey bee Apis mellifera (Hymenoptera, Apidae).

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    dos Santos, S A Bispo; Roselino, A C; Hrncir, M; Bego, L R

    2009-06-30

    The pollination effectiveness of the stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata and the honey bee Apis mellifera was tested in tomato plots. The experiment was conducted in four greenhouses as well as in an external open plot in Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil. The tomato plants were exposed to visits by M. quadrifasciata in one greenhouse and to A. mellifera in another; two greenhouses were maintained without bees (controls) and an open field plot was exposed to pollinators in an area where both honey bee and stingless bee colonies are abundant. We counted the number of tomatoes produced in each plot. Two hundred tomatoes from each plot were weighed, their vertical and transversal circumferences were measured, and the seeds were counted. We collected 253 Chrysomelidae, 17 Halictidae, one Paratrigona sp, and one honey bee from the flowers of the tomato plants in the open area. The largest number of fruits (1414 tomatoes), the heaviest and largest tomatoes, and the ones with the most seed were collected from the greenhouse with stingless bees. Fruits cultivated in the greenhouse with honey bees had the same weight and size as those produced in one of the control greenhouses. The stingless bee, M. quadrifasciata, was significantly more efficient than honey bees in pollinating greenhouse tomatoes.

  7. Sequence and expression pattern of the germ line marker vasa in honey bees and stingless bees

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    2009-01-01

    Queens and workers of social insects differ in the rates of egg laying. Using genomic information we determined the sequence of vasa, a highly conserved gene specific to the germ line of metazoans, for the honey bee and four stingless bees. The vasa sequence of social bees differed from that of other insects in two motifs. By RT-PCR we confirmed the germ line specificity of Amvasa expression in honey bees. In situ hybridization on ovarioles showed that Amvasa is expressed throughout the germarium, except for the transition zone beneath the terminal filament. A diffuse vasa signal was also seen in terminal filaments suggesting the presence of germ line cells. Oocytes showed elevated levels of Amvasa transcripts in the lower germarium and after follicles became segregated. In previtellogenic follicles, Amvasa transcription was detected in the trophocytes, which appear to supply its mRNA to the growing oocyte. A similar picture was obtained for ovarioles of the stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata, except that Amvasa expression was higher in the oocytes of previtellogenic follicles. The social bees differ in this respect from Drosophila, the model system for insect oogenesis, suggesting that changes in the sequence and expression pattern of vasa may have occurred during social evolution. PMID:21637523

  8. Sequence and expression pattern of the germ line marker vasa in honey bees and stingless bees

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    Érica Donato Tanaka

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Queens and workers of social insects differ in the rates of egg laying. Using genomic information we determined the sequence of vasa, a highly conserved gene specific to the germ line of metazoans, for the honey bee and four stingless bees. The vasa sequence of social bees differed from that of other insects in two motifs. By RT-PCR we confirmed the germ line specificity of Amvasa expression in honey bees. In situ hybridization on ovarioles showed that Amvasa is expressed throughout the germarium, except for the transition zone beneath the terminal filament. A diffuse vasa signal was also seen in terminal filaments suggesting the presence of germ line cells. Oocytes showed elevated levels of Amvasa transcripts in the lower germarium and after follicles became segregated. In previtellogenic follicles, Amvasa transcription was detected in the trophocytes, which appear to supply its mRNA to the growing oocyte. A similar picture was obtained for ovarioles of the stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata, except that Amvasa expression was higher in the oocytes of previtellogenic follicles. The social bees differ in this respect from Drosophila, the model system for insect oogenesis, suggesting that changes in the sequence and expression pattern of vasa may have occurred during social evolution.

  9. Electrophoresis characterisation of protein as a method to establish the entomological origin of stingless bee honeys.

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    Ramón-Sierra, Jesús Manuel; Ruiz-Ruiz, Jorge Carlos; de la Luz Ortiz-Vázquez, Elizabeth

    2015-09-15

    Increasing production of stingless-bee honey and the prospect of broader marker for natural and organic products indicate the need to establish parameters to determinate the entomological origin and authenticity of honey. In this research, honeys of Apis mellifera, Melipona beecheii and Trigona spp. were collected in Yucatan, Mexico. Stingless-bee honeys contained more water and less total sugars and reducing sugars. SDS-PAGE patterns show distinctive bands for each kind of honey. The SDS-PAGE pattern of A. mellifera proteins honey showed three bands with molecular weights between 10.2 and 74.8kDa, there were five proteins bands in M. beecheii honey with molecular weights between 6.1 and 97.0kDa and nine for Trigona spp. proteins between 9.3 and 86.7kDa. Conventional physicochemical parameters along with electrophoresis profiles of stingless-bee honeys proteins could be an alternative for determination of entomological origin. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Antimicrobial activity and rutin identification of honey produced by the stingless bee Melipona compressipes manaosensis and commercial honey.

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    Pimentel, Renah Boanerges de Queiroz; da Costa, Cristovão Alves; Albuquerque, Patrícia Melchionna; Junior, Sergio Duvoisin

    2013-07-01

    Honey has been identified as a potential alternative to the widespread use of antibiotics, which are of significant concern considering the emergence of resistant bacteria. In this context, this study aimed to evaluate the antimicrobial activity of honey samples produced by a stingless bee species and by Apis sp. against pathogenic bacteria, as well as to identify the presence of phenolic compounds. Honey samples from the stingless bee M. compressipes manaosensis were collected twice, during the dry and rainy seasons. Three commercial honey samples from Apis sp. were also included in this study. Two different assays were performed to evaluate the antibacterial potential of the honey samples: agar-well diffusion and broth macrodilution. Liquid-liquid extraction was used to assess phenolic compounds from honey. HPLC analysis was performed in order to identify rutin and apigenin on honey samples. Chromatograms were recorded at 340 and 290 nm. Two honey samples were identified as having the highest antimicrobial activity using the agar diffusion method. Honey produced by Melipona compressipes manaosensis inhibited the growth of Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli (0157: H7), Proteus vulgaris, Shigella sonnei and Klebsiella sp. A sample of honey produced by Apis sp. also inhibited the growth of Salmonella paratyphi. The macrodilution technique presented greater sensitivity for the antibacterial testing, since all honey samples showed activity. Flavonoid rutin was identified in the honey sample produced by the stingless bee. Honey samples tested in this work showed antibacterial activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. The results reported herein highlight the potential of using honey to control bacterial growth.

  11. Provenance Establishment of Stingless Bee Honey Using Multi-element Analysis in Combination with Chemometrics Techniques.

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    Shadan, Aidil Fahmi; Mahat, Naji A; Wan Ibrahim, Wan Aini; Ariffin, Zaiton; Ismail, Dzulkiflee

    2018-01-01

    As consumption of stingless bee honey has been gaining popularity in many countries including Malaysia, ability to identify accurately its geographical origin proves pertinent for investigating fraudulent activities for consumer protection. Because a chemical signature can be location-specific, multi-element distribution patterns may prove useful for provenancing such product. Using the inductively coupled-plasma optical emission spectrometer as well as principal component analysis (PCA) and linear discriminant analysis (LDA), the distributions of multi-elements in stingless bee honey collected at four different geographical locations (North, West, East, and South) in Johor, Malaysia, were investigated. While cross-validation using PCA demonstrated 87.0% correct classification rate, the same was improved (96.2%) with the use of LDA, indicating that discrimination was possible for the different geographical regions. Therefore, utilization of multi-element analysis coupled with chemometrics techniques for assigning the provenance of stingless bee honeys for forensic applications is supported. © 2017 American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

  12. Efficiency of local Indonesia honey bees (Apis cerana L.) and stingless bee (Trigona iridipennis) on tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) pollination.

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    Putra, Ramadhani Eka; Kinasih, Ida

    2014-01-01

    Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) is considered as one of major agricultural commodity of Indonesia farming. However, monthly production is unstable due to lack of pollination services. Common pollinator agent of tomatoes is bumblebees which is unsuitable for tropical climate of Indonesia and the possibility of alteration of local wild plant interaction with their pollinator. Indonesia is rich with wild bees and some of the species already domesticated for years with prospect as pollinating agent for tomatoes. This research aimed to assess the efficiency of local honey bee (Apis cerana L.) and stingless bee (Trigona iridipennis), as pollinator of tomato. During this research, total visitation rate and total numbers of pollinated flowers by honey bee and stingless bee were compared between them with bagged flowers as control. Total fruit production, average weight and size also measured in order to correlated pollination efficiency with quantity and quality of fruit produced. Result of this research showed that A. cerana has slightly higher rate of visitation (p>0.05) and significantly shorter handling time (p tomato flowers. However, honey bee pollinated tomato flowers more efficient pollinator than stingless bee (80.3 and 70.2% efficiency, respectively; p tomatoes were similar (p>0.05). Based on the results, it is concluded that the use of Apis cerana and Trigona spp., for pollinating tomatoes in tropical climates could be an alternative to the use of non-native Apis mellifera and bumblebees (Bombus spp.). However, more researches are needed to evaluate the cost/benefit on large-scale farming and greenhouse pollination using both bees against other bee species and pollination methods.

  13. Evaluation of physicochemical and antioxidant properties of two stingless bee honeys: a comparison with Apis mellifera honey from Nsukka, Nigeria.

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    Nweze, Justus Amuche; Okafor, J I; Nweze, Emeka I; Nweze, Julius Eyiuche

    2017-11-06

    Several physical, biochemical and antioxidant properties of two Nigerian stingless bee honey varieties (Melipona sp. and Hypotrigona sp.) were compared with Apis mellifera honey using standard analytical procedures. The mean pH of Apis mellifera, Hypotrigona sp. and Melipona sp. honeys were 4.24 ± 0.28, 3.75 ± 0.11 and 4.21 ± 0.37 respectively. The mean moisture contents of the honeys were 11.74 ± 0.47, 17.50 ± 0.80, and 13.86 ± 1.06%. Honey samples from Hypotrigona sp. when compared with other honey samples had the highest mean total dissolved solids (370.01 ± 22.51 ppm), hydroxymethylfurfural (16.58 ± 0.37 mg/kg), total acidity (35.57 ± 0.42 meq/kg), protein content (16.58 ± 0.37 g/kg), phenol content (527.41 ± 3.60 mg/kg), and ascorbic acid (161.69 ± 6.70 mg/kg), antioxidant equivalent-ascorbic acid assay value (342.33 ± 0.78 mg/kg) as well as ferric reducing power (666.88 ± 1.73 μM Fe(II)/100 g) (p honeys. This is the first study to compare the properties of Nigerian honey bees. Our results suggested that these honeys (specifically Hypotrigona sp. honey) is a good source of antioxidants comparable to A. mellifera honey.

  14. Enhanced production of parthenocarpic cucumbers pollinated with stingless bees and Africanized honey bees in greenhouses

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    Euclides Braga Malheiros

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Crops have different levels of dependence on pollinators; this holds true even for cultivars of the same species, as in the case of cucumber (Cucumis sativus. The aim of this research was to assess the attractiveness of flowers of three Japanese parthenocarpic cucumber cultivars and evaluate the importance of Africanized bees (Apis mellifera, and the Brazilian native stingless bees, Jataí (Tetragonisca angustula and Iraí (Nannotrigona testaceicornis on fruit production. Several parameters, including frequency of bee visits to flowers as well as duration of nectar collection and fruit set were examined; additionally, fruit weight, length and diameter were evaluated. Three greenhouses located in Ribeirão Preto, SP, were used for planting three cucumber cultivars (Hokushin, Yoshinari and Soudai. The female flowers were more attractive than male flowers; however, Jataí bees were not observed visiting the flowers. The Africanized and the Iraí bees collected only nectar, with a visitation peak between 10 and 12h. Visits to female flowers had a longer duration than visits to male flower visits in all three cultivars. Africanized bee colonies declined due to loss of bees while in the greenhouse; the native stingless bee colonies did not suffer these losses. When bees were excluded, fruit set was 78%; however, when bees had access to the flowers, fruit set was significantly (19.2% higher. Fruit size and weight did not differ with and without bees. This demonstrates that even in parthenocarpic cucumber cultivars, which do not require pollination in order to from fruits, fruit production is significantly increased by bee pollination.

  15. An insight into the antibiofilm properties of Costa Rican stingless bee honeys.

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    Zamora, L G; Beukelman, C J; van den Berg, A J J; Aerts, P C; Quarles van Ufford, H C; Nijland, R; Arias, M L

    2017-04-02

    There is an increasing search for antibiofilm agents that either have specific activity against biofilms or may act in synergy with antimicrobials. Our objective is to examine the the antibiofilm properties of stingless bee honeys. Meliponini honeys from Costa Rica were examined along with Medihoney as a reference. All honeys were submitted to a screening composed of minimum inhibitory concentration, inhibition of biofilm formation and biofilm destruction microplate-based assays against a Staphylococcus aureus biofilm forming strain. Dialysis led to the isolation of an antibiofilm fraction in Tetragonisca angustula honeys. The honey antibiofilm fraction was evaluated for protease activity and for any synergistic effect with antibiotics on a Staphylococcus aureus biofilm. The active fraction was then separated through activity guided isolation techniques involving SDS-PAGEs, anion exchange and size exclusion fast protein liquid chromatographies. The fractions obtained and the isolated antibiofilm constituents were tested for amylase and DNase activity. A total of 57 Meliponini honeys from Costa Rica were studied in this research. The honeys studied belonged to the Tetragonisca angustula (n=36) and Melipona beecheii (n=21) species. Costa Rican Tetragonisca angustula honeys can inhibit the planktonic growth, biofilm formation, and are capable of destroying a Staphylococcus aureus biofilm. The antibiofilm effect was observed in the protein fraction of Tetragonisca angustula honeys. The biofilm destruction proteins allowed ampicillin and vancomycin to recover their antimicrobial activity over a Staphylococcus aureus biofilm. The antibiofilm proteins are of bee origin, and their activity was not due to serine, cysteine or metalloproteases. There were 2 proteins causing the antibiofilm action; these were named the Tetragonisca angustula biofilm destruction factors (TABDFs). TABDF-1 is a monomeric protein of approximately 50kDa that is responsible of the amylase activity

  16. Sensory and volatile profiles of monofloral honeys produced by native stingless bees of the brazilian semiarid region.

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    Costa, Ana Caroliny Vieira da; Sousa, Janaína Maria Batista; da Silva, Maria Aparecida Azevedo Pereira; Garruti, Deborah Dos Santos; Madruga, Marta Suely

    2018-03-01

    Monofloral honeys produced by stingless bees M. subnitida Ducke and M. scutellaris Latrelle in typical flowering of the Brazilian semi-arid Ziziphus juazeiro Mart (juazeiro), Croton heliotropiifolius Kunth (velame branco) and Mimosa arenosa willd Poir (jurema branca) were characterized in relation to volatile and sensorial profile. It identified 11 sensory descriptors and 96 volatile compounds. It was noticed a strong effect of flowering in sensorial profile and volatile of honeys. Juazeiro honey stood out with a higher characteristic aroma, taste sweet, caramel flavor and levels of aromatic aldehydes; jurema honey has been described with herb and beeswax aroma and the presence of sulfur compounds and ketones; volatile acids associated with acid taste, medicinal taste and clove aroma characterized the velame branco honey. These results demonstrate that the knowledge of the sensory and aroma profile of these honeys can contribute to characterization of its floral and geographical identity. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. The influence of additional water content towards the spectroscopy and physicochemical properties of genus Apis and stingless bee honey

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    Omar, Ahmad Fairuz; Mardziah Yahaya, Ommi Kalsom; Tan, Kok Chooi; Mail, Mohd Hafiz; Seeni, Azman

    2016-04-01

    The major issues concerning to food products are related to its authenticity. Honey is one of the common food products that suffer from adulteration, mainly due to its constant high market demand and price. Several studies on the authenticity detection have been done mainly on honey from genus Apis (GA), but less research has been conducted on Stingless Bee Honey (SBH) even the market demand for this food product is increasing, particularly in Malaysia due to its possible health benefits. Thus, identification of unadulterated and authenticity of honey is a very key issue for products processors, retailers, consumers and regulatory authorities. There is an increasing demand for appropriate instruments and methods to shield consumers against fraud and to guarantee a fair competition between honey producers. The study presented in this paper shows the effect of diluting pure honey from both genus Apis and Stingless Bee towards its physicochemical attributes (i.e. soluble solids content and pH) and VIS-NIR spectral absorbance features.

  18. Temporal Variation in Honey Production by the Stingless Bee Melipona subnitida (Hymenoptera: Apidae): Long-Term Management Reveals its Potential as a Commercial Species in Northeastern Brazil.

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    Koffler, Sheina; Menezes, Cristiano; Menezes, Paulo Roberto; Kleinert, Astrid de Matos Peixoto; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera Lucia; Pope, Nathaniel; Jaffé, Rodolfo

    2015-06-01

    Even though stingless beekeeping has a great potential as a sustainable development tool, the activity remains essentially informal, technical knowledge is scarce, and management practices lack the sophistication and standardization found in apiculture. Here, we contributed to the further development of stingless beekeeping by investigating the long-term impact of management and climate on honey production and colony survival in the stingless bee Melipona subnitida Ducke (1910). We analyzed a 10-yr record of 155 M. subnitida colonies kept by a commercial honey producer of northeastern Brazil. This constitutes the longest and most accurate record available for a stingless bee. We modeled honey production in relation to time (years), age, management practices (colony division and food supplementation), and climatic factors (temperature and precipitation), and used a model selection approach to identify which factors best explained honey production. We also modeled colony mortality in relation to climatic factors. Although the amount of honey produced by each colony decreased over time, we found that the probability of producing honey increased over the years. Colony divisions decreased honey production, but did not affect honey presence, while supplementary feeding positively affected honey production. In warmer years, the probability of producing honey decreased and the amount of honey produced was lower. In years with lower precipitation, fewer colonies produced honey. In contrast, colony mortality was not affected by climatic factors, and some colonies lived up to nine years, enduring extreme climatic conditions. Our findings provide useful guidelines to improve management and honey production in stingless bees. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Screening for quality indicators and phenolic compounds of biotechnological interest in honey samples from six species of stingless bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae

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    Rosane Gomes de OLIVEIRA

    Full Text Available Abstract Honey from stingless bees of the genus Melipona is a well sought product. Nevertheless lack of legal frameworks for quality assessment complicates the evaluation of food safety and marketing of these products. Seeking to assess the quality of honey from the bees of this genus, physical and chemical analyses, identification of phenolic compounds, and microbiological evaluation from six species of stingless bees was performed. The honey samples showed high reducing sugars, low protein levels and a balanced microbiota. High total phenols and flavonoids and higher antioxidant activity were also recorded. Different phenolic compounds of great biotechnological potential were identified and of these apigenin, kaempferol and luteolin were identified for the first time in honey. To the best of our knowledge, this is one of the few works describing a detail characterization of melipona honey together with identification of the phenolic compounds of significant therapeutic value.

  20. Antimicrobial activity of honey of africanized bee (Apis mellifera) and stingless bee, tiuba (Melipona fasciculata) against strains of Escherichia coli, Pseudomona aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus

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    Tenório, Eleuza Gomes; Alves, Natália Furtado; Mendes, Bianca Evanita Pimenta

    2017-11-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the antimicrobial activity of honey of Africanized bees (Apis mellifera) and stingless bees (Melipona fasciculata), produced under the same flowering conditions, in municipalities of Baixada Maranhese, Brazil, against strains of pathogenic bacteria, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus. In each municipality, the apiary and meliponario were less than 150 meters away from each other. The Kirby-Bauer method, and the diffusion technique of the agar plate through the extension of the inhibition in millimeters were used. The test results were negative for all samples, which did not demonstrate antimicrobial activity in any of the microorganisms tested.

  1. Hygienic behaviour in Brazilian stingless bees

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    Alves, Denise A.; Bento, José M. S.; Marchini, Luis C.; Ratnieks, Francis L. W.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Social insects have many defence mechanisms against pests and pathogens. One of these is hygienic behaviour, which has been studied in detail in the honey bee, Apis mellifera. Hygienic honey bee workers remove dead and diseased larvae and pupae from sealed brood cells, thereby reducing disease transfer within the colony. Stingless bees, Meliponini, also rear broods in sealed cells. We investigated hygienic behaviour in three species of Brazilian stingless bees (Melipona scutellaris, Scaptotrigona depilis, Tetragonisca angustula) in response to freeze-killed brood. All three species had high mean levels of freeze-killed brood removal after 48 h ∼99% in M. scutellaris, 80% in S. depilis and 62% in T. angustula (N=8 colonies per species; three trials per colony). These levels are greater than in unselected honey bee populations, ∼46%. In S. depilis there was also considerable intercolony variation, ranging from 27% to 100% removal after 2 days. Interestingly, in the S. depilis colony with the slowest removal of freeze-killed brood, 15% of the adult bees emerging from their cells had shrivelled wings indicating a disease or disorder, which is as yet unidentified. Although the gross symptoms resembled the effects of deformed wing virus in the honey bee, this virus was not detected in the samples. When brood comb from the diseased colony was introduced to the other S. depilis colonies, there was a significant negative correlation between freeze-killed brood removal and the emergence of deformed worker bees (P=0.001), and a positive correlation with the cleaning out of brood cells (P=0.0008). This shows that the more hygienic colonies were detecting and removing unhealthy brood prior to adult emergence. Our results indicate that hygienic behaviour may play an important role in colony health in stingless bees. The low levels of disease normally seen in stingless bees may be because they have effective mechanisms of disease management, not because they lack

  2. Hygienic behaviour in Brazilian stingless bees

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    Hasan Al Toufailia

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Social insects have many defence mechanisms against pests and pathogens. One of these is hygienic behaviour, which has been studied in detail in the honey bee, Apis mellifera. Hygienic honey bee workers remove dead and diseased larvae and pupae from sealed brood cells, thereby reducing disease transfer within the colony. Stingless bees, Meliponini, also rear broods in sealed cells. We investigated hygienic behaviour in three species of Brazilian stingless bees (Melipona scutellaris, Scaptotrigona depilis, Tetragonisca angustula in response to freeze-killed brood. All three species had high mean levels of freeze-killed brood removal after 48 h ∼99% in M. scutellaris, 80% in S. depilis and 62% in T. angustula (N=8 colonies per species; three trials per colony. These levels are greater than in unselected honey bee populations, ∼46%. In S. depilis there was also considerable intercolony variation, ranging from 27% to 100% removal after 2 days. Interestingly, in the S. depilis colony with the slowest removal of freeze-killed brood, 15% of the adult bees emerging from their cells had shrivelled wings indicating a disease or disorder, which is as yet unidentified. Although the gross symptoms resembled the effects of deformed wing virus in the honey bee, this virus was not detected in the samples. When brood comb from the diseased colony was introduced to the other S. depilis colonies, there was a significant negative correlation between freeze-killed brood removal and the emergence of deformed worker bees (P=0.001, and a positive correlation with the cleaning out of brood cells (P=0.0008. This shows that the more hygienic colonies were detecting and removing unhealthy brood prior to adult emergence. Our results indicate that hygienic behaviour may play an important role in colony health in stingless bees. The low levels of disease normally seen in stingless bees may be because they have effective mechanisms of disease management, not because

  3. Phylogenetic analysis of Monascus and new species from honey, pollen and nests of stingless bees

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Barbosa, R. N.; Leong, Su-lin L.; Vinnere-Pettersson, O.

    2017-01-01

    on this polyphasic approach, the genus Monascus is resolved in nine species, including three new species associated with stingless bees (M. flavipigmentosus sp. nov., M. mellicola sp. nov., M. recifensis sp. nov., M. argentinensis, M. floridanus, M. lunisporas, M. pallens, M. purpureus, M. ruber), and split in two...... new sections (section Floridani sect. nov., section Rubri sect. nov.). Phylogenetic analysis showed that the xerophile Monascus eremophilus does not belong in Monascus and monophyly in Monascus is restored with the transfer of M. eremophilus to Penicillium (P. eremophilum comb. nov.). A list...

  4. Physicochemical characteristics and sensory profile of honey samples from stingless bees (Apidae: Meliponinae submitted to a dehumidification process

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    Carlos A.L. Carvalho

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available This study was conducted to evaluate the effect of a dehumidification process on the physicochemical and sensory characteristics of stingless-bee honey. Melipona scutellaris and M. quadrifasciata honey samples were submitted to a dehumidification process and to physicochemical (reducing sugars, apparent sucrose, moisture, diastatic activity, hydroxymethylfurfural, ash, pH, acidity, and electric conductivity and sensory evaluations (fluidity, color, aroma, crystallization,flavor,and acceptability. The results indicated that the dehumidification process does not interfere with honey quality and acceptability.Este estudo foi conduzido com o objetivo de avaliar o efeito do processo de desumidificação sobre as características físico-químicas e sensoriais do mel das abelhas sem ferrão. Amostras de méis de Melipona scutellaris e M. quadrifasciata foram submetidas ao processo de desumidificação, passando em seguida por avaliações físico-químicas (açúcares redutores, sacarose aparente, umidade, atividade diastásica, hidroximetilfurfural, cinzas, pH, acidez e condutividade elétrica e sensoriais (fluidez, cor, aroma, cristalização, sabor e aceitabilidade. Os resultados indicaram que o processo de desumidificação não interfere na qualidade e aceitabilidade do mel.

  5. Behavioral response of two species of stingless bees and the honey bee (Hymenoptera: Apidae) to GF-120.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez-Escobar, Enoc; Liedo, Pablo; Montoya, Pablo; Vandame, Rémy; Sánchez, Daniel

    2014-08-01

    We present the results of evaluating the response of three species of bees, Trigona fulviventris (Guérin), Scaptotrigona mexicana (Guérin-Meneville), and Apis mellifera (L.), to food sources baited with the toxic bait GF-120 (NF Naturalyte), a spinosad-based bait exclusively used to manage fruit flies. Groups of foragers were trained to collect honey and water from a feeder located 50 m from the colonies. Once a sufficient number of foragers were observed at the experimental location, the training feeder was changed to two or three feeders that offered either honey and water, GF-120, Captor (hydrolyzed protein), GF-120 and honey (4:6), or Captor and honey (1:19). T fulviventris and S. mexicana rarely visited GF-120, Captor, or their mixtures with honey, while approximately 28.5 and 1.5% of A. mellifera foragers visited the GF-120 and honey and Captor and honey mixtures, respectively. Our results show that GF-120 clearly repels T. fulviventris and S. mexicana, whereas for A. mellifera, repellence is not as marked when GF-120 is combined with highly nutritious substances like honey.

  6. Antibacterial effects of Apis mellifera and stingless bees honeys on susceptible and resistant strains of Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Klebsiella pneumoniae in Gondar, Northwest Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewnetu, Yalemwork; Lemma, Wossenseged; Birhane, Nega

    2013-10-19

    Honey is a natural substance produced by honeybees and has nutritional and therapeutic uses. In Ethiopia, honeys are used traditionally to treat wounds, respiratory infections and diarrhoea. Recent increase of drug resistant bacteria against the existing antibiotics forced investigators to search for alternative natural remedies and evaluate their potential use on scientific bases. Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate the antibacterial effects of different types of honeys in Ethiopia which are used traditionally to treat different types of respiratory and gastrointestinal infections. Mueller Hinton agar (70191) diffusion and nutrient broth culture medium assays were performed to determine susceptibility of Staphylococcus aureus (ATCC 25923), Escherichia coli (ATCC 25922) and resistant clinical isolates (Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus(MRSA), Escherichia coli(R) and Klebsiella pneumoniae (R), using honeys of Apis mellifera and stingless bees in northern and north western Ethiopia. Honey of the stingless bees produced the highest mean inhibition (22.27 ± 3.79 mm) compared to white honey (21.0 ± 2.7 mm) and yellow honey (18.0 ± 2.3 mm) at 50% (v/v) concentration on all the standard and resistant strains. Stingless bees honey was found to have Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC) of 6.25% (6.25 mg/ml) for 80% of the test organisms compared to 40% for white and yellow Apis mellifera honeys. All the honeys were found to have minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) of 12.5% (12.5 mg/ml) against all the test organisms. Staphylococcus aureus (ATCC 25923) was susceptible to amoxicillin, methicillin, kanamycine, tetracycline, and vancomycine standard antibiotic discs used for susceptibility tests. Similarly, Escherichia coli (ATCC 25922) was found susceptible for kanamycine, tetracycline and vancomycine. Escherichia coli (ATCC 25922) has not been tested for amoxicillin ampicillin and methicillin. The susceptibility tests performed against

  7. Antimicrobial activity of honey of stingless bees, tiúba (Melipona fasciculata) and jandaira (Melipona subnitida) compared to the strains of Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tenório, Eleuza Gomes; de Jesus, Natália Rocha; Nascimento, Adenilde Ribeiro; Teles, Amanda Mara

    2015-12-01

    This study aimed to investigate the antimicrobial activity of honeys of stingless bees produced in Maranhão, tiúba (Melipona fasciculata) and jandaira (Melipona subnitida), opposite the strains of pathogenic bacteria, namely, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The honey samples were collected from different regions of Maranhão. Of the 17 samples collected, twelve samples were honey M. fasciculata and five were honey M. subnitida. We used the Kirby-Bauer method, and the technique of agar disk diffusion through the extent of inhibition in milimetros. Results were negative for all samples from M. fasciculata. However, the tests for M. subnitida demonstrated bacteriostatic halos ranging from 12 to 32,6mm.

  8. Organochlorine Pesticides in Honey and Pollen Samples from Managed Colonies of the Honey Bee Apis mellifera Linnaeus and the Stingless Bee Scaptotrigona mexicana Guérin from Southern, Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Toledo, Jovani; Vandame, Rémy; Castro-Chan, Ricardo Alberto; Penilla-Navarro, Rosa Patricia; Gómez, Jaime; Sánchez, Daniel

    2018-05-10

    In this paper, we show the results of investigating the presence of organochlorine pesticides in honey and pollen samples from managed colonies of the honey bee, Apis mellifera L. and of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona mexicana Guérin. Three colonies of each species were moved into each of two sites. Three samples of pollen and three samples of honey were collected from each colony: the first collection occurred at the beginning of the study and the following ones at every six months during a year. Thus the total number of samples collected was 36 for honey (18 for A. mellifera and 18 for S. mexicana ) and 36 for pollen (18 for A. mellifera and 18 for S. mexicana ). We found that 88.44% and 93.33% of honey samples, and 22.22% and 100% of pollen samples of S. mexicana and A. mellifera , respectively, resulted positive to at least one organochlorine. The most abundant pesticides were Heptaclor (44% of the samples), γ-HCH (36%), DDT (19%), Endrin (18%) and DDE (11%). Despite the short foraging range of S. mexicana , the number of pesticides quantified in the honey samples was similar to that of A. mellifera . Paradoxically we found a small number of organochlorines in pollen samples of S. mexicana in comparison to A. mellifera , perhaps indicating a low abundance of pollen sources within the foraging range of this species.

  9. Organochlorine Pesticides in Honey and Pollen Samples from Managed Colonies of the Honey Bee Apis mellifera Linnaeus and the Stingless Bee Scaptotrigona mexicana Guérin from Southern, Mexico

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    Jovani Ruiz-Toledo

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we show the results of investigating the presence of organochlorine pesticides in honey and pollen samples from managed colonies of the honey bee, Apis mellifera L. and of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona mexicana Guérin. Three colonies of each species were moved into each of two sites. Three samples of pollen and three samples of honey were collected from each colony: the first collection occurred at the beginning of the study and the following ones at every six months during a year. Thus the total number of samples collected was 36 for honey (18 for A. mellifera and 18 for S. mexicana and 36 for pollen (18 for A. mellifera and 18 for S. mexicana. We found that 88.44% and 93.33% of honey samples, and 22.22% and 100% of pollen samples of S. mexicana and A. mellifera, respectively, resulted positive to at least one organochlorine. The most abundant pesticides were Heptaclor (44% of the samples, γ-HCH (36%, DDT (19%, Endrin (18% and DDE (11%. Despite the short foraging range of S. mexicana, the number of pesticides quantified in the honey samples was similar to that of A. mellifera. Paradoxically we found a small number of organochlorines in pollen samples of S. mexicana in comparison to A. mellifera, perhaps indicating a low abundance of pollen sources within the foraging range of this species.

  10. Chemical Ecology of Stingless Bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonhardt, Sara Diana

    2017-04-01

    Stingless bees (Hymenoptera, Apidae: Meliponini) represent a highly diverse group of social bees confined to the world's tropics and subtropics. They show a striking diversity of structural and behavioral adaptations and are important pollinators of tropical plants. Despite their diversity and functional importance, their ecology, and especially chemical ecology, has received relatively little attention, particularly compared to their relative the honeybee, Apis mellifera. Here, I review various aspects of the chemical ecology of stingless bees, from communication over resource allocation to defense. I list examples in which functions of specific compounds (or compound groups) have been demonstrated by behavioral experiments, and show that many aspects (e.g., queen-worker interactions, host-parasite interactions, neuronal processing etc.) remain little studied. This review further reveals that the vast majority of studies on the chemical ecology of stingless bees have been conducted in the New World, whereas studies on Old World stingless bees are still comparatively rare. Given the diversity of species, behaviors and, apparently, chemical compounds used, I suggest that stingless bees provide an ideal subject for studying how functional context and the need for species specificity may interact to shape pheromone diversification in social insects.

  11. Characterization of Bioactive Constituents from Honey Produced by Costa Rican Stingless Bees

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zamora Fallas, L.G.

    2018-01-01

    Antimicrobial resistance created the need for innovations in topical treatments for wound healing. This thesis comprises a series of investigations that allowed Costa Rican Tetragonisca angustula honeys to pass from being a highly regarded traditional medicine to becoming a novel candidate for wound

  12. Foraging on some nonfloral resources by stingless bees (Hymenoptera, Meliponini in a caatinga region

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    M. C. A. Lorenzon

    Full Text Available In a caatinga region the flowers and nonfloral resources visited by highly eusocial bees, stingless beess and Apis mellifera (Africanized honey bee were studied. During one year, monthly sampling took place in two sites at Serra da Capivara National Park (Piauí State, Brazil, one of them, including the local village, outside the park, and the other inside, using already existing park trails. With the help of entomological nets, all bees were caught while visiting floral and nonfloral resources. At the study sites we observed more stingless bees in nonfloral resources, made possible by human presence. Twelve stingless bee species used the nonfloral resources in different proportions, showing no preference for time of day, season of the year, or sites. During the rainy season, more water sources and abundant flowering plants were observed, which attract stingless bees, even though many worker bees were found foraging in the aqueous substrates while few were observed at water sources. This relationship was higher for stingless bee species than for Africanized honey bees. Paratrigona lineata was represented by few specimens in floral and nonfloral resources and is perhaps rare in this region. Frieseomelitta silvestrii could be considered rare in the floral resources, but they were abundant in nonfloral resources. The variety and intriguing abundance of bees in nonfloral resources suggests that these are an important part of the stingless bee niches, even if these resources are used for nest construction and defense.

  13. Building Walkways: Observation on Nest Duplication of Stingless Bee Trigona iridipennins Smith (1854

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    Preeti S. Virkar

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Beekeeping for honey and other bee products is an age old practice. Besides the popular honeybees, Apis cerana and Apis mellifera, stingless bees belonging to the tribe Meliponini, subfamily Apinae and family Apidae (Michener, 2007 are also reared for honey, having high medicinal value. Stingless bees are exclusive to tropics and their size ranges from 2mm to slightly bigger than the popular honeybee A. mellifera (O'Toole & Raw, 1999. The practice of keeping stingless bees is called meliponiculture, and once it was an integral part of the culture of indigenous people of South and Central America. It held a social and religious significance in the meso-American culture, mainly the ancient Mayans (Sommeijer, 1999. Stingless bee products such as honey, wax and propolis formed a small-scale economy in their livelihood as well (Cortopassi-Laurino et al., 2006. Although least explored, meliponiculture is an age old practice in India also. Kani tribe in Western Ghats is the only reported reference, keeping stingless bees (Kumar et al., 2012. Trigona iridipennis is the widespread stingless bee species in the Indian subcontinent and used for meliponiculture.

  14. Bee Alert: Africanized Honey Bee Facts

    OpenAIRE

    Lazaneo, Vincent

    2002-01-01

    Information on how to “bee prepared” for the movement of the Africanized honey bee into California. Includes tips on how to identify Africanized honey bees, bee-proofing your home, and what to do if stung.

  15. Combined antibacterial activity of stingless bee (Apis mellipodae) honey and garlic (Allium sativum) extracts against standard and clinical pathogenic bacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andualem, Berhanu

    2013-01-01

    Objective To investigate the synergic antibacterial activity of garlic and tazma honey against standard and clinical pathogenic bacteria. Methods Antimicrobial activity of tazma honey, garlic and mixture of them against pathogenic bacteria were determined. Chloramphenicol and water were used as positive and negative controls, respectively. Minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) and minimum bactericidal concentration of antimicrobial samples were determined using standard methods. Results Inhibition zone of mixture of garlic and tazma honey against all tested pathogens was significantly (P≤0.05) greater than garlic and tazma honey alone. The diameter zone of inhibition ranged from (18±1) to (35±1) mm for mixture of garlic and tazma honey, (12±1) to (20±1) mm for tazma honey and (14±1) to (22±1) mm for garlic as compared with (10±1) to (30±1) mm for chloramphenicol. The combination of garlic and tazma honey (30-35 mm) was more significantly (P≤0.05) effective against Salmonella (NCTC 8385), Staphylococcus aureus (ATCC 25923), Lyesria moncytogenes (ATCC 19116) and Streptococcus pneumonia (ATCC 63). Results also showed considerable antimicrobial activity of garlic and tazma honey. MIC of mixture of garlic and tazma honey at 6.25% against total test bacteria was 88.9%. MIC of mixture of garlic and tazma honey at 6.25% against Gram positive and negative were 100% and 83.33%, respectively. The bactericidal activities of garlic, tazma honey, and mixture of garlic and tazma honey against all pathogenic bacteria at 6.25% concentration were 66.6%, 55.6% and 55.6%, respectively. Conclusions This finding strongly supports the claim of the local community to use the combination of tazma honey and garlic for the treatment of different pathogenic bacterial infections. Therefore, garlic in combination with tazma honey can serve as an alternative natural antimicrobial drug for the treatment of pathogenic bacterial infections. Further in vivo study is recommended to come

  16. Diversity, local knowledge and use of stingless bees (Apidae: Meliponini) in the municipality of Nocupétaro, Michoacan, Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes-González, Alejandro; Camou-Guerrero, Andrés; Reyes-Salas, Octavio; Argueta, Arturo; Casas, Alejandro

    2014-06-05

    Stingless bees were significant resources managed by Mesoamerican peoples during pre-Columbian times and remain important in particular areas. Our study aimed at inventorying stingless bees' species, traditional knowledge and forms of use and management of them at the municipality of Nocupetaro, Michoacán, Mexico, a region of the Balsas River Basin. We inventoried the stingless bees of the municipality of Nocupétaro, Michoacán, México, through extensive collecting of bee specimens in different vegetation types. We then conducted semi-structured interviews to local experts in order to document their knowledge and management techniques of stingless bees' species. We identified a total of eight stingless bees' species in the study area as well as three additional unidentified taxa recognized by people through the local names. Our inventory included one new record of species for the region (Lestrimelitta chamelensis Ayala, 1999). The taxa identified are all used by local people. Scaptotrigona hellwegeri Friese, 1900; Melipona fasciata Latreille, 1811; Frieseomelitta nigra Cresson, 1878 and Geotrigona acapulconis Strand, 1919 are particularly valued as food (honey), medicinal (honey and pollen), and material for handcrafts (wax). All species recorded are wild and their products are obtained through gathering. On average, local experts were able to collect 4 nests of stingless bees per year obtaining on average 6 L of honey and 4 Kg of wax but some came to collect up 10-12 hives per year (18 L of honey and 24 Kg of wax). Local knowledge about use, management and ecological issues on stingless bees is persistent and deep in the study area. Information about this group of bees is progressively scarcer in Mexico and significant effort should be done from ethnobiological and ecological perspectives in order to complement the national inventory of bee resources and traditional knowledge and management of them.

  17. Are Isomeric Alkenes Used in Species Recognition among Neo-Tropical Stingless Bees (Melipona Spp).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Stephen J; Shemilt, Sue; da S Lima, Cândida B; de Carvalho, Carlos A L

    2017-12-01

    Our understanding of the role of cuticular hydrocarbons (CHC) in recognition is based largely on temperate ant species and honey bees. The stingless bees remain relatively poorly studied, despite being the largest group of eusocial bees, comprising more than 400 species in some 60 genera. The Meliponini and Apini diverged between 80-130 Myr B.P. so the evolutionary trajectories that shaped the chemical communication systems in ants, honeybees and stingless bees may be very different. The aim of this study was to study if a unique species CHC signal existed in Neotropical stingless bees, as has been shown for many temperate species, and what compounds are involved. This was achieved by collecting CHC data from 24 colonies belonging to six species of Melipona from North-Eastern Brazil and comparing the results with previously published CHC studies on Melipona. We found that each of the eleven Melipona species studied so far each produced a unique species CHC signal based around their alkene isomer production. A remarkable number of alkene isomers, up to 25 in M. asilvai, indicated the diversification of alkene positional isomers among the stingless bees. The only other group to have really diversified in alkene isomer production are the primitively eusocial Bumblebees (Bombus spp), which are the sister group of the stingless bees. Furthermore, among the eleven Neotropical Melipona species we could detect no effect of the environment on the proportion of alkane production as has been suggested for some other species.

  18. Bees for development: Brazilian survey reveals how to optimize stingless beekeeping.

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    Rodolfo Jaffé

    Full Text Available Stingless bees are an important asset to assure plant biodiversity in many natural ecosystems, and fulfill the growing agricultural demand for pollination. However, across developing countries stingless beekeeping remains an essentially informal activity, technical knowledge is scarce, and management practices lack standardization. Here we profited from the large diversity of stingless beekeepers found in Brazil to assess the impact of particular management practices on productivity and economic revenues from the commercialization of stingless bee products. Our study represents the first large-scale effort aiming at optimizing stingless beekeeping for honey/colony production based on quantitative data. Survey data from 251 beekeepers scattered across 20 Brazilian States revealed the influence of specific management practices and other confounding factors over productivity and income indicators. Specifically, our results highlight the importance of teaching beekeepers how to inspect and feed their colonies, how to multiply them and keep track of genetic lineages, how to harvest and preserve the honey, how to use vinegar traps to control infestation by parasitic flies, and how to add value by labeling honey containers. Furthermore, beekeeping experience and the network of known beekeepers were found to be key factors influencing productivity and income. Our work provides clear guidelines to optimize stingless beekeeping and help transform the activity into a powerful tool for sustainable development.

  19. Bees for development: Brazilian survey reveals how to optimize stingless beekeeping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaffé, Rodolfo; Pope, Nathaniel; Torres Carvalho, Airton; Madureira Maia, Ulysses; Blochtein, Betina; de Carvalho, Carlos Alfredo Lopes; Carvalho-Zilse, Gislene Almeida; Freitas, Breno Magalhães; Menezes, Cristiano; Ribeiro, Márcia de Fátima; Venturieri, Giorgio Cristino; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera Lucia

    2015-01-01

    Stingless bees are an important asset to assure plant biodiversity in many natural ecosystems, and fulfill the growing agricultural demand for pollination. However, across developing countries stingless beekeeping remains an essentially informal activity, technical knowledge is scarce, and management practices lack standardization. Here we profited from the large diversity of stingless beekeepers found in Brazil to assess the impact of particular management practices on productivity and economic revenues from the commercialization of stingless bee products. Our study represents the first large-scale effort aiming at optimizing stingless beekeeping for honey/colony production based on quantitative data. Survey data from 251 beekeepers scattered across 20 Brazilian States revealed the influence of specific management practices and other confounding factors over productivity and income indicators. Specifically, our results highlight the importance of teaching beekeepers how to inspect and feed their colonies, how to multiply them and keep track of genetic lineages, how to harvest and preserve the honey, how to use vinegar traps to control infestation by parasitic flies, and how to add value by labeling honey containers. Furthermore, beekeeping experience and the network of known beekeepers were found to be key factors influencing productivity and income. Our work provides clear guidelines to optimize stingless beekeeping and help transform the activity into a powerful tool for sustainable development.

  20. Not Only Single Mating in Stingless Bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paxton, Robert J.; Weißschuh, Nicole; Engels, Wolf; Hartfelder, Klaus; Quezada-Euan, J. Javier G.

    Queens of the large, pantropical and fully eusocial taxon Meliponinae (stingless bees) are generally considered to be singly mated. We indirectly estimated queen mating frequency in two meliponids, Melipona beecheii and Scaptotrigona postica, by examining genotypes of workers at microsatellite DNA loci. Microsatellites were highly variable, providing suitable markers with which to assign patrilinial origin of workers within colonies headed by single queens. Queen mating frequency varied between 1 and 3 (M. beecheii) and 1 and 6 (S. postica), representing the first clear documentation of polyandry in the Meliponinae. Effective paternity frequency, me, was lower, although above 2 for S. postica. Stingless bees may provide suitable subjects for the testing of recent inclusive fitness arguments describing intracolony kin conflict in social Hymenoptera.

  1. A new cooling technique for stingless bees hive

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    Ramli Ahmad Syazwan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Stingless bees are a type of insect that are very sensitive to the changes of their surroundings, especially to severe heat wave. A report stated that at temperature as high as 38°C can cause death of bees especially to the pupae. Therefore, the objective of this research is to evaluate a new method in regulating the temperature in the hive. Greenroof, a type of roof which contains green vegetation and soil, was used as the cooling method in this study. Two units of MUSTAFA-hives were exposed under sunlight, one is without temperature control and another one was fitted greenroof. The temperatures inside each hive was measured at two points and was compared with the hive without temperature control. It was found that, for the hive integrated with greenroof, the average hive temperature was about 3°C and 6°C lower in the honey cassette and brood-cells compartment, respectively. Therefore, it can be concluded that the implementation of greenroof could solve the problem of stingless bee hive overheating, and the greenroof has an impressive cooling performance besides being an economic and simple solution.

  2. Diversity, local knowledge and use of stingless bees (Apidae: Meliponini) in the municipality of Nocupétaro, Michoacan, Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Background Stingless bees were significant resources managed by Mesoamerican peoples during pre-Columbian times and remain important in particular areas. Our study aimed at inventorying stingless bees’ species, traditional knowledge and forms of use and management of them at the municipality of Nocupetaro, Michoacán, Mexico, a region of the Balsas River Basin. Methods We inventoried the stingless bees of the municipality of Nocupétaro, Michoacán, México, through extensive collecting of bee specimens in different vegetation types. We then conducted semi-structured interviews to local experts in order to document their knowledge and management techniques of stingless bees’ species. Results We identified a total of eight stingless bees’ species in the study area as well as three additional unidentified taxa recognized by people through the local names. Our inventory included one new record of species for the region (Lestrimelitta chamelensis Ayala, 1999). The taxa identified are all used by local people. Scaptotrigona hellwegeri Friese, 1900; Melipona fasciata Latreille, 1811; Frieseomelitta nigra Cresson, 1878 and Geotrigona acapulconis Strand, 1919 are particularly valued as food (honey), medicinal (honey and pollen), and material for handcrafts (wax). All species recorded are wild and their products are obtained through gathering. On average, local experts were able to collect 4 nests of stingless bees per year obtaining on average 6 L of honey and 4 Kg of wax but some came to collect up 10–12 hives per year (18 L of honey and 24 Kg of wax). Conclusions Local knowledge about use, management and ecological issues on stingless bees is persistent and deep in the study area. Information about this group of bees is progressively scarcer in Mexico and significant effort should be done from ethnobiological and ecological perspectives in order to complement the national inventory of bee resources and traditional knowledge and management of them. PMID:24903644

  3. A stingless bee can use visual odometry to estimate both height and distance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eckles, M A; Roubik, D W; Nieh, J C

    2012-09-15

    Bees move and forage within three dimensions and rely heavily on vision for navigation. The use of vision-based odometry has been studied extensively in horizontal distance measurement, but not vertical distance measurement. The honey bee Apis mellifera and the stingless bee Melipona seminigra measure distance visually using optic flow-movement of images as they pass across the retina. The honey bees gauge height using image motion in the ventral visual field. The stingless bees forage at different tropical forest canopy levels, ranging up to 40 m at our site. Thus, estimating height would be advantageous. We provide the first evidence that the stingless bee Melipona panamica utilizes optic flow information to gauge not only distance traveled but also height above ground, by processing information primarily from the lateral visual field. After training bees to forage at a set height in a vertical tunnel lined with black and white stripes, we observed foragers that explored a new tunnel with no feeder. In a new tunnel, bees searched at the same height they were trained to. In a narrower tunnel, bees experienced more image motion and significantly lowered their search height. In a wider tunnel, bees experienced less image motion and searched at significantly greater heights. In a tunnel without optic cues, bees were disoriented and searched at random heights. A horizontal tunnel testing these variables similarly affected foraging, but bees exhibited less precision (greater variance in search positions). Accurately gauging flight height above ground may be crucial for this species and others that compete for resources located at heights ranging from ground level to the high tropical forest canopies.

  4. Trap-nests for stingless bees (Hymenoptera, Meliponini)

    OpenAIRE

    Oliveira , Ricardo; Menezes , Cristiano; Soares , Ademilson; Fonseca , Vera

    2012-01-01

    International audience; Most stingless bee species build their nests inside tree hollows. In this paper, we present trap-nest containers which simulate nesting cavities so as to attract swarms of stingless bees. Although regularly used by stingless bee beekeepers in Brazil, this technique to obtain new colonies has not yet been systematically studied. We used two different types of trap-nests (plastic and cardboard) of four different sizes (0.5, 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0 L) containing propolis extrac...

  5. Hygienic behavior in the stingless bees Melipona beecheii and Scaptotrigona pectoralis (Hymenoptera: Meliponini).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medina, L M; Hart, A G; Ratnieks, F L W

    2009-05-19

    Hygienic behavior, a trait that may confer resistance to brood diseases in the honey bee Apis mellifera, was studied in two species of stingless bees in Mexico. Eight colonies each of Melipona beecheii and Scaptotrigona pectoralis were tested for hygienic behavior, the removal of dead or diseased brood, by freeze killing a comb of sealed cells containing pupae. Both species detected and removed dead brood. However, removal rates differed between species. In M. beecheii colonies, workers took 2-9 days to remove 100% of the dead brood (4.4 +/- 2.0 days, mean +/- SD), while S. pectoralis removed all dead brood in less than 3 days (2.3 +/- 0.6 days, mean +/- SD). We conclude that hygienic behavior is not unique to A. mellifera, and is not solely an adaptation for the reuse of brood cells as occurs in honey bees but not stingless bees. Although stingless bees do not reuse brood cells, space is limited. The removal of dead brood may be necessary to allow new cells to be constructed in the same place.

  6. Microbial communities of three sympatric Australian stingless bee species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara D Leonhardt

    Full Text Available Bacterial symbionts of insects have received increasing attention due to their prominent role in nutrient acquisition and defense. In social bees, symbiotic bacteria can maintain colony homeostasis and fitness, and the loss or alteration of the bacterial community may be associated with the ongoing bee decline observed worldwide. However, analyses of microbiota associated with bees have been largely confined to the social honeybees (Apis mellifera and bumblebees (Bombus spec., revealing--among other taxa--host-specific lactic acid bacteria (LAB, genus Lactobacillus that are not found in solitary bees. Here, we characterized the microbiota of three Australian stingless bee species (Apidae: Meliponini of two phylogenetically distant genera (Tetragonula and Austroplebeia. Besides common plant bacteria, we find LAB in all three species, showing that LAB are shared by honeybees, bumblebees and stingless bees across geographical regions. However, while LAB of the honeybee-associated Firm4-5 clusters were present in Tetragonula, they were lacking in Austroplebeia. Instead, we found a novel clade of likely host-specific LAB in all three Australian stingless bee species which forms a sister clade to a large cluster of Halictidae-associated lactobacilli. Our findings indicate both a phylogenetic and geographical signal of host-specific LAB in stingless bees and highlight stingless bees as an interesting group to investigate the evolutionary history of the bee-LAB association.

  7. Microbial Communities of Three Sympatric Australian Stingless Bee Species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonhardt, Sara D.; Kaltenpoth, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Bacterial symbionts of insects have received increasing attention due to their prominent role in nutrient acquisition and defense. In social bees, symbiotic bacteria can maintain colony homeostasis and fitness, and the loss or alteration of the bacterial community may be associated with the ongoing bee decline observed worldwide. However, analyses of microbiota associated with bees have been largely confined to the social honeybees (Apis mellifera) and bumblebees (Bombus spec.), revealing – among other taxa – host-specific lactic acid bacteria (LAB, genus Lactobacillus) that are not found in solitary bees. Here, we characterized the microbiota of three Australian stingless bee species (Apidae: Meliponini) of two phylogenetically distant genera (Tetragonula and Austroplebeia). Besides common plant bacteria, we find LAB in all three species, showing that LAB are shared by honeybees, bumblebees and stingless bees across geographical regions. However, while LAB of the honeybee-associated Firm4–5 clusters were present in Tetragonula, they were lacking in Austroplebeia. Instead, we found a novel clade of likely host-specific LAB in all three Australian stingless bee species which forms a sister clade to a large cluster of Halictidae-associated lactobacilli. Our findings indicate both a phylogenetic and geographical signal of host-specific LAB in stingless bees and highlight stingless bees as an interesting group to investigate the evolutionary history of the bee-LAB association. PMID:25148082

  8. Honey quality of Melipona sp. bees in Acre, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcus Augusto Damaceno do Vale

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Honey from stingless bees (Melipona sp. is a nutritious and medicinal product economically valued in the informal Brazilian market, driven by the growing demand for natural products; however, its physicochemical characteristics are still unknown. Thus, the aim of this study is to evaluate the physicochemical profile of the stingless bee honey produced in Cruzeiro do Sul, Acre. Honey samples were analyzed following the methodology recommended by Ministério da Agricultura, Pecuária e Abastecimento; the following parameters were established: moisture, total sugars, reducing sugars, apparent sucrose, ash, crude protein, diastase activity, Brix degrees, free acidity, lactonic acidity, total acidity, pH, hydroxymethylfurfural, electrical conductivity, color and Lugol, Lund and Fiehe reactions. Results show that these parameters are not suitable for all samples, being incompatible with established standards, indicating that the current legislation on Apis mellifera is not suitable for all characters analyzed, mainly moisture content, corroborating the need to standardize guidelines for honey from stingless bees. Moreover, there was no tampering in the honeys analyzed.

  9. Complete mitochondrial genome sequence of Melipona scutellaris, a Brazilian stingless bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Ulisses de Padua; Bonetti, Ana Maria; Goulart, Luiz Ricardo; Santos, Anderson Rodrigues Dos; Oliveira, Guilherme Correa de; Cuadros-Orellana, Sara; Ueira-Vieira, Carlos

    2016-09-01

    Melipona scutellaris is a Brazilian stingless bee species and a highly important native pollinator besides its use in rational rearing for honey production. In this study, we present the whole mitochondrial DNA sequence of M. scutellaris from a haploid male. The mitogenome has a size of 14,862 bp and harbors 13 protein-coding genes (PCGs), 2 rRNA genes and 21 tRNA genes.

  10. Preliminary observations on enemies of stingless bees and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Preliminary observations on enemies of stingless bees and honeybee (Apis Mellifera adansonii L.) Colonies from the Miticivanga- Tshibinda sector east of Kahuzi Biega National Park, South-Kivu Province, eastern DR Congo.

  11. Polychlorinated biphenyls in honey bees

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morse, R.A.; Culliney, T.W.; Gutenmann, W.H.; Littman, C.B.; Lisk, D.J.

    1987-02-01

    Honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) may traverse a radius of several miles from their hives and contact innumerable surfaces during their collection of nectar, pollen, propolis and water. In the process, they may become contaminated with surface constituents which are indicative of the type of environmental pollution in their particular foraging area. Honey has also been analyzed as a possible indicator of heavy metal pollution. Insecticides used in the vicinity of bee hives have been found in bees and honey. It has been recently reported that appreciable concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) have been found in honey bees sampled throughout Connecticut. In the work reported here, an analytical survey was conducted on PCBs in honey bees, honey, propolis and related samples in several states to learn the extent of contamination and possible sources.

  12. Atividade antimicrobiana de méis de cinco espécies de abelhas brasileiras sem ferrão Antimicrobial activity of honey from five species of Brazilian stingless bees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manuela Dória Mercês

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available A atividade antimicrobiana de méis produzidos por Melipona asilvai, Melipona quadrifasciata anthidioides, Friseomelita doederleinei, Tetragonisca angustula e Plebeia sp. foi investigada. O teste de difusão em poço demonstrou que todos os méis tem ação antibacteriana frente a Staphylococcus aureus, mas somente as amostras produzidas por M. quadrifasciata anthidioides e F. doederleinei inibiram o crescimento de Escherichia coli. No ensaio de determinação da concentração inibitória mínima, os méis de M. asilvai, M. quadrifasciata anthidioides, F. doederleinei e T. angustula foram mais ativos que os de Plebeia sp. frente a S. aureus e E. coli. Os micro-organismos Pseudomonas aeruginosa e Candida albicans foram resistentes a todos os méis em ambos ensaios. Os méis foram mais efetivos contra as bactérias do que frente a uma solução de açúcar, sugerindo que o mecanismo de inibição do crescimento bacteriano não está somente relacionado ao efeito osmótico. Os resultados obtidos podem explicar o uso medicinal desses méis em doenças bacterianas.The antimicrobial activity of honey produced by Melipona asilvai, Melipona quadrifasciata anthidioides, Friseomelita doederleinei, Tetragonisca angustula and Plebeia sp. were investigated. The agar well diffusion assay demonstrated that all honeys had antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus, but only the samples from M. quadrifasciata anthidioides and F. doederleinei inhibited the growth of Escherichia coli. In the Minimum Inhibitory Concentration determination assay, M. asilvai, M. quadrifasciata anthidioides, F. doederleinei and T. angustula honeys were more active than that from Plebeia sp. for S. aureus and E. coli. The microorganisms Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Candida albicans were resistant to the all native stingless bee honeys in both assays. Honeys were more effective against bacteria than a sugar solution, suggesting that the mechanism for bacterial growth inhibition

  13. Stingless bees (Melipona subnitida) adjust brood production rather than foraging activity in response to changes in pollen stores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maia-Silva, Camila; Hrncir, Michael; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera Lucia; Schorkopf, Dirk Louis P

    2016-10-01

    Highly eusocial bees (honey bees and stingless bees) sustain their colonies through periods of resource scarcity by food stored within the nest. The protein supply necessary for successful brood production is ensured through adjustments of the colonies' pollen foraging according to the availability of this resource in the environment. In honey bees Apis mellifera, in addition, pollen foraging is regulated through the broods' demand for this resource. Here, we investigated the influence of the colony's pollen store level on pollen foraging and brood production in stingless bees (Melipona subnitida). When pollen was added to the nests, colonies increased their brood production and reduced their pollen foraging within 24 h. On the other hand, when pollen reserves were removed, colonies significantly reduced their brood production. In strong contrast to A. mellifera; however, M. subnitida did not significantly increase its pollen foraging activity under poor pollen store conditions. This difference concerning the regulation of pollen foraging may be due to differences regarding the mechanism of brood provisioning. Honey bees progressively feed young larvae and, consequently, require a constant pollen supply. Stingless bees, by contrast, mass-provision their brood cells and temporary absence of pollen storage will not immediately result in substantial brood loss.

  14. Impact of habitat degradation on species diversity and nest abundance of five African stingless bee species in a tropical rainforest of Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kiatoko, Nkoba; Raina, Suresh Kumar; Langevelde, Van Frank

    2017-01-01

    Natural habitat degradation often involves the reduction or disappearance of bee species. In Africa, stingless bees are hunted for honey, which is used as food, for medicinal purposes, and for traditional rituals. Severe habitat degradation due to human settlement is hypothesized to have a negative

  15. Honey bee pathology: current threats to honey bees and beekeeping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Genersch, Elke

    2010-06-01

    Managed honey bees are the most important commercial pollinators of those crops which depend on animal pollination for reproduction and which account for 35% of the global food production. Hence, they are vital for an economic, sustainable agriculture and for food security. In addition, honey bees also pollinate a variety of wild flowers and, therefore, contribute to the biodiversity of many ecosystems. Honey and other hive products are, at least economically and ecologically rather, by-products of beekeeping. Due to this outstanding role of honey bees, severe and inexplicable honey bee colony losses, which have been reported recently to be steadily increasing, have attracted much attention and stimulated many research activities. Although the phenomenon "decline of honey bees" is far from being finally solved, consensus exists that pests and pathogens are the single most important cause of otherwise inexplicable colony losses. This review will focus on selected bee pathogens and parasites which have been demonstrated to be involved in colony losses in different regions of the world and which, therefore, are considered current threats to honey bees and beekeeping.

  16. Foraging behaviour of equatorial Afrotropical stingless bees: habitat selection and competition for resources

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kajobe, R.

    2008-01-01

    This thesis is a result of fieldwork on foraging ecology of Afrotropical stingless bees in Uganda. This is because most studies on stingless bee ecology are largely based in South America and South-east Asia and have ignored the aspects of Afrotropical stingless bees. The central question is how the

  17. Viral diseases in honey bee queens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Francis, Roy Mathew

    Honey bees are important insects for human welfare, due to pollination as well as honey production. Viral diseases strongly impact honey bee health, especially since the spread of varroa mites. This dissertation deals with the interactions between honey bees, viruses and varroa mites. A new tool...... was developed to diagnose three viruses in honey bees. Quantitative PCR was used to investigate the distribution of two popular viruses in five different tissues of 86 honey bee queens. Seasonal variation of viral infection in honey bee workers and varroa mites were determined by sampling 23 colonies under...

  18. Perfil sensorial e aceitabilidade de méis de abelhas sem ferrão submetidos a processos de conservação Sensorial profile and acceptability of stingless bee honey submitted to conservation processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geni da Silva Sodré

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available O presente trabalho avaliou o perfil sensorial e a aceitabilidade de méis de abelhas sem ferrão submetidos a dois processos de conservação, objetivando obter maior vida de prateleira. Foram utilizadas amostras de méis de Melipona scutellaris e M. quadrifasciata, coletadas no Estado da Bahia entre dezembro de 2005 e janeiro de 2006. As amostras foram submetidas aos processos de pasteurização e desumidificação, passando em seguida por avaliação sensorial. O perfil sensorial foi determinado no Laboratório de Entomologia do Centro de Ciências Agrárias, Ambientais e Biológicas da Universidade Federal do Recôncavo da Bahia, em Cruz das Almas, Estado da Bahia. Os atributos analisados foram: fluidez, cor, aroma, cristalização, sabor e aceitabilidade. Os resultados mostraram que os processos de conservação utilizados não interferem no perfil sensorial e na aceitabilidade do produto.The present work was conducted to evaluate the sensorial profile and the acceptability of the honey of stingless bees submitted to two conservation processes seeking to obtain longer shelf life. The samples of Melipona scutellaris and M. quadrifasciata honey were collected in the State of Bahia, Brazil, between December 2005 and January 2006. The samples were first submitted to pasteurization and dehumidification processes and then to sensorial evaluation. The sensorial profile was determined in the Laboratory of Entomology in the Center for Agrarian, Biological, and Environmental Sciences of the Federal University of Recôncavo Bahiano, in Cruz das Almas, in the state of Bahia. The analyzed attributes were: fluidity, color, scent, crystallization, flavour, and acceptability. The results show that the conservation processes used do not interfere with the sensorial profile and the product acceptability.

  19. Floral Sources for Stingless Bees (Tetragonula iridipennis in Nellithurai Village, Tamilnadu, India

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    K. Vijayakumar

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available We documented 45 plant taxa belonging to 29 families and non-floral sources utilized by Tetragonula iridipennis for pollen, nectar and resin. The foragers of T. iridipennis were also found to collect non-floral resources like fruit juice, fruits kept in the market for sales and from falling and damaged mango and jasmine fruits. The mutualistic association between T. iridipennis colonies and Hemipterans was observed and documented. According to pollen analysis, all are appeared to be multifloral honeys. The families Arecaceae and Fabaceae had a significant importance amongst the samples represented by four pollen types. Coconut, Sunflower and Banana pollen types occurred most constantly among the samples. The present palynological analysis of honey samples can provide the accurate depiction of the bee flora in Nellithurai village. The present study to help the beekeepers to know the stingless bee flora and to identify the botanical origins of honey.

  20. Espectro polínico de amostras de mel de Melipona mandacaia Smith, 1863 (Hymenoptera: Apidae = Pollen spectrum from honey samples of Melipona mandacaia Smith, 1863 stingless bee (Hymenoptera: Apidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rogério Marcos de Oliveira Alves

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available O espectro polínico de amostras de mel da abelha Melipona mandacaia foi analisado com objetivo de elucidar os recursos alimentares utilizados por essa espécie. A identificação das plantas visitadas foi realizada com base na análise dos tipos polínicos encontrados nas amostras de mel coletadas em 11 colônias localizadas no município de São Gabriel, em área de caatinga do Estado da Bahia, Brasil (11º14’S e 41º52’W. As análises quantitativas e qualitativas foram realizadas com o objetivo de determinar as porcentagens e classes de freqüência dos tipos polínicos presentes nas amostras de mel. Foram encontrados 26 tipos polínicos, sendo o tipo Piptadenia rigida (Mimosaceae considerado dominante. Ricinus communis (Euphorbiaceae, Mimosa verrucata (Mimosaceae e M. arenosa (Mimosaceae foram considerados pólen isolado importante. As famílias mais representativas no espectro polínico das amostras de mel foram Mimosaceae, Euphorbiaceae, Asteraceae e Anacardiaceae.The pollen spectrum from honey samples of Melipona mandacaia stingless bee was analyzed aiming at elucidating the alimentaryresources used by that species. The identification of the visited plants was based on the analysis of pollen from honey samples collected in 11 hives located in São Gabriel county, in the semiarid area of Bahia State, Brazil (11º14’S and 41º52’W. The quantitative and qualitative analyses of honey samples were conducted in order to determine the pollen types percentages and frequency classes. Twenty-six pollen types were found, being the Piptadenia rigida type (Mimosaceae considered dominant. Ricinus communis (Euphorbiaceae, Mimosa verrucata (Mimosaceae and M. arenosa (Mimosaceae were considered important isolated pollen. The most representative families found in the pollen spectrum of the honey samples were Mimosaceae, Euphorbiaceae, Asteraceae and Anacardiaceae.

  1. Antioxidant and antimicrobial activity of stingless bee bread and propolis extracts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akhir, Rabieatul Adawieah Md; Bakar, Mohd Fadzelly Abu; Sanusi, Shuaibu Babaji

    2017-10-01

    Bee bread and propolis are by-products of honey bee. The main objective of this research was to investigate the antioxidant and antimicrobial activity of stingless bee bread and propolis extracted using 70% ethanol and n-hexane. The antioxidant activity of the sample extracts were determined by spectrophotometry analysis while for the antimicrobial activity, the sample extracts were analyzed using disc diffusion and broth dilution assays. For DPPH and ABTS assays, the results showed that ethanolic extract of bee bread showed the highest free radical scavenging (%) as compared to other samples. However, FRAP values for both hexanic extracts are higher as compared to the ethanolic extracts. For disc diffusion assay, the results showed that the ethanolic extract of bee bread and propolis as well as hexanic extract of propolis were able to inhibit all tested bacteria. Meanwhile, broth dilution assay showed minimum inhibition zone (MIC) ranging from <6.67 to 33.33 µL/mL. As the conclusion, both bee bread and propolis produced by stingless bee in this study displayed antioxidant and antimicrobial effect but there are different in the degree of antioxidant and antimicrobial activity exhibited between each of the samples.

  2. Imidacloprid-induced impairment of mushroom bodies and behavior of the native stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata anthidioides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomé, Hudson Vaner V; Martins, Gustavo F; Lima, Maria Augusta P; Campos, Lúcio Antonio O; Guedes, Raul Narciso C

    2012-01-01

    Declines in pollinator colonies represent a worldwide concern. The widespread use of agricultural pesticides is recognized as a potential cause of these declines. Previous studies have examined the effects of neonicotinoid insecticides such as imidacloprid on pollinator colonies, but these investigations have mainly focused on adult honey bees. Native stingless bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Meliponinae) are key pollinators in neotropical areas and are threatened with extinction due to deforestation and pesticide use. Few studies have directly investigated the effects of pesticides on these pollinators. Furthermore, the existing impact studies did not address the issue of larval ingestion of contaminated pollen and nectar, which could potentially have dire consequences for the colony. Here, we assessed the effects of imidacloprid ingestion by stingless bee larvae on their survival, development, neuromorphology and adult walking behavior. Increasing doses of imidacloprid were added to the diet provided to individual worker larvae of the stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata anthidioides throughout their development. Survival rates above 50% were only observed at insecticide doses lower than 0.0056 µg active ingredient (a.i.)/bee. No sublethal effect on body mass or developmental time was observed in the surviving insects, but the pesticide treatment negatively affected the development of mushroom bodies in the brain and impaired the walking behavior of newly emerged adult workers. Therefore, stingless bee larvae are particularly susceptible to imidacloprid, as it caused both high mortality and sublethal effects that impaired brain development and compromised mobility at the young adult stage. These findings demonstrate the lethal effects of imidacloprid on native stingless bees and provide evidence of novel serious sublethal effects that may compromise colony survival. The ecological and economic importance of neotropical stingless bees as pollinators, their

  3. Imidacloprid-induced impairment of mushroom bodies and behavior of the native stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata anthidioides.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hudson Vaner V Tomé

    Full Text Available Declines in pollinator colonies represent a worldwide concern. The widespread use of agricultural pesticides is recognized as a potential cause of these declines. Previous studies have examined the effects of neonicotinoid insecticides such as imidacloprid on pollinator colonies, but these investigations have mainly focused on adult honey bees. Native stingless bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Meliponinae are key pollinators in neotropical areas and are threatened with extinction due to deforestation and pesticide use. Few studies have directly investigated the effects of pesticides on these pollinators. Furthermore, the existing impact studies did not address the issue of larval ingestion of contaminated pollen and nectar, which could potentially have dire consequences for the colony. Here, we assessed the effects of imidacloprid ingestion by stingless bee larvae on their survival, development, neuromorphology and adult walking behavior. Increasing doses of imidacloprid were added to the diet provided to individual worker larvae of the stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata anthidioides throughout their development. Survival rates above 50% were only observed at insecticide doses lower than 0.0056 µg active ingredient (a.i./bee. No sublethal effect on body mass or developmental time was observed in the surviving insects, but the pesticide treatment negatively affected the development of mushroom bodies in the brain and impaired the walking behavior of newly emerged adult workers. Therefore, stingless bee larvae are particularly susceptible to imidacloprid, as it caused both high mortality and sublethal effects that impaired brain development and compromised mobility at the young adult stage. These findings demonstrate the lethal effects of imidacloprid on native stingless bees and provide evidence of novel serious sublethal effects that may compromise colony survival. The ecological and economic importance of neotropical stingless bees as pollinators

  4. Imidacloprid-Induced Impairment of Mushroom Bodies and Behavior of the Native Stingless Bee Melipona quadrifasciata anthidioides

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomé, Hudson Vaner V.; Martins, Gustavo F.; Lima, Maria Augusta P.; Campos, Lúcio Antonio O.; Guedes, Raul Narciso C.

    2012-01-01

    Declines in pollinator colonies represent a worldwide concern. The widespread use of agricultural pesticides is recognized as a potential cause of these declines. Previous studies have examined the effects of neonicotinoid insecticides such as imidacloprid on pollinator colonies, but these investigations have mainly focused on adult honey bees. Native stingless bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Meliponinae) are key pollinators in neotropical areas and are threatened with extinction due to deforestation and pesticide use. Few studies have directly investigated the effects of pesticides on these pollinators. Furthermore, the existing impact studies did not address the issue of larval ingestion of contaminated pollen and nectar, which could potentially have dire consequences for the colony. Here, we assessed the effects of imidacloprid ingestion by stingless bee larvae on their survival, development, neuromorphology and adult walking behavior. Increasing doses of imidacloprid were added to the diet provided to individual worker larvae of the stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata anthidioides throughout their development. Survival rates above 50% were only observed at insecticide doses lower than 0.0056 µg active ingredient (a.i.)/bee. No sublethal effect on body mass or developmental time was observed in the surviving insects, but the pesticide treatment negatively affected the development of mushroom bodies in the brain and impaired the walking behavior of newly emerged adult workers. Therefore, stingless bee larvae are particularly susceptible to imidacloprid, as it caused both high mortality and sublethal effects that impaired brain development and compromised mobility at the young adult stage. These findings demonstrate the lethal effects of imidacloprid on native stingless bees and provide evidence of novel serious sublethal effects that may compromise colony survival. The ecological and economic importance of neotropical stingless bees as pollinators, their

  5. Nectar minerals as regulators of flower visitation in stingless bees and nectar hoarding wasps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afik, Ohad; Delaplane, Keith S; Shafir, Sharoni; Moo-Valle, Humberto; Quezada-Euán, J Javier G

    2014-05-01

    Various nectar components have a repellent effect on flower visitors, and their adaptive advantages for the plant are not well understood. Persea americana (avocado) is an example of a plant that secretes nectar with repellent components. It was demonstrated that the mineral constituents of this nectar, mainly potassium and phosphate, are concentrated enough to repel honey bees, Apis mellifera, a pollinator often used for commercial avocado pollination. Honey bees, however, are not the natural pollinator of P. americana, a plant native to Central America. In order to understand the role of nectar minerals in plant-pollinator relationships, it is important to focus on the plant's interactions with its natural pollinators. Two species of stingless bees and one species of social wasp, all native to the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, part of the natural range of P. americana, were tested for their sensitivity to sugar solutions enriched with potassium and phosphate, and compared with the sensitivity of honey bees. In choice tests between control and mineral-enriched solutions, all three native species were indifferent for mineral concentrations lower than those naturally occurring in P. americana nectar. Repellence was expressed at concentrations near or exceeding natural concentrations. The threshold point at which native pollinators showed repellence to increasing levels of minerals was higher than that detected for honey bees. The results do not support the hypothesis that high mineral content is attractive for native Hymenopteran pollinators; nevertheless, nectar mineral composition may still have a role in regulating flower visitors through different levels of repellency.

  6. Handling sticky Resin by Stingless Bees: Adhesive Properties of Surface Structures

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    MARKUS GASTAUER

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Many Stingless Bees (Hymenoptera: Meliponini like Tetragonisca angustula collect resin to defend their nests against intruders like ants or Robber Bees. Small portions of resin are attached to intruders bodies and extremities causing their immobilization. It has been observed that resin is removed easily from the bee's mandible but adheres strongly to the intruder's cuticle. We tested the hypothesis that resin sticks lesser to the mandibles of Stingless Bees than to the surface of intruders due to special surface structures or adhesive properties of these structures. The surface structures of the mandible of T. angustula and the trochanter of Camponotus sericeiventris were studied by scanning electron microscopy. To measure adhesion properties, selected surfaces were fixed on a fine glass pin and withdrawn from a glass tip covered with resin. The deformation of the glass pin indicates adhesion forces operating between the resin and the selective surface. The absolute value of the forces is computed from the glass pin's stiffness. It has been shown that resin sticks more to the smooth mandible of the bee than to the structured trochanter of the ant. A new hypothesis to be tested says that the bees might lubricate their mandibles with nectar or honey to reduce the resin's adhesion temporarily.

  7. The traditional knowledge on stingless bees (Apidae: Meliponina) used by the Enawene-Nawe tribe in western Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    dos Santos, Gilton Mendes; Antonini, Yasmine

    2008-09-15

    This paper presents the Enawene-Nawe Society's traditional knowledge about stingless bees. The Enawene-Nawe are an Aruak speaking people, indigenous to the Meridian Amazon. Specifically, they live in the Jurema River hydrological basin, located in the northwestern region of the Mato Grosso state. The stingless bees were sampled from two ecologically similar regions in the interior of Enawene-Nawe Land. The first sampling took place around the village, i.e., adjacent to houses, by the edge of the Iquê River, next to food leftovers, around human excrement, and simply when the insects were found flying or reposing on a human body. The second round of sampling happened from 29/10 to 02/11/94, during an expedition for honey collection that took place throughout the ciliar bushes of the Papagaio River, an important tributary of Juruena River. We sampled bees adjacent to their nests following the beehive inspection or during the honey extraction. In this work, the main bee species of the sub tribe Meliponina, which were handled by the Enawene-Nawe, was identified, and a brief ethnographic description of the honey collection expeditions and its social-cosmologic meaning for the group was done. Similar to other indigenous people in Brazil, the Enawene-Nawe recognized 48 stingless bee species. They identified each bee species by name and specified each one's ecological niche. A brief ethnographic description of the honey collection expeditions and bees' social-cosmologic meaning for the group is included. We concluded that, as an example of other indigenous people, the Enawene-Nawe classify and identify the bees based not only on their structure and morphological aspects but also on the ecological, etiological, and social characteristics of the species.

  8. The traditional knowledge on stingless bees (Apidae: Meliponina used by the Enawene-Nawe tribe in western Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonini Yasmine

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background This paper presents the Enawene-Nawe Society's traditional knowledge about stingless bees. The Enawene-Nawe are an Aruak speaking people, indigenous to the Meridian Amazon. Specifically, they live in the Jurema River hydrological basin, located in the northwestern region of the Mato Grosso state. Methods The stingless bees were sampled from two ecologically similar regions in the interior of Enawene-Nawe Land. The first sampling took place around the village, i.e., adjacent to houses, by the edge of the Iquê River, next to food leftovers, around human excrement, and simply when the insects were found flying or reposing on a human body. The second round of sampling happened from 29/10 to 02/11/94, during an expedition for honey collection that took place throughout the ciliar bushes of the Papagaio River, an important tributary of Juruena River. We sampled bees adjacent to their nests following the beehive inspection or during the honey extraction. In this work, the main bee species of the sub tribe Meliponina, which were handled by the Enawene-Nawe, was identified, and a brief ethnographic description of the honey collection expeditions and its social-cosmologic meaning for the group was done. Results and Discussion Similar to other indigenous people in Brazil, the Enawene-Nawe recognized 48 stingless bee species. They identified each bee species by name and specified each one's ecological niche. A brief ethnographic description of the honey collection expeditions and bees' social-cosmologic meaning for the group is included. Conclusion We concluded that, as an example of other indigenous people, the Enawene-Nawe classify and identify the bees based not only on their structure and morphological aspects but also on the ecological, etiological, and social characteristics of the species.

  9. Special Issue: Honey Bee Viruses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sebastian Gisder

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Pollination of flowering plants is an important ecosystem service provided by wild insect pollinators and managed honey bees. Hence, losses and declines of pollinating insect species threaten human food security and are of major concern not only for apiculture or agriculture but for human society in general. Honey bee colony losses and bumblebee declines have attracted intensive research interest over the last decade and although the problem is far from being solved we now know that viruses are among the key players of many of these bee losses and bumblebee declines. With this special issue on bee viruses we, therefore, aimed to collect high quality original papers reflecting the current state of bee virus research. To this end, we focused on newly discovered viruses (Lake Sinai viruses, bee macula-like virus, or a so far neglected virus species (Apis mellifera filamentous virus, and cutting edge technologies (mass spectrometry, RNAi approach applied in the field.

  10. Special Issue: Honey Bee Viruses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gisder, Sebastian; Genersch, Elke

    2015-01-01

    Pollination of flowering plants is an important ecosystem service provided by wild insect pollinators and managed honey bees. Hence, losses and declines of pollinating insect species threaten human food security and are of major concern not only for apiculture or agriculture but for human society in general. Honey bee colony losses and bumblebee declines have attracted intensive research interest over the last decade and although the problem is far from being solved we now know that viruses are among the key players of many of these bee losses and bumblebee declines. With this special issue on bee viruses we, therefore, aimed to collect high quality original papers reflecting the current state of bee virus research. To this end, we focused on newly discovered viruses (Lake Sinai viruses, bee macula-like virus), or a so far neglected virus species (Apis mellifera filamentous virus), and cutting edge technologies (mass spectrometry, RNAi approach) applied in the field. PMID:26702462

  11. Effect of Three Entomopathogenic Fungi on Three Species of Stingless Bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae) Under Laboratory Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toledo-Hernández, R A; Ruíz-Toledo, J; Toledo, J; Sánchez, D

    2016-05-04

    Development of alternative strategies for pest control with reduced effect on beneficial organisms is a priority given the increasing global loss of biodiversity. Biological control with entomopathogenic fungi arises as a viable option to control insect pests. However, few studies have focused on the consequences of using these organisms on pollinators other than the honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) or bumble bees (Bombus spp). We evaluated the pathogenicity of commercial formulations of three widely used entomopathogenic fungi, Metarhizium anisopliae (Metschnikoff) Sorokin, Beauveria bassiana Vuillemin, and Isaria fumosorosea (Wize), to three species of stingless bees: Tetragonisca angustula Latreille, Scaptotrigona mexicana Guérin-Meneville, and Melipona beecheii Bennett. Bioassays consisted of exposing groups of bees to the recommended field concentration of each fungus using a microspray tower under laboratory conditions. Susceptibility to fungi varied greatly among species. Isaria fumosorosea (strain Ifu-lu 01) and the two formulations of B. bassiana (Bea-TNK and BotanicGard) caused entomopathogenic fungi on stingless bees, further field studies are required to support this finding. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  12. Antimicrobial and antiproliferative activities of stingless bee Melipona scutellaris geopropolis

    OpenAIRE

    da Cunha, Marcos Guilherme; Franchin, Marcelo; Galv?o, L?viaC?maradeCarvalho; de Ruiz, AnaL?ciaTascaG?is; de Carvalho, Jo?o Ernesto; Ikegaki, Masarahu; de Alencar, Severino Matias; Koo, Hyun; Rosalen, Pedro Luiz

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Background Geopropolis is a type of propolis containing resin, wax, and soil, collected by threatened stingless bee species native to tropical countries and used in folk medicine. However, studies concerning the biological activity and chemical composition of geopropolis are scarce. In this study, we evaluated the antimicrobial and antiproliferative activity of the ethanolic extract of geopropolis (EEGP) collected by Melipona sc...

  13. New species of the stingless bee genus Schwarziana (Hymenoptera, Apidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriel A.R. Melo

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Two new species of the stingless bee genus Schwarziana from Brazil are described and illustrated. Schwarziana bocainensis sp. nov. is described from Serra da Bocaina, in São Paulo, and S. chapadensis sp. nov. is described from Chapada dos Veadeiros, in Goiás. An identification key to workers of the known species of Schwarziana is provided.

  14. A case of multiple mating in stingless bees (Meliponinae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Imperatriz-Fonseca, V.L.; Matos, E.T.; Ferreira, F.; Velthuis, H.H.W.

    1998-01-01

    In several stingless bee species many males aggregate in the vicinity of a nest when a virgin queen is present in the colony and is preparing for the nuptial flight. We report such male assemblage for Tetragonisca angustula. The departure of a virgin queen from the colony and the

  15. Características físico-químicas de amostras de mel de Melipona mandacaia Smith (Hymenoptera: Apidae Physico-chemical characteristics of honey samples of stingless bee Melipona mandacaia Smith (Hymenoptera: Apidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rogério Marcos de Oliveira Alves

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Análises de amostras de mel da abelha Melipona mandacaia provenientes do município de São Gabriel, região semi-árida do Estado da Bahia, foram realizadas com o objetivo de contribuir para o conhecimento das características físico-químicas desse produto. Os parâmetros analisados foram: Umidade (%; Hidroximetilfurfural (mg.kg-1; Açúcares Redutores (%; Sacarose (%; Viscosidade (mPa. s; Condutividade Elétrica (µS; pH; Acidez (meq.kg-1; Índice de Formol (mL.kg-1; e Cor. A maioria dos parâmetros físico-químicos apresentou valores médios adequados para o consumo humano, o que possibilita a exploração desse produto pelas comunidades rurais da região semi-árida da Bahia. Contudo, o teor de umidade elevado é um aspecto que requer uma maior atenção por parte do produtor, que deverá ter maiores cuidados com a higiene na manipulação do mel durante a coleta e no processo de armazenamento, evitando a sua contaminação por microrganismos que causam a depreciação do produto.Honey samples of the Melipona mandacaia stingless bee collected in the São Gabriel county, semi-arid region of the State of Bahia, Brazil, were analyzed with the objective of contributing for the knowledge of the characteristics physico-chemical of that product. The parameters analyzed were: Moisture (%; Hydroxymethylfurfural (mg.kg-1; Reducing Sugars (%; Sucrose (%; Viscosity (mPa.s; Electrical Conductivity (µS; pH; Acidity (meq.kg-1; Formol Index (mL.kg-1; and Color. Most of the physico-chemical parameters showed values adequated for the human consumption, facilitating the exploration of the product by rural communities of the semi-arid area of Bahia. However, the high moisture content is an aspect that deserves a greater attention by the part of producers, who should have concern with hygiene cares when manipulating the honey during the collection and the storage processes, avoiding its contamination with microorganisms that may cause depreciation of the

  16. Widespread occurrence of honey bee pathogens in solitary bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravoet, Jorgen; De Smet, Lina; Meeus, Ivan; Smagghe, Guy; Wenseleers, Tom; de Graaf, Dirk C

    2014-10-01

    Solitary bees and honey bees from a neighbouring apiary were screened for a broad set of putative pathogens including protists, fungi, spiroplasmas and viruses. Most sampled bees appeared to be infected with multiple parasites. Interestingly, viruses exclusively known from honey bees such as Apis mellifera Filamentous Virus and Varroa destructor Macula-like Virus were also discovered in solitary bees. A microsporidium found in Andrena vaga showed most resemblance to Nosema thomsoni. Our results suggest that bee hives represent a putative source of pathogens for other pollinators. Similarly, solitary bees may act as a reservoir of honey bee pathogens. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Swimming of the Honey Bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roh, Chris; Gharib, Morteza

    2016-11-01

    When the weather gets hot, nursing honey bees nudge foragers to collect water for thermoregulation of their hive. While on their mission to collect water, foragers sometimes get trapped on the water surface, forced to interact with a different fluid environment. In this study, we present the survival strategy of the honey bees at the air-water interface. A high-speed videography and shadowgraph were used to record the honey bees swimming. A unique thrust mechanism through rapid vibration of their wings at 60 to 150 Hz was observed. This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. CBET-1511414; additional support by the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship under Grant No. DGE-1144469.

  18. The alternative Pharaoh approach: stingless bees mummify beetle parasites alive

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greco, Mark K.; Hoffmann, Dorothee; Dollin, Anne; Duncan, Michael; Spooner-Hart, Robert; Neumann, Peter

    2010-03-01

    Workers from social insect colonies use different defence strategies to combat invaders. Nevertheless, some parasitic species are able to bypass colony defences. In particular, some beetle nest invaders cannot be killed or removed by workers of social bees, thus creating the need for alternative social defence strategies to ensure colony survival. Here we show, using diagnostic radioentomology, that stingless bee workers ( Trigona carbonaria) immediately mummify invading adult small hive beetles ( Aethina tumida) alive by coating them with a mixture of resin, wax and mud, thereby preventing severe damage to the colony. In sharp contrast to the responses of honeybee and bumblebee colonies, the rapid live mummification strategy of T. carbonaria effectively prevents beetle advancements and removes their ability to reproduce. The convergent evolution of mummification in stingless bees and encapsulation in honeybees is another striking example of co-evolution between insect societies and their parasites.

  19. How honey bees carry pollen

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matherne, Marguerite E.; Anyanwu, Gabriel; Leavey, Jennifer K.; Hu, David L.

    2017-11-01

    Honey bees are the tanker of the skies, carrying thirty percent of their weight in pollen per foraging trip using specialized orifices on their body. How do they manage to hang onto those pesky pollen grains? In this experimental study, we investigate the adhesion force of pollen to the honeybee. To affix pollen to themselves, honey bees form a suspension of pollen in nectar, creating a putty-like pollen basket that is skewered by leg hairs. We use tensile tests to show that the viscous force of the pollen basket is more than ten times the honeybee's flight force. This work may provide inspiration for the design of robotic flying pollinators.

  20. Monogamy in large bee societies: a stingless paradox.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaffé, Rodolfo; Pioker-Hara, Fabiana C; Dos Santos, Charles F; Santiago, Leandro R; Alves, Denise A; de M P Kleinert, Astrid; Francoy, Tiago M; Arias, Maria C; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera L

    2014-03-01

    High genetic diversity is important for the functioning of large insect societies. Across the social Hymenoptera (ants, bees, and wasps), species with the largest colonies tend to have a high colony-level genetic diversity resulting from multiple queens (polygyny) or queens that mate with multiple males (polyandry). Here we studied the genetic structure of Trigona spinipes, a stingless bee species with colonies an order of magnitude larger than those of polyandrous honeybees. Genotypes of adult workers and pupae from 43 nests distributed across three Brazilian biomes showed that T. spinipes colonies are usually headed by one singly mated queen. Apart from revealing a notable exception from the general incidence of high genetic diversity in large insect societies, our results reinforce previous findings suggesting the absence of polyandry in stingless bees and provide evidence against the sperm limitation hypothesis for the evolution of polyandry. Stingless bee species with large colonies, such as T. spinipes, thus seem promising study models to unravel alternative mechanisms to increase genetic diversity within colonies or understand the adaptive value of low genetic diversity in large insect societies.

  1. Stingless bees further improve apple pollination and production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blandina Felipe Viana

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The use of Africanised honeybee (Apis mellifera scutellata Lepeletier hives to increase pollination success in apple orchards is a widespread practice. However, this study is the first to investigate the number of honeybee hives ha-1 required to increase the production of fruits and seeds as well as the potential contribution of the stingless bee Mandaçaia (Melipona quadrifasciata anthidioides Lepeletier. We performed tests in a 43-ha apple orchard located in the municipality of Ibicoara (13º24’50.7’’S and 41º17’7.4’’W in Chapada Diamantina, State of Bahia, Brazil. In 2011, fruits from the Eva variety set six seeds on average, and neither a greater number of hives (from 7 to 11 hives ha-1 nor a greater number of pollen collectors at the honeybee hives displayed general effects on the seed number. Without wild pollinators, seven Africanised honeybee hives ha-1 with pollen collectors is currently the best option for apple producers because no further increase in the seed number was observed with higher hive densities. In 2012, supplementation with both stingless bees (12 hives ha-1 and Africanised honeybees (7 hives ha-1 provided higher seed and fruit production than supplementation with honeybees (7 hives ha-1 alone. Therefore, the stingless bee can improve the performance of honeybee as a pollinator of apple flowers, since the presence of both of these bees results in increases in apple fruit and seed number.

  2. Bees and Honey

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    TOM; HANCOCK

    2011-01-01

    The first bee landed on Dalin Wang at around one in the afternoon.Surrounded by3,000 onlookers,he wore a pair of trousers,black boots and two small cloth bags,each containing a queen bee.Wang watched the bees cover his chest,legs and arms,until every

  3. Microsatellite loci for the stingless bee Melipona rufiventris (Hymenoptera: Apidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopes, Denilce Meneses; D Silva, Filipe Oliveira; Fernandes Salomão, Tânia Maria; Campos, Lúcio Antônio D Oliveira; Tavares, Mara Garcia

    2009-05-01

    Eight microsatellite primers were developed from ISSR (intersimple sequence repeats) markers for the stingless bee Melipona rufiventris. These primers were tested in 20 M. rufiventris workers, representing a single population from Minas Gerais state. The number of alleles per locus ranged from 2 to 5 (mean = 2.63) and the observed and expected heterozygosity values ranged from 0.00 to 0.44 (mean = 0.20) and from 0.05 to 0.68 (mean = 0.31), respectively. Several loci were also polymorphic in M. quadrifasciata, M. bicolor, M. mandacaia and Partamona helleri and should prove useful in population studies of other stingless bees. © 2009 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  4. Pollen analysis of geopropolis and propolis from stingless bees

    OpenAIRE

    Freitas, Alex Da Silva; Vit Olivier, Patricia; Barth Ortrud, Monika

    2013-01-01

    The present study aims to review palynological analysis of geopropolis and propolis obtained from stingless bees in South America. Such studies are scarce and most analyzed samples are from Brazil, with a few from Bolivia and Venezuela. High diversity in pollen types, along with plant tissue fragments, hyphae, fungal spores, and amorphous organic matter were found. Sand or clay were always present. Pollen analysis of geopropolis helps to characterize vegetation surrounding the collection site...

  5. Morphology and structure of the tarsal glands of the stingless bee Melipona seminigra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jarau, Stefan; Hrncir, Michael; Zucchi, Ronaldo; Barth, Friedrich G.

    2005-03-01

    Footprint secretions deposited at the nest entrance or on food sources are used for chemical communication by honey bees, bumble bees, and stingless bees. The question of the glandular origin of the substances involved, however, has not been unequivocally answered yet. We investigated the morphology and structure of tarsal glands within the fifth tarsomeres of the legs of workers of Melipona seminigra in order to clarify their possible role in the secretion of footprints. The tarsal gland is a sac-like fold forming a reservoir. Its glandular tissue is composed of a unicellular layer of specialized epidermal cells, which cover the thin cuticular intima forming the reservoir. We found that the tarsal glands lack any openings to the outside and therefore conclude that they are not involved in the secretion of footprint substances. The secretion produced accumulates within the gland's reservoir and reaches as far as into the arolium. Thus it is likely that it serves to fill and unfold the arolium during walking to increase adhesion on smooth surfaces, as is known for honey bees and weaver ants.

  6. A scientific note on the use of stingless bees for commercial pollination in enclosures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Slaa, E.J.; Sanchez, Luis Alejandro; Sandi, Miriam; Salazar, William

    1999-01-01

    Stingless bees are considered to be very important pollinators in the tropics, and they are known to effectively pollinate at least 9 crops [1]. Nevertheless, they are seldomly used for commercial pollination. To our knowledge, only one study has been published using stingless bees for crop

  7. Proceedings "… Towards Resilient Honey Bees …"

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dooremalen, van C.A.; Zweep, A.

    2015-01-01

    The Research Roadmap is a co-creation by Bees@wur and the Dutch government, and the (inter)national researchers participating in the workshop Resilient Honey bees 23-24 November 2015, Castle Hoekelum, Bennekom, The Netherlands

  8. Stingless Bee Larvae Require Fungal Steroid to Pupate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paludo, Camila R; Menezes, Cristiano; Silva-Junior, Eduardo A; Vollet-Neto, Ayrton; Andrade-Dominguez, Andres; Pishchany, Gleb; Khadempour, Lily; do Nascimento, Fabio S; Currie, Cameron R; Kolter, Roberto; Clardy, Jon; Pupo, Mônica T

    2018-01-18

    The larval stage of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona depilis must consume a specific brood cell fungus in order to continue development. Here we show that this fungus is a member of the genus Zygosaccharomyces and provides essential steroid precursors to the developing bee. Insect pupation requires ecdysteroid hormones, and as insects cannot synthesize sterols de novo, they must obtain steroids in their diet. Larval in vitro culturing assays demonstrated that consuming ergosterol recapitulates the developmental effects on S. depilis as ingestion of Zygosaccharomyces sp. cells. Thus, we determined the molecular underpinning of this intimate mutualistic symbiosis. Phylogenetic analyses showed that similar cases of bee-Zygosaccharomyces symbiosis may exist. This unprecedented case of bee-fungus symbiosis driven by steroid requirement brings new perspectives regarding pollinator-microbiota interaction and preservation.

  9. Methyl farnesoate epoxidase (mfe) gene expression and juvenile hormone titers in the life cycle of a highly eusocial stingless bee, Melipona scutellaris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso-Júnior, Carlos Antônio Mendes; Silva, Renato Pereira; Borges, Naiara Araújo; de Carvalho, Washington João; Walter, S Leal; Simões, Zilá Luz Paulino; Bitondi, Marcia Maria Gentile; Ueira Vieira, Carlos; Bonetti, Ana Maria; Hartfelder, Klaus

    2017-08-01

    In social insects, juvenile hormone (JH) has acquired novel functions related to caste determination and division of labor among workers, and this is best evidenced in the honey bee. In contrast to honey bees, stingless bees are a much more diverse group of highly eusocial bees, and the genus Melipona has long called special attention due to a proposed genetic mechanism of caste determination. Here, we examined methyl farnesoate epoxidase (mfe) gene expression, encoding an enzyme relevant for the final step in JH biosynthesis, and measured the hemolymph JH titers for all life cycle stages of Melipona scutellaris queens and workers. We confirmed that mfe is exclusively expressed in the corpora allata. The JH titer is high in the second larval instar, drops in the third, and rises again as the larvae enter metamorphosis. During the pupal stage, mfe expression is initialy elevated, but then gradually drops to low levels before adult emergence. No variation was, however, seen in the JH titer. In adult virgin queens, mfe expression and the JH titer are significantly elevated, possibly associated with their reproductive potential. For workers we found that JH titers are lower in foragers than in nurse bees, while mfe expression did not differ. Stingless bees are, thus, distinct from honey bee workers, suggesting that they have maintained the ancestral gonadotropic function for JH. Hence, the physiological circuitries underlying a highly eusocial life style may be variable, even within a monophyletic clade such as the corbiculate bees. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Handling sticky resin by stingless bees (Hymenoptera, Apidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Markus Gastauer

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available For their nest defense, stingless bees (Meliponini collect plant resins which they stick on intruders like ants or cleptobiotic robber bees causing their immobilization. The aim of this article is to identify all parts of stingless bee workers contacting these sticky resins. Of special interest are those body parts with anti-adhesive properties to resin, where it can be removed without residues. For that, extensive behavioral observations during foraging flight, handling and application of the resin have been carried out. When handling the resin, all tarsi touch the resin while walking above it. For transportation from plants to the nest during foraging flight, the resin is packed to the corbicula via tarsi and basitarsi of front and middle legs. Once stuck to the resin or after the corbicula had been unloaded, the bee's legs have to be cleaned thoroughly. Only the tips of the mandibles, that form, cut and apply the sticky resin, seem to have at least temporarily resin-rejecting properties.

  11. Wild bees enhance honey bees' pollination of hybrid sunflower.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenleaf, Sarah S; Kremen, Claire

    2006-09-12

    Pollinators are required for producing 15-30% of the human food supply, and farmers rely on managed honey bees throughout the world to provide these services. Yet honey bees are not always the most efficient pollinators of all crops and are declining in various parts of the world. Crop pollination shortages are becoming increasingly common. We found that behavioral interactions between wild and honey bees increase the pollination efficiency of honey bees on hybrid sunflower up to 5-fold, effectively doubling honey bee pollination services on the average field. These indirect contributions caused by interspecific interactions between wild and honey bees were more than five times more important than the contributions wild bees make to sunflower pollination directly. Both proximity to natural habitat and crop planting practices were significantly correlated with pollination services provided directly and indirectly by wild bees. Our results suggest that conserving wild habitat at the landscape scale and altering selected farm management techniques could increase hybrid sunflower production. These findings also demonstrate the economic importance of interspecific interactions for ecosystem services and suggest that protecting wild bee populations can help buffer the human food supply from honey bee shortages.

  12. Physiology and biochemistry of honey bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Despite their tremendous economic importance, honey bees are not a typical model system for studying general questions of insect physiology. This is primarily due to the fact that honey bees live in complex social settings which impact their physiological and biochemical characteristics. Not surpris...

  13. Cell culture techniques in honey bee research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cell culture techniques are indispensable in most if not all life science disciplines to date. Wherever cell culture models are lacking scientific development is hampered. Unfortunately this has been and still is the case in honey bee research because permanent honey bee cell lines have not yet been...

  14. Metatranscriptomic analyses of honey bee colonies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tozkar, Cansu Ö; Kence, Meral; Kence, Aykut; Huang, Qiang; Evans, Jay D

    2015-01-01

    Honey bees face numerous biotic threats from viruses to bacteria, fungi, protists, and mites. Here we describe a thorough analysis of microbes harbored by worker honey bees collected from field colonies in geographically distinct regions of Turkey. Turkey is one of the World's most important centers of apiculture, harboring five subspecies of Apis mellifera L., approximately 20% of the honey bee subspecies in the world. We use deep ILLUMINA-based RNA sequencing to capture RNA species for the honey bee and a sampling of all non-endogenous species carried by bees. After trimming and mapping these reads to the honey bee genome, approximately 10% of the sequences (9-10 million reads per library) remained. These were then mapped to a curated set of public sequences containing ca. Sixty megabase-pairs of sequence representing known microbial species associated with honey bees. Levels of key honey bee pathogens were confirmed using quantitative PCR screens. We contrast microbial matches across different sites in Turkey, showing new country recordings of Lake Sinai virus, two Spiroplasma bacterium species, symbionts Candidatus Schmidhempelia bombi, Frischella perrara, Snodgrassella alvi, Gilliamella apicola, Lactobacillus spp.), neogregarines, and a trypanosome species. By using metagenomic analysis, this study also reveals deep molecular evidence for the presence of bacterial pathogens (Melissococcus plutonius, Paenibacillus larvae), Varroa destructor-1 virus, Sacbrood virus, and fungi. Despite this effort we did not detect KBV, SBPV, Tobacco ringspot virus, VdMLV (Varroa Macula like virus), Acarapis spp., Tropilaeleps spp. and Apocephalus (phorid fly). We discuss possible impacts of management practices and honey bee subspecies on microbial retinues. The described workflow and curated microbial database will be generally useful for microbial surveys of healthy and declining honey bees.

  15. Repeated evolution of soldier sub-castes suggests parasitism drives social complexity in stingless bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grüter, Christoph; Segers, Francisca H I D; Menezes, Cristiano; Vollet-Neto, Ayrton; Falcón, Tiago; von Zuben, Lucas; Bitondi, Márcia M G; Nascimento, Fabio S; Almeida, Eduardo A B

    2017-02-23

    The differentiation of workers into morphological castes represents an important evolutionary innovation that is thought to improve division of labor in insect societies. Given the potential benefits of task-related worker differentiation, it is puzzling that physical worker castes, such as soldiers, are extremely rare in social bees and absent in wasps. Following the recent discovery of soldiers in a stingless bee, we studied the occurrence of worker differentiation in 28 stingless bee species from Brazil and found that several species have specialized soldiers for colony defence. Our results reveal that worker differentiation evolved repeatedly during the last ~ 25 million years and coincided with the emergence of parasitic robber bees, a major threat to many stingless bee species. Furthermore, our data suggest that these robbers are a driving force behind the evolution of worker differentiation as targets of robber bees are four times more likely to have nest guards of increased size than non-targets. These findings reveal unexpected diversity in the social organization of stingless bees.Although common in ants and termites, worker differentiation into physical castes is rare in social bees and unknown in wasps. Here, Grüter and colleagues find a guard caste in ten species of stingless bees and show that the evolution of the guard caste is associated with parasitization by robber bees.

  16. Antiviral Defense Mechanisms in Honey Bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brutscher, Laura M.; Daughenbaugh, Katie F.; Flenniken, Michelle L.

    2015-01-01

    Honey bees are significant pollinators of agricultural crops and other important plant species. High annual losses of honey bee colonies in North America and in some parts of Europe have profound ecological and economic implications. Colony losses have been attributed to multiple factors including RNA viruses, thus understanding bee antiviral defense mechanisms may result in the development of strategies that mitigate colony losses. Honey bee antiviral defense mechanisms include RNA-interference, pathogen-associated molecular pattern (PAMP) triggered signal transduction cascades, and reactive oxygen species generation. However, the relative importance of these and other pathways is largely uncharacterized. Herein we review the current understanding of honey bee antiviral defense mechanisms and suggest important avenues for future investigation. PMID:26273564

  17. Physicochemical aspects and sensory profile of stingless bee honeys from Seridó region, State of Rio Grande do Norte, BrazilAspectos físico-químicos e perfil sensorial de méis de abelhas sem ferrão da região do Seridó, Estado do Rio Grande do Norte, Brasil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janaína Maria Batista Sousa

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Stingless bee honey is a highly valued product of the Seridó region, state of Rio Grande do Norte due to its specific sensory and nutritional characteristics. The objective of this study was to evaluate the physicochemical and sensory profile of stingless bee honeys produced in the Seridó region, state of Rio Grande do Norte. Twenty-nine honey samples from the following stingless bees were analyzed: M. subnitida D., Frieseomellita doederleini F., Melipona scutellaris L., Frieseomellita flavicornis, Scaptotrigrona SP, Nannotrigona testaceicornis L., Melipona compressipes fasciculada S., Melipona quadrifasciata Lep, Melipona quinquefasciata, M. scutellaris L. and Partamona helleri F. The composition considering moisture, total sugars, reducing sugars, apparent sucrose, protein, vitamin C, and ash, and the total acidity, pH, and color were evaluated. A sensory profile, considering the aroma, color, viscosity, flavor, acidity attributes and general acceptability, and the acceptability, regarding aroma, color and flavor, were also analyzed. The honeys were different (p O mel de abelhas sem ferrão é um produto bastante valorizado na região do Seridó do Rio Grande do Norte, em função de suas características nutritivas e sensoriais específicas. O objetivo do presente estudo foi avaliar os aspectos físico-químicos e perfil sensorial de méis de abelhas sem ferrão produzidos na região do Seridó do Rio Grande do Norte. Foram analisadas 29 amostras de mel das seguintes abelhas sem ferrão: M. subnitida D., Frieseomellita doederleini F., Melipona scutellaris L., Frieseomellita flavicornis, Scaptotrigrona SP, Nannotrigona testaceicornis L., Melipona compressipes fasciculada S., Melipona quadrifasciata Lep, Melipona quinquefasciata, M. scutellaris L. e Partamona helleri F. Os aspectos físico-químicos analisados foram: umidade, açúcares totais, açucares redutores, sacarose aparente, cinzas, acidez total, pH, proteína, vitamina C e cor

  18. Epigenetic modifications and their relation to caste and sex determination and adult division of labor in the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso-Júnior, Carlos A M; Fujimura, Patrícia Tieme; Santos-Júnior, Célio Dias; Borges, Naiara Araújo; Ueira-Vieira, Carlos; Hartfelder, Klaus; Goulart, Luiz Ricardo; Bonetti, Ana Maria

    2017-01-01

    Stingless bees of the genus Melipona, have long been considered an enigmatic case among social insects for their mode of caste determination, where in addition to larval food type and quantity, the genotype also has a saying, as proposed over 50 years ago by Warwick E. Kerr. Several attempts have since tried to test his Mendelian two-loci/two-alleles segregation hypothesis, but only recently a single gene crucial for sex determination in bees was evidenced to be sex-specifically spliced and also caste-specifically expressed in a Melipona species. Since alternative splicing is frequently associated with epigenetic marks, and the epigenetic status plays a major role in setting the caste phenotype in the honey bee, we investigated here epigenetic chromatin modification in the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris. We used an ELISA-based methodology to quantify global methylation status and western blot assays to reveal histone modifications. The results evidenced DNA methylation/demethylation events in larvae and pupae, and significant differences in histone methylation and phosphorylation between newly emerged adult queens and workers. The epigenetic dynamics seen in this stingless bee species represent a new facet in the caste determination process in Melipona bees and suggest a possible mechanism that is likely to link a genotype component to the larval diet and adult social behavior of these bees.

  19. Epigenetic modifications and their relation to caste and sex determination and adult division of labor in the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos A.M. Cardoso-Júnior

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Stingless bees of the genus Melipona, have long been considered an enigmatic case among social insects for their mode of caste determination, where in addition to larval food type and quantity, the genotype also has a saying, as proposed over 50 years ago by Warwick E. Kerr. Several attempts have since tried to test his Mendelian two-loci/two-alleles segregation hypothesis, but only recently a single gene crucial for sex determination in bees was evidenced to be sex-specifically spliced and also caste-specifically expressed in a Melipona species. Since alternative splicing is frequently associated with epigenetic marks, and the epigenetic status plays a major role in setting the caste phenotype in the honey bee, we investigated here epigenetic chromatin modification in the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris. We used an ELISA-based methodology to quantify global methylation status and western blot assays to reveal histone modifications. The results evidenced DNA methylation/demethylation events in larvae and pupae, and significant differences in histone methylation and phosphorylation between newly emerged adult queens and workers. The epigenetic dynamics seen in this stingless bee species represent a new facet in the caste determination process in Melipona bees and suggest a possible mechanism that is likely to link a genotype component to the larval diet and adult social behavior of these bees.

  20. Techniques for the In Vitro Production of Queens in Stingless Bees (Apidae, Meliponini)

    OpenAIRE

    Baptistella, Ana Rita; Souza, Camila C. M.; Santana, Weyder Cristiano; Egea Soares, Ademilson Espencer

    2012-01-01

    Considering the ecological importance of stingless bees as caretakers and pollinators of a variety of native plants makes it necessary to improve techniques which increase of colonies' number in order to preserve these species and the biodiversity associated with them. Thus, our aim was to develop a methodology of in vitro production of stingless bee queens by offering a large quantity of food to the larvae. Our methodology consisted of determining the amount of larval food needed for the dev...

  1. The antibacterial activity of propolis produced by Apis mellifera L. and Brazilian stingless bees

    OpenAIRE

    FERNANDES JR., A.; LEOMIL, L.; FERNANDES, A.A.H.; SFORCIN, J.M.

    2001-01-01

    This study investigated the antibacterial activity of propolis produced by A. mellifera and Brazilian stingless bees, called "meliponíneos". Susceptibility tests to ethanolic extracts of propolis (EEP) were performed using bacterial strains (Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus sp, and Escherichia coli) isolated from human infections. Dilution of EEP in agar (%v/v) was used for determination of minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC). The stingless bee species (and common names) were: Nannotrig...

  2. Physicochemical characteristics of pollen collected by Amazonian stingless bees

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    Kemilla Sarmento Rebelo

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to determine the physicochemical characteristics of pollen collected by the Amazonian stingless bees Melipona seminigra and Melipona interrupta , in order to verify whether their characteristics meet the physicochemical requirements established by the Brazilian Technical Regulation for Identity and Quality of Bee Pollen. Physicochemical analyses were performed through official analytical methods. Results of pollen analyses collected by M. seminigra and M. interrupta were respectively as follows: moisture: 53.39 and 37.12%; protein: 37.63 and 24.00%; lipids: 10.81 and 6.47%; ash: 4.03 and 2.74%; crude fiber: 9.30 and 13.65%; carbohydrates: 25.66 and 44.27%; energy: 350.47 and 331.33kcal%; pH: 3.70 and 3.34; total solids: 46.60 and 62.87%, and water activity: 0.91 and 0.85. The percentages of moisture and pH in pollen collected by both studied bees are not in agreement with the Technical Regulation for bee pollen. Since some characteristics, which are inherent to the Melipona pollen, were not in conform to the current Regulation, we recommend that further studies should be conducted to better characterize it, and correct the Regulation, if necessary.

  3. Honey bee hemocyte profiling by flow cytometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marringa, William J; Krueger, Michael J; Burritt, Nancy L; Burritt, James B

    2014-01-01

    Multiple stress factors in honey bees are causing loss of bee colonies worldwide. Several infectious agents of bees are believed to contribute to this problem. The mechanisms of honey bee immunity are not completely understood, in part due to limited information about the types and abundances of hemocytes that help bees resist disease. Our study utilized flow cytometry and microscopy to examine populations of hemolymph particulates in honey bees. We found bee hemolymph includes permeabilized cells, plasmatocytes, and acellular objects that resemble microparticles, listed in order of increasing abundance. The permeabilized cells and plasmatocytes showed unexpected differences with respect to properties of the plasma membrane and labeling with annexin V. Both permeabilized cells and plasmatocytes failed to show measurable mitochondrial membrane potential by flow cytometry using the JC-1 probe. Our results suggest hemolymph particulate populations are dynamic, revealing significant differences when comparing individual hive members, and when comparing colonies exposed to diverse conditions. Shifts in hemocyte populations in bees likely represent changing conditions or metabolic differences of colony members. A better understanding of hemocyte profiles may provide insight into physiological responses of honey bees to stress factors, some of which may be related to colony failure.

  4. Stingless bees (Hymenoptera, Meliponini feeding on stinkhorn spores (Fungi, Phallales: robbery or dispersal?

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    Marcio L. Oliveira

    2000-09-01

    Full Text Available Records about stingless bee-fungi interaction are very rare. In Brazilian Amazonia, workers of Trigona crassipes (Fabricius, 1793 and Trigona fulviventris Guérin, 1835 visiting two stinkhorn species, Dictyophora sp. and Phallus sp., respectively, were observed. The workers licked the fungi gleba, a mucilaginous mass of spores covering the pileum. Neither gleba residue nor spores were found on the body surface of these bee workers. These observations indicate that these bee species include spores as a complement in their diet. On the other hand, they also suggest that these stingless bees can, at times, facilitale spore dispersal, in case intact spores are eliminated with the feces.

  5. Appetite for self-destruction: suicidal biting as a nest defense strategy in Trigona stingless bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shackleton, Kyle; Al Toufailia, Hasan; Balfour, Nicholas J; Nascimento, Fabio S; Alves, Denise A; Ratnieks, Francis L W

    Self-sacrificial behavior represents an extreme and relatively uncommon form of altruism in worker insects. It can occur, however, when inclusive fitness benefits are high, such as when defending the nest. We studied nest defense behaviors in stingless bees, which live in eusocial colonies subject to predation. We introduced a target flag to nest entrances to elicit defensive responses and quantified four measures of defensivity in 12 stingless bee species in São Paulo State, Brazil. These included three Trigona species, which are locally known for their aggression. Species varied significantly in their attack probability (cross species range = 0-1, P  bees (3.5-508.7 s, P  bee. Our results indicate that suicidal biting may be a widespread defense strategy in stingless bees, but it is not universal.

  6. Red mason bees cannot compete with honey bees for floral resources in a cage experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudewenz, Anika; Klein, Alexandra-Maria

    2015-11-01

    Intensive beekeeping to mitigate crop pollination deficits and habitat loss may cause interspecific competition between bees. Studies show negative correlations between flower visitation of honey bees (Apis mellifera) and wild bees, but effects on the reproduction of wild bees were not proven. Likely reasons are that honey bees can hardly be excluded from controls and wild bee nests are generally difficult to detect in field experiments. The goal of this study was to investigate whether red mason bees (Osmia bicornis) compete with honey bees in cages in order to compare the reproduction of red mason bees under different honey bee densities. Three treatments were applied, each replicated in four cages of 18 m³ with 38 red mason bees in all treatments and 0, 100, and 300 honey bees per treatment with 10-20% being foragers. Within the cages, the flower visitation and interspecific displacements from flowers were observed. Niche breadths and resource overlaps of both bee species were calculated, and the reproduction of red mason bees was measured. Red mason bees visited fewer flowers when honey bees were present. Niche breadth of red mason bees decreased with increasing honey bee density while resource overlaps remained constant. The reproduction of red mason bees decreased in cages with honey bees. In conclusion, our experimental results show that in small and isolated flower patches, wild bees can temporarily suffer from competition with honey bees. Further research should aim to test for competition on small and isolated flower patches in real landscapes.

  7. The Plight of the Honey Bee

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hockridge, Emma

    2010-01-01

    The decline of colonies of honey bees across the world is threatening local plant biodiversity and human food supplies. Neonicotinoid pesticides have been implicated as a major cause of the problem and are banned or suspended in several countries. Other factors could also be lowering the resistance of bees to opportunist infections by, for…

  8. Honey bee surveillance: a tool for understanding and improving honey bee health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Kathleen; Steinhauer, Nathalie; Travis, Dominic A; Meixner, Marina D; Deen, John; vanEngelsdorp, Dennis

    2015-08-01

    Honey bee surveillance systems are increasingly used to characterize honey bee health and disease burdens of bees in different regions and/or over time. In addition to quantifying disease prevalence, surveillance systems can identify risk factors associated with colony morbidity and mortality. Surveillance systems are often observational, and prove particularly useful when searching for risk factors in real world complex systems. We review recent examples of surveillance systems with particular emphasis on how these efforts have helped increase our understanding of honey bee health. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Genetic stock identification of Russian honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourgeois, Lelania; Sheppard, Walter S; Sylvester, H Allen; Rinderer, Thomas E

    2010-06-01

    A genetic stock certification assay was developed to distinguish Russian honey bees from other European (Apis mellifera L.) stocks that are commercially produced in the United States. In total, 11 microsatellite and five single-nucleotide polymorphism loci were used. Loci were selected for relatively high levels of homogeneity within each group and for differences in allele frequencies between groups. A baseline sample consisted of the 18 lines of Russian honey bees released to the Russian Bee Breeders Association and bees from 34 queen breeders representing commercially produced European honey bee stocks. Suitability tests of the baseline sample pool showed high levels of accuracy. The probability of correct assignment was 94.2% for non-Russian bees and 93.3% for Russian bees. A neighbor-joining phenogram representing genetic distance data showed clear distinction of Russian and non-Russian honey bee stocks. Furthermore, a test of appropriate sample size showed a sample of eight bees per colony maximizes accuracy and consistency of the results. An additional 34 samples were tested as blind samples (origin unknown to those collecting data) to determine accuracy of individual assignment tests. Only one of these samples was incorrectly assigned. The 18 current breeding lines were represented among the 2009 blind sampling, demonstrating temporal stability of the genetic stock identification assay. The certification assay will be used through services provided by a service laboratory, by the Russian Bee Breeders Association to genetically certify their stock. The genetic certification will be used in conjunction with continued selection for favorable traits, such as honey production and varroa and tracheal mite resistance.

  10. Assessing Patterns of Admixture and Ancestry in Canadian Honey Bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canada has a large beekeeping industry comprised of 8483 beekeepers managing 672094 23 colonies. Canadian honey bees, like all honey bees in the New World, originate from centuries of importation of predominately European honey bees, but their precise ancestry remains unknown. There have been no i...

  11. Effects of Stingless Bee Propolis on Experimental Asthma

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    José Hidelbland Cavalcante de Farias

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Bee products have been used empirically for centuries, especially for the treatment of respiratory diseases. The present study evaluated the effect of treatment with a propolis hydroalcoholic extract (PHE produced by Scaptotrigona aff. postica stingless bee in a murine asthma model. BALB/c mice were immunized twice with ovalbumin (OVA subcutaneously. After 14 days, they were intranasally challenged with OVA. Groups P50 and P200 received PHE by gavage at doses of 50 and 200 mg/kg, respectively. The DEXA group was treated with intraperitoneal injection of dexamethasone. The OVA group received only water. The mice were treated daily for two weeks and then they were immunized a second time with intranasal OVA. The treatment with PHE decreased the cell number in the bronchoalveolar fluid (BAL. Histological analysis showed reduced peribronchovascular inflammation after treatment with PHE especially the infiltration of polymorphonuclear cells. In addition, the concentration of interferon-γ (IFN-γ in the serum was decreased. These results were similar to those obtained with dexamethasone. Treatment with S. aff postica propolis reduced the pathology associated with murine asthma due an inhibition of inflammatory cells migration to the alveolar space and the systemic progression of the allergic inflammation.

  12. Honey Bee Infecting Lake Sinai Viruses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daughenbaugh, Katie F; Martin, Madison; Brutscher, Laura M; Cavigli, Ian; Garcia, Emma; Lavin, Matt; Flenniken, Michelle L

    2015-06-23

    Honey bees are critical pollinators of important agricultural crops. Recently, high annual losses of honey bee colonies have prompted further investigation of honey bee infecting viruses. To better characterize the recently discovered and very prevalent Lake Sinai virus (LSV) group, we sequenced currently circulating LSVs, performed phylogenetic analysis, and obtained images of LSV2. Sequence analysis resulted in extension of the LSV1 and LSV2 genomes, the first detection of LSV4 in the US, and the discovery of LSV6 and LSV7. We detected LSV1 and LSV2 in the Varroa destructor mite, and determined that a large proportion of LSV2 is found in the honey bee gut, suggesting that vector-mediated, food-associated, and/or fecal-oral routes may be important for LSV dissemination. Pathogen-specific quantitative PCR data, obtained from samples collected during a small-scale monitoring project, revealed that LSV2, LSV1, Black queen cell virus (BQCV), and Nosema ceranae were more abundant in weak colonies than strong colonies within this sample cohort. Together, these results enhance our current understanding of LSVs and illustrate the importance of future studies aimed at investigating the role of LSVs and other pathogens on honey bee health at both the individual and colony levels.

  13. Honey Bee Infecting Lake Sinai Viruses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katie F. Daughenbaugh

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Honey bees are critical pollinators of important agricultural crops. Recently, high annual losses of honey bee colonies have prompted further investigation of honey bee infecting viruses. To better characterize the recently discovered and very prevalent Lake Sinai virus (LSV group, we sequenced currently circulating LSVs, performed phylogenetic analysis, and obtained images of LSV2. Sequence analysis resulted in extension of the LSV1 and LSV2 genomes, the first detection of LSV4 in the US, and the discovery of LSV6 and LSV7. We detected LSV1 and LSV2 in the Varroa destructor mite, and determined that a large proportion of LSV2 is found in the honey bee gut, suggesting that vector-mediated, food-associated, and/or fecal-oral routes may be important for LSV dissemination. Pathogen-specific quantitative PCR data, obtained from samples collected during a small-scale monitoring project, revealed that LSV2, LSV1, Black queen cell virus (BQCV, and Nosema ceranae were more abundant in weak colonies than strong colonies within this sample cohort. Together, these results enhance our current understanding of LSVs and illustrate the importance of future studies aimed at investigating the role of LSVs and other pathogens on honey bee health at both the individual and colony levels.

  14. The natural history of nest defence in a stingless bee, Tetragonisca angustula (Latreille) (Hymenoptera: Apidae), with two distinct types of entrance guards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grüter, C; Kärcher, M H; Ratnieks, F L W

    2011-01-01

    The stingless bee Tetragonsica angustula (Latreille) is the only social bee known that has two different types of nest entrance guards. As in other stingless bees and the honey bee one type stands on, in or near the nest entrance. The second type, so far only known in T. angustula, hovers near the nest entrance. In order to gain further understanding of this unique situation we studied guarding behaviour in both types of guards. Using marked bees, we found that individual worker bees guarded for a long time, up to 20 days, relative to their short, average c. 21 day, lifespan. Relatively few, 33%, individually marked guards were seen performing both types of guarding. The others only acted as standing guards. The bees that did perform both types did so over similar periods of their life. Hovering bouts were 57 min long, interrupted by breaks inside the hive of a few minutes (3.3 ± 1.5 min). Standing bouts were slightly longer (74 min) and also interrupted by short breaks (7.82 ± 6.45 min). Human breath, mimicking a vertebrate intruder, caused the guards to retreat into the nest rather than to attack the intruder. Some colonies protected themselves against intruders by closing the entrance during the night (32% and 56% of colonies during two nights). In summary, our results indicate that nest entrance guarding in T. angustula involves division of labour between the two types, in which most guarding individuals only act as standing guards.

  15. BEE VENOM TRAP DESIGN FOR PRODUCE BEE VENOM OF APIS MELLIFERA L. HONEY BEES

    OpenAIRE

    Budiaman

    2015-01-01

    Bee venom is one honey bee products are very expensive and are required in the pharmaceutical industry and as an anti-cancer known as nanobee, but the production technique is still done in the traditional way. The purpose of this study was to design a bee venom trap to produce bee venom of Apis mellifera L honey bees. The method used is to design several models of bee venom apparatus equipped weak current (DC current) with 3 variations of voltage, ie 12 volts, 15 volts and 18 volts coupled...

  16. Video Tracking Protocol to Screen Deterrent Chemistries for Honey Bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, Nicholas R; Anderson, Troy D

    2017-06-12

    The European honey bee, Apis mellifera L., is an economically and agriculturally important pollinator that generates billions of dollars annually. Honey bee colony numbers have been declining in the United States and many European countries since 1947. A number of factors play a role in this decline, including the unintentional exposure of honey bees to pesticides. The development of new methods and regulations are warranted to reduce pesticide exposures to these pollinators. One approach is the use of repellent chemistries that deter honey bees from a recently pesticide-treated crop. Here, we describe a protocol to discern the deterrence of honey bees exposed to select repellent chemistries. Honey bee foragers are collected and starved overnight in an incubator 15 h prior to testing. Individual honey bees are placed into Petri dishes that have either a sugar-agarose cube (control treatment) or sugar-agarose-compound cube (repellent treatment) placed into the middle of the dish. The Petri dish serves as the arena that is placed under a camera in a light box to record the honey bee locomotor activities using video tracking software. A total of 8 control and 8 repellent treatments were analyzed for a 10 min period with each treatment was duplicated with new honey bees. Here, we demonstrate that honey bees are deterred from the sugar-agarose cubes with a compound treatment whereas honey bees are attracted to the sugar-agarose cubes without an added compound.

  17. Espectro polínico de amostras de mel de Melipona mandacaia Smith, 1863 (Hymenoptera: Apidae - DOI: 10.4025/actascibiolsci.v28i1.1061 Pollen spectrum from honey samples of Melipona mandacaia Smith, 1863 stingless bee (Hymenoptera: Apidae - DOI: 10.4025/actascibiolsci.v28i1.1061

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Afredo Lopes de Carvalho

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available O espectro polínico de amostras de mel da abelha Melipona mandacaia foi analisado com objetivo de elucidar os recursos alimentares utilizados por essa espécie. A identificação das plantas visitadas foi realizada com base na análise dos tipos polínicos encontrados nas amostras de mel coletadas em 11 colônias localizadas no município de São Gabriel, em área de caatinga do Estado da Bahia, Brasil (11º14’S e 41º52’W. As análises quantitativas e qualitativas foram realizadas com o objetivo de determinar as porcentagens e classes de freqüência dos tipos polínicos presentes nas amostras de mel. Foram encontrados 26 tipos polínicos, sendo o tipo Piptadenia rigida (Mimosaceae considerado dominante. Ricinus communis (Euphorbiaceae, Mimosa verrucata (Mimosaceae e M. arenosa (Mimosaceae foram considerados pólen isolado importante. As famílias mais representativas no espectro polínico das amostras de mel foram Mimosaceae, Euphorbiaceae, Asteraceae e AnacardiaceaeThe pollen spectrum from honey samples of Melipona mandacaia stingless bee was analyzed aiming at elucidating the alimentary resources used by that species. The identification of the visited plants was based on the analysis of pollen from honey samples collected in 11 hives located in São Gabriel county, in the semiarid area of Bahia State, Brazil (11º14’S and 41º52’W. The quantitative and qualitative analyses of honey samples were conducted in order to determine the pollen types percentages and frequency classes. Twenty-six pollen types were found, being the Piptadenia rigida type (Mimosaceae considered dominant. Ricinus communis (Euphorbiaceae, Mimosa verrucata (Mimosaceae and M. arenosa (Mimosaceae were considered important isolated pollen. The most representative families found in the pollen spectrum of the honey samples were Mimosaceae, Euphorbiaceae, Asteraceae and Anacardiaceae

  18. Nesting sites characteristics of stingless bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia

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    Nelky Suriawanto

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Stingless bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae is eusocial insects that live together in a colony. This research was aimed to study the nesting site characteristics of stingless bees in the settlement areas at Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. The nesting sites were observed by purposive sampling method from July 2015 to January 2016. Four species belong to genus Tetragonula were found, namely T. fuscobalteata, T. biroi, T. sapiens, and T. laeviceps. Two spesies, T. biroi and T. sapiens are the new record in Sulawesi island. The highest abundance of stingless bees colony was T. fuscobalteata (92.26%, followed by T. biroi (4.17%, T. sapiens (2.98%, and T. laeviceps (0.59%. Nesting sites of T. fuscobalteata were found in the stone, brick wall, wooden wall, bamboo, and iron cavities, T. biroi in the wooden wall, stone, and brick wall cavities, T. sapiens in stone cavities, while T. laeviceps in wooden walls.

  19. Enemy recognition is linked to soldier size in a polymorphic stingless bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grüter, Christoph; Segers, Francisca H I D; Santos, Luana L G; Hammel, Benedikt; Zimmermann, Uwe; Nascimento, Fabio S

    2017-10-01

    Many ant and termite colonies are defended by soldiers with powerful mandibles or chemical weaponry. Recently, it was reported that several stingless bee species also have soldiers for colony defence. These soldiers are larger than foragers, but otherwise lack obvious morphological adaptations for defence. Thus, how these soldiers improve colony fitness is not well understood. Robbing is common in stingless bees and we hypothesized that increased body size improves the ability to recognize intruders based on chemosensory cues. We studied the Neotropical species Tetragonisca angustula and found that large soldiers were better than small soldiers at recognizing potential intruders. Larger soldiers also had more olfactory pore plates on their antennae, which is likely to increase their chemosensory sensitivity. Our results suggest that improved enemy recognition might select for increased guard size in stingless bees. © 2017 The Author(s).

  20. Impact of managed honey bee viruses on wild bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tehel, Anja; Brown, Mark Jf; Paxton, Robert J

    2016-08-01

    Several viruses found in the Western honey bee (Apis mellifera) have recently been detected in other bee species, raising the possibility of spill-over from managed to wild bee species. Alternatively, these viruses may be shared generalists across flower-visiting insects. Here we explore the former hypothesis, pointing out weaknesses in the current evidence, particularly in relation to deformed wing virus (DWV), and highlighting research areas that may help test it. Data so far suggest that DWV spills over from managed to wild bee species and has the potential to cause population decline. That DWV and other viruses of A. mellifera are found in other bee species needs to be considered for the sustainable management of bee populations. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Intrinsic colony conditions affect the provisioning and oviposition process in the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, R A; Morais, M M; Nascimento, F S; Bego, L R

    2009-01-01

    The cell provisioning and oviposition process (POP) is a unique characteristic of stingless bees (Meliponini), in which coordinated interactions between workers and queen regulate the filling of brood cells with larval resources and subsequent egg laying. Environmental conditions seem to regulate reproduction in stingless bees; however, little is known about how the amount of food affects quantitative sequences of the process. We examined intrinsic variables by comparing three colonies in distinct conditions (strong, intermediate and weak state). We predicted that some of these variables are correlated with temporal events of POP in Melipona scutellaris colonies. The results demonstrated that the strong colony had shorter periods of POP.

  2. Antimicrobial and antiproliferative activities of stingless bee Melipona scutellaris geopropolis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    da Cunha Marcos Guilherme

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Geopropolis is a type of propolis containing resin, wax, and soil, collected by threatened stingless bee species native to tropical countries and used in folk medicine. However, studies concerning the biological activity and chemical composition of geopropolis are scarce. In this study, we evaluated the antimicrobial and antiproliferative activity of the ethanolic extract of geopropolis (EEGP collected by Melipona scutellaris and its bioactive fraction against important clinical microorganisms as well as their in vitro cytotoxicity and chemical profile. Methods The antimicrobial activity of EEGP and fractions was examined by determining their minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC and minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC against six bacteria strains as well as their ability to inhibit Streptococcus mutans biofilm adherence. Total growth inhibition (TGI was chosen to assay the antiproliferative activity of EEGP and its bioactive fraction against normal and cancer cell lines. The chemical composition of M. scutellaris geopropolis was identified by reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography and gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. Results EEGP significantly inhibited the growth of Staphylococcus aureus strains and S. mutans at low concentrations, and its hexane fraction (HF presented the highest antibacterial activity. Also, both EEGP and HF inhibited S. mutans biofilm adherence (p Conclusions The empirical use of this unique type of geopropolis by folk medicine practitioners was confirmed in the present study, since it showed antimicrobial and antiproliferative potential against the cancer cell lines studied. It is possible that the major compounds found in this type of geopropolis are responsible for its properties.

  3. Tropilaelaps mite: an emerging threat to European honey bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chantawannakul, Panuwan; Ramsey, Samuel; vanEngelsdorp, Dennis; Khongphinitbunjong, Kitiphong; Phokasem, Patcharin

    2018-04-01

    The risk of transmission of honey bee parasites has increased substantially as a result of trade globalization and technical developments in transportation efficacy. Great concern over honey bee decline has accelerated research on newly emerging bee pests and parasites. These organisms are likely to emerge from Asia as it is the only region where all 10 honey bee species co-occur. Varroa destructor, an ectoparasitic mite, is a classic example of a pest that has shifted from A. cerana, a cavity nesting Asian honey bee to A. mellifera, the European honey bee. In this review, we will describe the potential risks to global apiculture of the global expansion of Tropilaelaps mercedesae, originally a parasite of the open-air nesting Asian giant honey bee, compared to the impact of V. destructor. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Medicinal and cosmetic uses of Bee's Honey - A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ediriweera, E R H S S; Premarathna, N Y S

    2012-04-01

    Bee's honey is one of the most valued and appreciated natural substances known to mankind since ancient times. There are many types of bee's honey mentioned in Ayurveda. Their effects differ and 'Makshika' is considered medicinally the best. According to modern scientific view, the best bee's honey is made by Apis mellifera (Family: Apidae). In Sri Lanka, the predominant honey-maker bee is Apis cerana. The aim of this survey is to emphasize the importance of bee's honey and its multitude of medicinal, cosmetic and general values. Synonyms, details of formation, constitution, properties, and method of extraction and the usages of bee's honey are gathered from text books, traditional and Ayurvedic physicians of Western and Southern provinces, villagers of 'Kalahe' in Galle district of Sri Lanka and from few search engines. Fresh bee's honey is used in treatment of eye diseases, throat infections, bronchial asthma, tuberculosis, hiccups, thirst, dizziness, fatigue, hepatitis, worm infestation, constipation, piles, eczema, healing of wounds, ulcers and used as a nutritious, easily digestible food for weak people. It promotes semen, mental health and used in cosmetic purposes. Old bee's honey is used to treat vomiting, diarrhea, rheumatoid arthritis, obesity, diabetes mellitus and in preserving meat and fruits. Highly popular in cosmetic treatment, bee's honey is used in preparing facial washes, skin moisturizers, hair conditioners and in treatment of pimples. Bee's honey could be considered as one of the finest products of nature that has a wide range of beneficial uses.

  5. Testing Honey Bees' Avoidance of Predators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Jesse Wade; Nieh, James C.; Goodale, Eben

    2012-01-01

    Many high school science students do not encounter opportunities for authentic science inquiry in their formal coursework. Ecological field studies can provide such opportunities. The purpose of this project was to teach students about the process of science by designing and conducting experiments on whether and how honey bees (Apis mellifera)…

  6. Diversity of Stingless Bees (Hymenoptera:Meliponini) Used in Meliponiculture in Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nates Parra, Guiomar; Rosso Londono, Juan Manuel

    2013-01-01

    There are close to 120 species of native stingless bees in Colombia, many of them with important uses and meanings for diverse social and cultural groups. The stingless beekeeping (meliponiculture) is an activity in process of growth and technification in Latin America and other regions, but there are a little information about their characteristics and development in Colombia. Through information collected by interviews to 75 stingless beekeepers of 16 departments of Colombia, 25 species of stingless bees were identified, grouped in 12 genera. Approximately nine more uncertain species were also found, four new records for the country are presented, and geographical distribution, urban beekeeping and vernacular names reported. The characteristics of most common cultivated genera (Tetragonisca, Melipona, Paratrigona, Scaptotrigona and Nannotrigona) are presented, and the importance of the link between biological and cultural diversity revealed in vernacular names, are discussed. Facing a growing of meliponiculture in the world, some research needs and risks for the conservation and management of the diversity of stingless bees and related knowledge are remarked.

  7. Invasion of Varroa mites into honey bee brood cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boot, W.J.

    1995-01-01

    The parasitic mite Varroa-jacobsoni is one of the most serious pests of Western honey bees, Apis mellifera. The mites parasitize adult bees, but reproduction only occurs while parasitizing on honey bee brood. Invasion into a

  8. Antimicrobial and antiproliferative activities of stingless bee Melipona scutellaris geopropolis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Cunha, Marcos Guilherme; Franchin, Marcelo; de Carvalho Galvão, Lívia Câmara; de Ruiz, Ana Lúcia Tasca Góis; de Carvalho, João Ernesto; Ikegaki, Masarahu; de Alencar, Severino Matias; Koo, Hyun; Rosalen, Pedro Luiz

    2013-01-28

    Geopropolis is a type of propolis containing resin, wax, and soil, collected by threatened stingless bee species native to tropical countries and used in folk medicine. However, studies concerning the biological activity and chemical composition of geopropolis are scarce. In this study, we evaluated the antimicrobial and antiproliferative activity of the ethanolic extract of geopropolis (EEGP) collected by Melipona scutellaris and its bioactive fraction against important clinical microorganisms as well as their in vitro cytotoxicity and chemical profile. The antimicrobial activity of EEGP and fractions was examined by determining their minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) and minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) against six bacteria strains as well as their ability to inhibit Streptococcus mutans biofilm adherence. Total growth inhibition (TGI) was chosen to assay the antiproliferative activity of EEGP and its bioactive fraction against normal and cancer cell lines. The chemical composition of M. scutellaris geopropolis was identified by reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. EEGP significantly inhibited the growth of Staphylococcus aureus strains and S. mutans at low concentrations, and its hexane fraction (HF) presented the highest antibacterial activity. Also, both EEGP and HF inhibited S. mutans biofilm adherence (p < 0.05) and showed selectivity against human cancer cell lines, although only HF demonstrated selectivity at low concentrations. The chemical analyses performed suggest the absence of flavonoids and the presence of benzophenones as geopropolis major compounds. The empirical use of this unique type of geopropolis by folk medicine practitioners was confirmed in the present study, since it showed antimicrobial and antiproliferative potential against the cancer cell lines studied. It is possible that the major compounds found in this type of geopropolis are responsible for its properties.

  9. Recent Honey Bee Colony Declines

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-06-20

    podcasts.psu.edu/taxonomy/term/62]. Staple crops such as wheat , corn, and rice do not rely on insect pollination and are mostly wind pollinated...are interacting to weaken bee colonies and are allowing stress-related pathogens, such as fungi , thus causing a final collapse.27 Others note the...possible role of miticide resistance in bees. High levels of bacteria, viruses, and fungi have been found in the guts of the recoverable dead bees

  10. Chemical profiles of body surfaces and nests from six Bornean stingless bee species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonhardt, Sara Diana; Blüthgen, Nico; Schmitt, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Stingless bees (Apidae: Meliponini) are the most diverse group of Apid bees and represent common pollinators in tropical ecosystems. Like honeybees they live in large eusocial colonies and rely on complex chemical recognition and communication systems. In contrast to honeybees, their ecology and especially their chemical ecology have received only little attention, particularly in the Old World. We previously have analyzed the chemical profiles of six paleotropical stingless bee species from Borneo and revealed the presence of species-specific cuticular terpenes- an environmentally derived compound class so far unique among social insects. Here, we compared the bees' surface profiles to the chemistry of their nest material. Terpenes, alkanes, and alkenes were the dominant compound groups on both body surfaces and nest material. However, bee profiles and nests strongly differed in their chemical composition. Body surfaces thus did not merely mirror nests, rendering a passive compound transfer from nests to bees unlikely. The difference between nests and bees was particularly pronounced when all resin-derived compounds (terpenes) were excluded and only genetically determined compounds were considered. When terpenes were included, bee profiles and nest material still differed, because whole groups of terpenes (e.g., sesquiterpenes) were found in nest material of some species, but missing in their chemical profile, indicating that bees are able to influence the terpene composition both in their nests and on their surfaces.

  11. Effects of honey bee (Hymenoptera: Apidae) and bumble bee (Hymenoptera: Apidae) presence on cranberry (Ericales: Ericaceae) pollination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, E C; Spivak, M

    2006-06-01

    Honey bees, Apis mellifera L., are frequently used to pollinate commercial cranberries, Vaccinium macrocarpon Ait., but information is lacking on the relative contribution of honey bees and native bees, the effects of surrounding vegetation on bee visitation, and on optimal timing for honey bee introduction. We begin with a descriptive study of numbers of honey bees, bumble bees, and other bees visiting cranberry blossoms, and their subsequent effect on cranberry yield, on three cranberry properties in 1999. The property surrounded by agricultural land, as opposed to wetlands and woodlands, had fewer numbers of all bee types. In 2000, one property did not introduce honey bee colonies, providing an opportunity to document the effect of lack of honey bees on yield. With no honey bees, plants along the edge of the bed had significantly higher berry weights compared with nonedge plants, suggesting that wild pollinators were only effective along the edge. Comparing the same bed between 1999, with three honey bee colonies per acre, and 2000, with no honey bees, we found a significant reduction in average berry size. In 2000, we compared stigma loading on properties with and without honey bees. Significantly more stigmas received the minimum number of tetrads required for fruit set on the property with honey bees. Significantly more tetrads were deposited during mid-bloom compared with early bloom, indicating that mid-bloom was the best time to have honey bees present. This study emphasizes the importance and effectiveness of honey bees as pollinators of commercial size cranberry plantings.

  12. Pollution monitoring of puget sound with honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bromenshenk, J J; Carlson, S R; Simpson, J C; Thomas, J M

    1985-02-08

    To show that honey bees are effective biological monitors of environmental contaminants over large geographic areas, beekeepers of Puget Sound, Washington, collected pollen and bees for chemical analysis. From these data, kriging maps of arsenic, cadmium, and fluoride were generated. Results, based on actual concentrations of contaminants in bee tissues, show that the greatest concentrations of contaminants occur close to Commencement Bay and that honey bees are effective as large-scale monitors.

  13. Effect of Citrus floral extracts on the foraging behavior of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona pectoralis (Dalla Torre)

    OpenAIRE

    Grajales-Conesa,Julieta; Meléndez Ramírez,Virginia; Cruz-López,Leopoldo; Sánchez Guillén,Daniel

    2012-01-01

    Effect of Citrus floral extracts on the foraging behavior of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona pectoralis (Dalla Torre). Stingless bees have an important role as pollinators of many wild and cultivated plant species in tropical regions. Little is known, however, about the interaction between floral fragrances and the foraging behavior of meliponine species. Thus we investigated the chemical composition of the extracts of citric (lemon and orange) flowers and their effects on the foraging behavi...

  14. Toxicity of Imidacloprid to the Stingless Bee Scaptotrigona postica Latreille, 1807 (Hymenoptera: Apidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soares, Hellen Maria; Jacob, Cynthia Renata Oliveira; Carvalho, Stephan Malfitano; Nocelli, Roberta Cornélio Ferreira; Malaspina, Osmar

    2015-06-01

    The stingless bee Scaptotrigona postica is an important pollinator of native and cultivated plants in Brazil. Among the factors affecting the survival of these insects is the indiscriminate use of insecticides, including the neonicotinoid imidacloprid. This work determined the toxicity of imidacloprid as the topical median lethal dose (LD50) and the oral median lethal concentration (LC50) as tools for assessing the effects of this insecticide. The 24 and 48 h LD50 values were 25.2 and 24.5 ng of active ingredient (a.i.)/bee, respectively. The 24 and 48 h LC50 values were 42.5 and 14.3 ng a.i./µL of diet, respectively. Ours results show the hazard of imidacloprid and the vulnerability of stingless bees to it, providing relevant toxicological data that can used in mitigation programs to ensure the conservation of this species.

  15. Taxonomy Icon Data: honey bee [Taxonomy Icon

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available honey bee Apis mellifera Arthropoda Apis_mellifera_L.png Apis_mellifera_NL.png Apis_mellife...ra_S.png Apis_mellifera_NS.png http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Apis+mellifera&t=L h...ttp://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Apis+mellifera&t=NL http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Apis+mellife...ra&t=S http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Apis+mellifera&t=NS ...

  16. General Stress Responses in the Honey Bee

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naïla Even

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The biological concept of stress originated in mammals, where a “General Adaptation Syndrome” describes a set of common integrated physiological responses to diverse noxious agents. Physiological mechanisms of stress in mammals have been extensively investigated through diverse behavioral and physiological studies. One of the main elements of the stress response pathway is the endocrine hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA axis, which underlies the “fight-or-flight” response via a hormonal cascade of catecholamines and corticoid hormones. Physiological responses to stress have been studied more recently in insects: they involve biogenic amines (octopamine, dopamine, neuropeptides (allatostatin, corazonin and metabolic hormones (adipokinetic hormone, diuretic hormone. Here, we review elements of the physiological stress response that are or may be specific to honey bees, given the economical and ecological impact of this species. This review proposes a hypothetical integrated honey bee stress pathway somewhat analogous to the mammalian HPA, involving the brain and, particularly, the neurohemal organ corpora cardiaca and peripheral targets, including energy storage organs (fat body and crop. We discuss how this system can organize rapid coordinated changes in metabolic activity and arousal, in response to adverse environmental stimuli. We highlight physiological elements of the general stress responses that are specific to honey bees, and the areas in which we lack information to stimulate more research into how this fascinating and vital insect responds to stress.

  17. Honey Bee Viruses in Wild Bees: Viral Prevalence, Loads, and Experimental Inoculation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dolezal, Adam G.; Hendrix, Stephen D.; Scavo, Nicole A.; Carrillo-Tripp, Jimena; Harris, Mary A.; Wheelock, M. Joseph; O’Neal, Matthew E.; Toth, Amy L.

    2016-01-01

    Evidence of inter-species pathogen transmission from managed to wild bees has sparked concern that emerging diseases could be causing or exacerbating wild bee declines. While some pathogens, like RNA viruses, have been found in pollen and wild bees, the threat these viruses pose to wild bees is largely unknown. Here, we tested 169 bees, representing 4 families and 8 genera, for five common honey bee (Apis mellifera) viruses, finding that more than 80% of wild bees harbored at least one virus. We also quantified virus titers in these bees, providing, for the first time, an assessment of viral load in a broad spectrum of wild bees. Although virus detection was very common, virus levels in the wild bees were minimal—similar to or lower than foraging honey bees and substantially lower than honey bees collected from hives. Furthermore, when we experimentally inoculated adults of two different bee species (Megachile rotundata and Colletes inaequalis) with a mixture of common viruses that is lethal to honey bees, we saw no effect on short term survival. Overall, we found that honey bee RNA viruses can be commonly detected at low levels in many wild bee species, but we found no evidence that these pathogens cause elevated short-term mortality effects. However, more work on these viruses is greatly needed to assess effects on additional bee species and life stages. PMID:27832169

  18. Honey Bee Viruses in Wild Bees: Viral Prevalence, Loads, and Experimental Inoculation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dolezal, Adam G; Hendrix, Stephen D; Scavo, Nicole A; Carrillo-Tripp, Jimena; Harris, Mary A; Wheelock, M Joseph; O'Neal, Matthew E; Toth, Amy L

    2016-01-01

    Evidence of inter-species pathogen transmission from managed to wild bees has sparked concern that emerging diseases could be causing or exacerbating wild bee declines. While some pathogens, like RNA viruses, have been found in pollen and wild bees, the threat these viruses pose to wild bees is largely unknown. Here, we tested 169 bees, representing 4 families and 8 genera, for five common honey bee (Apis mellifera) viruses, finding that more than 80% of wild bees harbored at least one virus. We also quantified virus titers in these bees, providing, for the first time, an assessment of viral load in a broad spectrum of wild bees. Although virus detection was very common, virus levels in the wild bees were minimal-similar to or lower than foraging honey bees and substantially lower than honey bees collected from hives. Furthermore, when we experimentally inoculated adults of two different bee species (Megachile rotundata and Colletes inaequalis) with a mixture of common viruses that is lethal to honey bees, we saw no effect on short term survival. Overall, we found that honey bee RNA viruses can be commonly detected at low levels in many wild bee species, but we found no evidence that these pathogens cause elevated short-term mortality effects. However, more work on these viruses is greatly needed to assess effects on additional bee species and life stages.

  19. Wild bees enhance honey bees’ pollination of hybrid sunflower

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenleaf, Sarah S.; Kremen, Claire

    2006-01-01

    Pollinators are required for producing 15–30% of the human food supply, and farmers rely on managed honey bees throughout the world to provide these services. Yet honey bees are not always the most efficient pollinators of all crops and are declining in various parts of the world. Crop pollination shortages are becoming increasingly common. We found that behavioral interactions between wild and honey bees increase the pollination efficiency of honey bees on hybrid sunflower up to 5-fold, effectively doubling honey bee pollination services on the average field. These indirect contributions caused by interspecific interactions between wild and honey bees were more than five times more important than the contributions wild bees make to sunflower pollination directly. Both proximity to natural habitat and crop planting practices were significantly correlated with pollination services provided directly and indirectly by wild bees. Our results suggest that conserving wild habitat at the landscape scale and altering selected farm management techniques could increase hybrid sunflower production. These findings also demonstrate the economic importance of interspecific interactions for ecosystem services and suggest that protecting wild bee populations can help buffer the human food supply from honey bee shortages. PMID:16940358

  20. Oral toxicity of fipronil insecticide against the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris (Latreille, 1811).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lourenço, Clara Tavares; Carvalho, Stephan Malfitano; Malaspina, Osmar; Nocelli, Roberta Cornélio Ferreira

    2012-10-01

    For a better evaluation of the model using Apis mellifera in toxicology studies with insecticides, the oral acute toxicity of the insecticide fipronil against the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris was determined. The results showed that fipronil was highly toxic to M. scutellaris, with a calculated LC(50) (48 h) value of 0.011 ng a.i./μL of sucrose solution and an estimated oral LD(50) (48 h) of 0.6 ng a.i./bee. Our results showed that M. scutellaris bee is more sensitive to fipronil than the model specie A. mellifera.

  1. Occurrence of Nosema species in honey bee colonies in Kenya ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    While honey bee colonies in North America and Europe are in decline due to parasites and ... Infections levels were higher in the coastal region than in the interior. ... of the impact of this pathogen to the Kenyan honey bee colonies with a view of ... Senegal (6); Sierra Leone (1); South Africa (96); South Sudan (1); Sudan (3) ...

  2. Biopesticide-induced behavioral and morphological alterations in the stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbosa, Wagner F; Tomé, Hudson Vaner V; Bernardes, Rodrigo C; Siqueira, Maria Augusta L; Smagghe, Guy; Guedes, Raul Narciso C

    2015-09-01

    Because of their natural origin, biopesticides are assumed to be less harmful to beneficial insects, including bees, and therefore their use has been widely encouraged for crop protection. There is little evidence, however, to support this ingrained notion of biopesticide safety to pollinators. Because larval exposure is still largely unexplored in ecotoxicology and risk assessment on bees, an investigation was performed on the lethal and sublethal effects of a diet treated with 2 bioinsecticides, azadirachtin and spinosad, on the stingless bee, Melipona quadrifasciata, which is one of the most important pollinators in the Neotropics. Survival of stingless bee larvae was significantly compromised at doses above 210 ng a.i./bee for azadirachtin and 114 ng a.i./bee for spinosad. No sublethal effect was observed on larvae developmental time, but doses of both compounds negatively affected pupal body mass. Azadirachtin produced deformed pupae and adults as a result of its insect growth regulator properties, but spinosad was more harmful and produced greater numbers of deformed individuals. Only spinosad compromised walking activity of the adult workers at doses as low as 2.29 ng a.i./bee, which is 1/5000 of the maximum field recommended rate. In conclusion, the results demonstrated that bioinsecticides can pose significant risks to native pollinators with lethal and sublethal effects; future investigations are needed on the likelihood of such effects under field conditions. © 2015 SETAC.

  3. Omega-3 deficiency impairs honey bee learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arien, Yael; Dag, Arnon; Zarchin, Shlomi; Masci, Tania

    2015-01-01

    Deficiency in essential omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), particularly the long-chain form of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), has been linked to health problems in mammals, including many mental disorders and reduced cognitive performance. Insects have very low long-chain PUFA concentrations, and the effect of omega-3 deficiency on cognition in insects has not been studied. We show a low omega-6:3 ratio of pollen collected by honey bee colonies in heterogenous landscapes and in many hand-collected pollens that we analyzed. We identified Eucalyptus as an important bee-forage plant particularly poor in omega-3 and high in the omega-6:3 ratio. We tested the effect of dietary omega-3 deficiency on olfactory and tactile associative learning of the economically highly valued honey bee. Bees fed either of two omega-3–poor diets, or Eucalyptus pollen, showed greatly reduced learning abilities in conditioned proboscis-extension assays compared with those fed omega-3–rich diets, or omega-3–rich pollen mixture. The effect on performance was not due to reduced sucrose sensitivity. Omega-3 deficiency also led to smaller hypopharyngeal glands. Bee brains contained high omega-3 concentrations, which were only slightly affected by diet, suggesting additional peripheral effects on learning. The shift from a low to high omega-6:3 ratio in the Western human diet is deemed a primary cause of many diseases and reduced mental health. A similar shift seems to be occurring in bee forage, possibly an important factor in colony declines. Our study shows the detrimental effect on cognitive performance of omega-3 deficiency in a nonmammal. PMID:26644556

  4. Physico-chemical properties of honeys produced by two stingless ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Calcium (Ca), phosphorus (P) and sodium (Na) contents were 25.43%, 0.76%, and 12.67% for Trigona carbonaria honey and 26.51%, 1.03% and 11.96% for Melipona beecheii .The fructose, glucose, reducing sugar, higher sugar, sucrose and calorific value contents of Trigona carbonaria honey were 37.25%, 31.64%, ...

  5. Bee pollen extract of Malaysian stingless bee enhances the effect of cisplatin on breast cancer cell lines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wan Adnan Wan Omar

    2016-03-01

    Conclusions: Our study therefore suggested that BPE of Malaysian stingless bee, L. terminata is a potential chemopreventive agent and can be used as a supplementary treatment for chemotherapy drugs. BPE might be able to be used to potentiate the effect of chemotherapy drugs with the possibility to reduce the required dose of the drugs. The molecular mechanisms of how the BPE exerts antiproliferative activity will be a much interesting area to look for in future studies.

  6. Urbanization Increases Pathogen Pressure on Feral and Managed Honey Bees

    OpenAIRE

    Youngsteadt, Elsa; Appler, R. Holden; L?pez-Uribe, Margarita M.; Tarpy, David R.; Frank, Steven D.

    2015-01-01

    Given the role of infectious disease in global pollinator decline, there is a need to understand factors that shape pathogen susceptibility and transmission in bees. Here we ask how urbanization affects the immune response and pathogen load of feral and managed colonies of honey bees (Apis mellifera Linnaeus), the predominant economically important pollinator worldwide. Using quantitative real-time PCR, we measured expression of 4 immune genes and relative abundance of 10 honey bee pathogens....

  7. Origins of brain asymmetry: lateralization of odour memory recall in primitive Australian stingless bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frasnelli, Elisa; Vallortigara, Giorgio; Rogers, Lesley J

    2011-10-10

    Left-right antennal asymmetry has been reported in honeybees. We studied primitive social bees to investigate the evolutionary origins of the asymmetry. Three species of Australian native, stingless bees (Trigona carbonaria, Trigona hockingsi and Austroplebeia australis) were trained to discriminate two odours, lemon (+)/vanilla (-), using the Proboscis Extension Reflex (PER). Recall of the olfactory memory at 1h after training was better when the odour was presented on the right than on the left side of the bee. In contrast, recall at 5h after training was better when the odour was presented on the left than on the right side of the bee. An additional experiment with T. hockingsi bees, fed with sugar 1h before recall and tested at 5h, produced similar results, showing that the shift in lateralized recall was due to the lapse of time per se and not to changes in motivation to feed. Stingless bees show the same laterality as honeybees, suggesting that asymmetry evolved prior to the evolutionary divergence of these species. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Innate colour preferences of the Australian native stingless bee Tetragonula carbonaria Sm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyer, Adrian G; Boyd-Gerny, Skye; Shrestha, Mani; Lunau, Klaus; Garcia, Jair E; Koethe, Sebastian; Wong, Bob B M

    2016-10-01

    Innate preferences promote the capacity of pollinators to find flowers. Honeybees and bumblebees have strong preferences for 'blue' stimuli, and flowers of this colour typically present higher nectar rewards. Interestingly, flowers from multiple different locations around the world independently have the same distribution in bee colour space. Currently, however, there is a paucity of data on the innate colour preferences of stingless bees that are often implicated as being key pollinators in many parts of the world. In Australia, the endemic stingless bee Tetragonula carbonaria is widely distributed and known to be an efficient pollinator of both native plants and agricultural crops. In controlled laboratory conditions, we tested the innate colour responses of naïve bees using standard broadband reflectance stimuli representative of common flower colours. Colorimetric analyses considering hymenopteran vision and a hexagon colour space revealed a difference between test colonies, and a significant effect of green contrast and an interaction effect of green contrast with spectral purity on bee choices. We also observed colour preferences for stimuli from the blue and blue-green categorical regions of colour space. Our results are discussed in relation to the similar distribution of flower colours observed from bee pollination around the world.

  9. Experience, but not distance, influences the recruitment precision in the stingless bee Scaptotrigona mexicana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez, Daniel; Kraus, F. Bernhard; Hernández, Manuel De Jesús; Vandame, Rémy

    2007-07-01

    Recruitment precision, i.e. the proportion of recruits that reach an advertised food source, is a crucial adaptation of social bees to their environment. Studies with honeybees showed that recruitment precision is not a fixed feature, but it may be enhanced by factors like experience and distance. However, little is known regarding the recruitment precision of stingless bees. Hence, in this study, we examined the effects of experience and spatial distance on the precision of the food communication system of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona mexicana. We conducted the experiments by training bees to a three-dimensional artificial patch at several distances from the colony. We recorded the choices of individual recruited foragers, either being newcomers (foragers without experience with the advertised food source) or experienced (foragers that had previously visited the feeder). We found that the average precision of newcomers (95.6 ± 2.61%) was significantly higher than that of experienced bees (80.2 ± 1.12%). While this might seem counter-intuitive on first sight, this “loss” of precision can be explained by the tendency of experienced recruits to explore nearby areas to find new rewarding food sources after they had initially learned the exact location of the food source. Increasing the distance from the colony had no significant effect on the precision of the foraging bees. Thus, our data show that experience, but not the distance of the food source, affected the patch precision of S. mexicana foragers.

  10. RNAi and Antiviral Defense in the Honey Bee

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brutscher, Laura M.; Flenniken, Michelle L.

    2015-01-01

    Honey bees play an important agricultural and ecological role as pollinators of numerous agricultural crops and other plant species. Therefore, investigating the factors associated with high annual losses of honey bee colonies in the US is an important and active area of research. Pathogen incidence and abundance correlate with Colony Collapse Disorder- (CCD-) affected colonies in the US and colony losses in the US and in some European countries. Honey bees are readily infected by single-stranded positive sense RNA viruses. Largely dependent on the host immune response, virus infections can either remain asymptomatic or result in deformities, paralysis, or death of adults or larvae. RNA interference (RNAi) is an important antiviral defense mechanism in insects, including honey bees. Herein, we review the role of RNAi in honey bee antiviral defense and highlight some parallels between insect and mammalian immune systems. A more thorough understanding of the role of pathogens on honey bee health and the immune mechanisms bees utilize to combat infectious agents may lead to the development of strategies that enhance honey bee health and result in the discovery of additional mechanisms of immunity in metazoans. PMID:26798663

  11. RNAi and Antiviral Defense in the Honey Bee

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura M. Brutscher

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Honey bees play an important agricultural and ecological role as pollinators of numerous agricultural crops and other plant species. Therefore, investigating the factors associated with high annual losses of honey bee colonies in the US is an important and active area of research. Pathogen incidence and abundance correlate with Colony Collapse Disorder- (CCD- affected colonies in the US and colony losses in the US and in some European countries. Honey bees are readily infected by single-stranded positive sense RNA viruses. Largely dependent on the host immune response, virus infections can either remain asymptomatic or result in deformities, paralysis, or death of adults or larvae. RNA interference (RNAi is an important antiviral defense mechanism in insects, including honey bees. Herein, we review the role of RNAi in honey bee antiviral defense and highlight some parallels between insect and mammalian immune systems. A more thorough understanding of the role of pathogens on honey bee health and the immune mechanisms bees utilize to combat infectious agents may lead to the development of strategies that enhance honey bee health and result in the discovery of additional mechanisms of immunity in metazoans.

  12. Climate change: impact on honey bee populations and diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Conte, Y; Navajas, M

    2008-08-01

    The European honey bee, Apis mellifera, is the most economically valuable pollinator of agricultural crops worldwide. Bees are also crucial in maintaining biodiversity by pollinating numerous plant species whose fertilisation requires an obligatory pollinator. Apis mellifera is a species that has shown great adaptive potential, as it is found almost everywhere in the world and in highly diverse climates. In a context of climate change, the variability of the honey bee's life-history traits as regards temperature and the environment shows that the species possesses such plasticity and genetic variability that this could give rise to the selection of development cycles suited to new environmental conditions. Although we do not know the precise impact of potential environmental changes on honey bees as a result of climate change, there is a large body of data at our disposal indicating that environmental changes have a direct influence on honey bee development. In this article, the authors examine the potential impact of climate change on honey bee behaviour, physiology and distribution, as well as on the evolution of the honey bee's interaction with diseases. Conservation measures will be needed to prevent the loss of this rich genetic diversity of honey bees and to preserve ecotypes that are so valuable for world biodiversity.

  13. Chinese sacbrood virus infection in Asian honey bees (Apis cerana cerana) and host immune responses to the virus infection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chinese Sacbrood virus (CSBV) is a common honey bee virus that infects both the European honey bee (A. mellifera) and the Asian honey bee (A. cerana). However, CSBV has much more devastating effects on Asian honey bees than on European honey bees, posing a serious threat to the agricultural and nat...

  14. Phenolic constituents and antioxidant activity of geopropolis from two species of amazonian stingless bees

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Silva, Ellen Cristina Costa da; Muniz, Magno Perea; Nunomura, Rita de Cassia Saraiva, E-mail: ellensilva@yahoo.com.br [Departamento de Quimica, Instituto de Ciencias Exatas, Universidade Federal do Amazonas, Manaus, AM (Brazil); Nunomura, Sergio Massayoshi [Departamento de Produtos Naturais, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazonia, Manaus, AM (Brazil); Zilse, Gislene Almeida Carvalho [Departamento de Biodiversidade, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazonia, Manaus, AM (Brazil)

    2013-09-01

    We investigated the phenolic constituents and antioxidant activity of geopropolis from two species of stingless Amazonian bees, Melipona interrupta and Melipona seminigra. The chemical investigation of geopropolis from Melipona interrupta led to the isolation of 5,7,4'-trihydroxyflavonone, 3,5,6,7,4'-pentahydroxyflavonol, naringenine-4'-O-{beta}-D-glucopyranoside and myricetin-3-O-{beta}-D-glucopyranoside. Their structures were assigned based on spectroscopic analyses, including two-dimensional NMR techniques. Antioxidant activity of methanol and ethanol extracts of M. interrupta and M. seminigra were measured using the 1,2-diphenyl-2-picryl-hydrazyl (DPPH) free radical scavenging assay. This is also the first work reporting the chemical investigation of stingless bee species from the Amazonian region. (author)

  15. Phenolic constituents and antioxidant activity of geopropolis from two species of amazonian stingless bees

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Silva, Ellen Cristina Costa da; Muniz, Magno Perêa; Nunomura, Rita de Cássia Saraiva; Nunomura, Sergio Massayoshi; Zilse, Gislene Almeida Carvalho

    2013-01-01

    We investigated the phenolic constituents and antioxidant activity of geopropolis from two species of stingless Amazonian bees, Melipona interrupta and Melipona seminigra. The chemical investigation of geopropolis from Melipona interrupta led to the isolation of 5,7,4’-trihydroxyflavonone, 3,5,6,7,4’-pentahydroxyflavonol, naringenine-4’-O-β-D-glucopyranoside and myricetin-3-O-β-D-glucopyranoside. Their structures were assigned based on spectroscopic analyses, including two-dimensional NMR techniques. Antioxidant activity of methanol and ethanol extracts of M. interrupta and M. seminigra were measured using the 1,2-diphenyl-2-picryl-hydrazyl (DPPH) free radical scavenging assay. This is also the first work reporting the chemical investigation of stingless bee species from the Amazonian region. (author)

  16. Flavonoids and triterpenes from the nest of the stingless bee Trigona spinipes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Freitas, Marinalva O.; Ponte, Flavio A.F.; Lima, Mary Anne S.; Silveira, Edilberto R. [Universidade Federal do Ceara, Fortaleza, CE (Brazil). Dept. de Quimica Organica e Inorganica. Curso de Pos-Graduacao em Quimica Organica]. E-mail: edil@ufc.br

    2008-07-01

    In the Northeast of Brazil the stingless bee Trigona spinipes Fabricius injures the tree bark of cultivated Eucalyptus citriodora specimens in order to make them exudate. The chemical investigation of the ethanol extract of an entire nest of T. spinipes allowed the isolation of the cycloartane triterpene magniferolic acid and 3{beta}-hydroxy-24-methylenecicloartan-26-oic acid, besides the flavonoids 3'-methyl quercetin, sakuranetin, kaempferol 7-methyl ether, tricetin and aromadendrin 7-methyl ether as the main compounds. The isolation of sakuranetin, kaempferol 7-methyl ether, and aromadendrin 7-methyl ether from both Trigonas spinipes' nest and the exudate from Eucalyptus, may suggest this species as a botanical origin of the nest constituents of these stingless bee in the Northeast of Brazil. The structural characterization of the isolated compounds was accomplished by spectrometric means and comparison with the literature data. (author)

  17. Phenolic constituents and antioxidant activity of geopropolis from two species of amazonian stingless bees

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Silva, Ellen Cristina Costa da; Muniz, Magno Perea; Nunomura, Rita de Cassia Saraiva, E-mail: ellensilva@yahoo.com.br [Departamento de Quimica, Instituto de Ciencias Exatas, Universidade Federal do Amazonas, Manaus, AM (Brazil); Nunomura, Sergio Massayoshi [Departamento de Produtos Naturais, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazonia, Manaus, AM (Brazil); Zilse, Gislene Almeida Carvalho [Departamento de Biodiversidade, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazonia, Manaus, AM (Brazil)

    2013-09-01

    We investigated the phenolic constituents and antioxidant activity of geopropolis from two species of stingless Amazonian bees, Melipona interrupta and Melipona seminigra. The chemical investigation of geopropolis from Melipona interrupta led to the isolation of 5,7,4'-trihydroxyflavonone, 3,5,6,7,4'-pentahydroxyflavonol, naringenine-4'-O-{beta}-D-glucopyranoside and myricetin-3-O-{beta}-D-glucopyranoside. Their structures were assigned based on spectroscopic analyses, including two-dimensional NMR techniques. Antioxidant activity of methanol and ethanol extracts of M. interrupta and M. seminigra were measured using the 1,2-diphenyl-2-picryl-hydrazyl (DPPH) free radical scavenging assay. This is also the first work reporting the chemical investigation of stingless bee species from the Amazonian region. (author)

  18. Flavonoids and triterpenes from the nest of the stingless bee Trigona spinipes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Freitas, Marinalva O.; Ponte, Flavio A.F.; Lima, Mary Anne S.; Silveira, Edilberto R.

    2008-01-01

    In the Northeast of Brazil the stingless bee Trigona spinipes Fabricius injures the tree bark of cultivated Eucalyptus citriodora specimens in order to make them exudate. The chemical investigation of the ethanol extract of an entire nest of T. spinipes allowed the isolation of the cycloartane triterpene magniferolic acid and 3β-hydroxy-24-methylenecicloartan-26-oic acid, besides the flavonoids 3'-methyl quercetin, sakuranetin, kaempferol 7-methyl ether, tricetin and aromadendrin 7-methyl ether as the main compounds. The isolation of sakuranetin, kaempferol 7-methyl ether, and aromadendrin 7-methyl ether from both Trigonas spinipes' nest and the exudate from Eucalyptus, may suggest this species as a botanical origin of the nest constituents of these stingless bee in the Northeast of Brazil. The structural characterization of the isolated compounds was accomplished by spectrometric means and comparison with the literature data. (author)

  19. Honey bee: a consumer’s point of view

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zavodna Lucie Sara

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available This article concerns the way bee products are perceived by customers. It is mainly focused on honey, which is considered the main output product of beekeeping. Beekeeping is a very popular activity in the Czech Republic. Based on current data there are over 48 thousand people engaged in beekeeping in the Czech Republic. Hand in hand with the increasing number of beekeepers the popularity of bee products - especially honey - among Czech consumers is also growing. Recently, the consumption of honey in the Czech Republic has been slightly increasing. A big problem today is that honey sold in Czech supermarkets is frequently falsified. At the same time, it is increasingly popular to buy honey directly from beekeepers. The aim of this research was to describe the situation about the honey market in the Czech Republic, and also to examine the relationship between consumers on the one hand, and honey/beekeepers on the other. We have also considered customer's trust in organic honey and honey sold in supermarket chains. Results show that consumers view bee products as generally healthy and prefer to buy bee products from a beekeeper because of greater convenience as locally sourced honey is perceived to be of higher quality. The majority of consumers agree with paying a higher price for a product of higher quality. The article confirmed the hypothesis that most people think that bee products sold by a beekeeper are healthier than those bought at ordinary shops.

  20. Anticancer Effects of Geopropolis Produced by Stingless Bees on Canine Osteosarcoma Cells In Vitro

    OpenAIRE

    Cinegaglia, Naiara Costa; Bersano, Paulo Ricardo Oliveira; Ara?jo, Maria Jos? Abigail Mendes; B?falo, Michelle Cristiane; Sforcin, Jos? Maur?cio

    2013-01-01

    Geopropolis is produced by indigenous stingless bees from the resinous material of plants, adding soil or clay. Its biological properties have not been investigated, such as propolis, and herein its cytotoxic action on canine osteosarcoma (OSA) cells was evaluated. OSA is a primary bone neoplasm diagnosed in dogs being an excellent model in vivo to study human OSA. spOS-2 primary cultures were isolated from the tumor of a dog with osteosarcoma and incubated with geopropolis, 70% ethanol (geop...

  1. Characterization of microsatellite loci for the stingless bee Scaura latitarsis (Hymenoptera, Apidae, Meliponini

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flávio Francisco

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Seven microsatellite loci were isolated and characterized from a microsatellite enriched genomic library for the stingless bee Scaura latitarsis. Primers were tested in 12 individuals. The number of alleles per locus ranged from 3 to 6 (mean = 4.29 and observed heterozygosity ranged from 0.00 to 0.75 (mean = 0.40. Cross-species tests showed successful amplification for Scaura atlantica, Scaura longula, Scaura tenuis, Schwarzula timida, Schwarziana quadripunctata, Plebeia droryana, and Plebeia remota.

  2. Anticancer Activity of Indian Stingless Bee Propolis: An In Vitro Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Milind K. Choudhari

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Indian stingless bee propolis has a complex chemical nature and is reported to possess various medicinal properties. In the present study, anticancer activity of the ethanolic extract of propolis (EEP was explored by testing the cytotoxic and apoptotic effect in four different cancer cell lines, namely, MCF-7 (human breast cancer, HT-29 (human colon adenocarcinoma, Caco-2 (human epithelial colorectal adenocarcinoma, and B16F1 (murine melanoma, at different concentrations. Cytotoxicity was evaluated by MTT assay and Trypan blue dye exclusion assay. EEP at a concentration of 250 g/mL exhibited ≥50% mortality in all cell lines tested (i.e., IC50 value. EEP revealed a concentration and time dependent cytotoxic effect. Apoptosis was estimated by differential staining (ethidium bromide/acridine orange and TUNEL (deoxynucleotidyl transferase-dUTP nick end labeling assay. Light microscopy and atomic force microscopy demonstrated morphological features of apoptosis in all the cell lines after treatment with 250 g/mL EEP for 24 h. Thus, early onset of apoptosis is the reason for anticancer activity of Indian stingless bee propolis. Further, the antioxidant potential of Indian stingless bee propolis was demonstrated to substantiate its anticancer activity.

  3. Convergent evolution: floral guides, stingless bee nest entrances, and insectivorous pitchers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biesmeijer, Jacobus C.; Giurfa, Martin; Koedam, Dirk; Potts, Simon G.; Joel, Daniel M.; Dafni, Amots

    2005-09-01

    Several recent hypotheses, including sensory drive and sensory exploitation, suggest that receiver biases may drive selection of biological signals in the context of sexual selection. Here we suggest that a similar mechanism may have led to convergence of patterns in flowers, stingless bee nest entrances, and pitchers of insectivorous plants. A survey of these non-related visual stimuli shows that they share features such as stripes, dark centre, and peripheral dots. Next, we experimentally show that in stingless bees the close-up approach to a flower is guided by dark centre preference. Moreover, in the approach towards their nest entrance, they have a spontaneous preference for entrance patterns containing a dark centre and disrupted ornamentation. Together with existing empirical evidence on the honeybee's and other insects’ orientation to flowers, this suggests that the signal receivers of the natural patterns we examined, mainly Hymenoptera, have spontaneous preferences for radiating stripes, dark centres, and peripheral dots. These receiver biases may have evolved in other behavioural contexts in the ancestors of Hymenoptera, but our findings suggest that they have triggered the convergent evolution of visual stimuli in floral guides, stingless bee nest entrances, and insectivorous pitchers.

  4. Impacts of Austrian Climate Variability on Honey Bee Mortality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Switanek, Matt; Brodschneider, Robert; Crailsheim, Karl; Truhetz, Heimo

    2015-04-01

    Global food production, as it is today, is not possible without pollinators such as the honey bee. It is therefore alarming that honey bee populations across the world have seen increased mortality rates in the last few decades. The challenges facing the honey bee calls into question the future of our food supply. Beside various infectious diseases, Varroa destructor is one of the main culprits leading to increased rates of honey bee mortality. Varroa destructor is a parasitic mite which strongly depends on honey bee brood for reproduction and can wipe out entire colonies. However, climate variability may also importantly influence honey bee breeding cycles and bee mortality rates. Persistent weather events affects vegetation and hence foraging possibilities for honey bees. This study first defines critical statistical relationships between key climate indicators (e.g., precipitation and temperature) and bee mortality rates across Austria, using 6 consecutive years of data. Next, these leading indicators, as they vary in space and time, are used to build a statistical model to predict bee mortality rates and the respective number of colonies affected. Using leave-one-out cross validation, the model reduces the Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) by 21% with respect to predictions made with the mean mortality rate and the number of colonies. Furthermore, a Monte Carlo test is used to establish that the model's predictions are statistically significant at the 99.9% confidence level. These results highlight the influence of climate variables on honey bee populations, although variability in climate, by itself, cannot fully explain colony losses. This study was funded by the Austrian project 'Zukunft Biene'.

  5. Heritabilities and genetic correlations for honey yield, gentleness, calmness and swarming behaviour in Austrian honey bees

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brascamp, Evert; Willam, Alfons; Boigenzahn, Christian; Bijma, Piter; Veerkamp, Roel F.

    2016-01-01

    Heritabilities and genetic correlations were estimated for honey yield and behavioural traits in Austrian honey bees using data on nearly 15,000 colonies of the bee breeders association Biene Österreich collected between 1995 and 2014. The statistical models used distinguished between the genetic

  6. Honey bee nest thermoregulation: diversity promotes stability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Julia C; Myerscough, Mary R; Graham, Sonia; Oldroyd, Benjamin P

    2004-07-16

    A honey bee colony is characterized by high genetic diversity among its workers, generated by high levels of multiple mating by its queen. Few clear benefits of this genetic diversity are known. Here we show that brood nest temperatures in genetically diverse colonies (i.e., those sired by several males) tend to be more stable than in genetically uniform ones (i.e., those sired by one male). One reason this increased stability arises is because genetically determined diversity in workers' temperature response thresholds modulates the hive-ventilating behavior of individual workers, preventing excessive colony-level responses to temperature fluctuations.

  7. Stingless Bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Meliponini in Oriental Mountains Cementeries from Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guiomar Nates-Parra

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available In 11 cemeteries of Cundinamarca and Meta (Colombia departments we found 203 nests of stingless bees pertaining to 15 species. The majority of the found nests (61% belong to genus Nannotrigona Cokerell, 1922. Nannotrigona mellaria was the specie with the greater nests number and higher population; Trigona (Tetragonisca angustula was found in all cemeteries, but in a smaller percentage that N. mellaria (29% of the total. In the Tena (Cundinamarca cemetery was found the nest highest density (118 nest/ha, with a tombs occupation percentage of 13.9%. We discussed the importance of cemeteries as an alternative for wild bees nesting sites conservation in urban areas.

  8. The mitochondrial genome of the stingless bee Melipona bicolor (Hymenoptera, Apidae, Meliponini: sequence, gene organization and a unique tRNA translocation event conserved across the tribe Meliponini

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Silvestre

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available At present a complete mtDNA sequence has been reported for only two hymenopterans, the Old World honey bee, Apis mellifera and the sawfly Perga condei. Among the bee group, the tribe Meliponini (stingless bees has some distinction due to its Pantropical distribution, great number of species and large importance as main pollinators in several ecosystems, including the Brazilian rain forest. However few molecular studies have been conducted on this group of bees and few sequence data from mitochondrial genomes have been described. In this project, we PCR amplified and sequenced 78% of the mitochondrial genome of the stingless bee Melipona bicolor (Apidae, Meliponini. The sequenced region contains all of the 13 mitochondrial protein-coding genes, 18 of 22 tRNA genes, and both rRNA genes (one of them was partially sequenced. We also report the genome organization (gene content and order, gene translation, genetic code, and other molecular features, such as base frequencies, codon usage, gene initiation and termination. We compare these characteristics of M. bicolor to those of the mitochondrial genome of A. mellifera and other insects. A highly biased A+T content is a typical characteristic of the A. mellifera mitochondrial genome and it was even more extreme in that of M. bicolor. Length and compositional differences between M. bicolor and A. mellifera genes were detected and the gene order was compared. Eleven tRNA gene translocations were observed between these two species. This latter finding was surprising, considering the taxonomic proximity of these two bee tribes. The tRNA Lys gene translocation was investigated within Meliponini and showed high conservation across the Pantropical range of the tribe.

  9. Saccharide breakdown and fermentation by the honey bee gut microbiome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Fredrick J; Rusch, Douglas B; Stewart, Frank J; Mattila, Heather R; Newton, Irene L G

    2015-03-01

    The honey bee, the world's most important agricultural pollinator, relies exclusively on plant-derived foods for nutrition. Nectar and pollen collected by honey bees are processed and matured within the nest through the activities of honey bee-derived microbes and enzymes. In order to better understand the contribution of the microbial community to food processing in the honey bee, we generated a metatranscriptome of the honey bee gut microbiome. The function of the microbial community in the honey bee, as revealed by metatranscriptome sequencing, resembles that of other animal guts and food-processing environments. We identified three major bacterial classes that are active in the gut (γ-Proteobacteria, Bacilli and Actinobacteria), all of which are predicted to participate in the breakdown of complex macromolecules (e.g. polysaccharides and polypeptides), the fermentation of component parts of these macromolecules, and the generation of various fermentation products, such as short-chain fatty acids and alcohol. The ability of the microbial community to metabolize these carbon-rich food sources was confirmed through the use of community-level physiological profiling. Collectively, these findings suggest that the gut microflora of the honey bee harbours bacterial members with unique roles, which ultimately can contribute to the processing of plant-derived food for colonies. © 2014 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Diet-dependent gene expression in honey bees: honey vs. sucrose or high fructose corn syrup.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wheeler, Marsha M; Robinson, Gene E

    2014-07-17

    Severe declines in honey bee populations have made it imperative to understand key factors impacting honey bee health. Of major concern is nutrition, as malnutrition in honey bees is associated with immune system impairment and increased pesticide susceptibility. Beekeepers often feed high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) or sucrose after harvesting honey or during periods of nectar dearth. We report that, relative to honey, chronic feeding of either of these two alternative carbohydrate sources elicited hundreds of differences in gene expression in the fat body, a peripheral nutrient-sensing tissue analogous to vertebrate liver and adipose tissues. These expression differences included genes involved in protein metabolism and oxidation-reduction, including some involved in tyrosine and phenylalanine metabolism. Differences between HFCS and sucrose diets were much more subtle and included a few genes involved in carbohydrate and lipid metabolism. Our results suggest that bees receive nutritional components from honey that are not provided by alternative food sources widely used in apiculture.

  11. Winter Survival of Individual Honey Bees and Honey Bee Colonies Depends on Level of Varroa destructor Infestation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dooremalen, van C.; Gerritsen, L.J.M.; Cornelissen, B.; Steen, van der J.J.M.; Langevelde, van F.; Blacquiere, T.

    2012-01-01

    Background: Recent elevated winter loss of honey bee colonies is a major concern. The presence of the mite Varroa destructor in colonies places an important pressure on bee health. V. destructor shortens the lifespan of individual bees, while long lifespan during winter is a primary requirement to

  12. REVIEW: The Diversity of Indigenous Honey Bee Species of Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SOESILAWATI HADISOESILO

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available It has been known that Indonesia has the most diverse honey bee species in the world. At least five out of nine species of honey bees are native to Indonesia namely Apis andreniformis, A. dorsata, A. cerana, A. koschevnikovi, and A. nigrocincta. One species, A. florea, although it was claimed to be a species native to Indonesia, it is still debatable whether it is really found in Indonesia or not. The new species, A. nuluensis, which is found in Sabah, Borneo is likely to be found in Kalimantan but it has not confirmed yet. This paper discusses briefly the differences among those native honey bees.

  13. Colour is more than hue: preferences for compiled colour traits in the stingless bees Melipona mondury and M. quadrifasciata.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koethe, Sebastian; Bossems, Jessica; Dyer, Adrian G; Lunau, Klaus

    2016-10-01

    The colour vision of bees has been extensively analysed in honeybees and bumblebees, but few studies consider the visual perception of stingless bees (Meliponini). In a five-stage experiment the preference for colour intensity and purity, and the preference for the dominant wavelength were tested by presenting four colour stimuli in each test to freely flying experienced workers of two stingless bee species, Melipona mondury and Melipona quadrifasciata. The results with bee-blue, bee-UV-blue and bee-green colours offered in four combinations of varying colour intensity and purity suggest a complex interaction between these colour traits for the determination of colour choice. Specifically, M. mondury preferred bee-UV-blue colours over bee-green, bee-blue and bee-blue-green colours while M. quadrifasciata preferred bee-green colour stimuli. Moreover in M. mondury the preferences were different if the background colour was changed from grey to green. There was a significant difference between species where M. mondury preferred UV-reflecting over UV-absorbing bee-blue-green colour stimuli, whereas M. quadrifasciata showed an opposite preference. The different colour preferences of the free flying bees in identical conditions may be caused by the bees' experience with natural flowers precedent to the choice tests, suggesting reward partitioning between species.

  14. Iridovirus and microsporidian linked to honey bee colony decline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bromenshenk, Jerry J; Henderson, Colin B; Wick, Charles H; Stanford, Michael F; Zulich, Alan W; Jabbour, Rabih E; Deshpande, Samir V; McCubbin, Patrick E; Seccomb, Robert A; Welch, Phillip M; Williams, Trevor; Firth, David R; Skowronski, Evan; Lehmann, Margaret M; Bilimoria, Shan L; Gress, Joanna; Wanner, Kevin W; Cramer, Robert A

    2010-10-06

    In 2010 Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), again devastated honey bee colonies in the USA, indicating that the problem is neither diminishing nor has it been resolved. Many CCD investigations, using sensitive genome-based methods, have found small RNA bee viruses and the microsporidia, Nosema apis and N. ceranae in healthy and collapsing colonies alike with no single pathogen firmly linked to honey bee losses. We used Mass spectrometry-based proteomics (MSP) to identify and quantify thousands of proteins from healthy and collapsing bee colonies. MSP revealed two unreported RNA viruses in North American honey bees, Varroa destructor-1 virus and Kakugo virus, and identified an invertebrate iridescent virus (IIV) (Iridoviridae) associated with CCD colonies. Prevalence of IIV significantly discriminated among strong, failing, and collapsed colonies. In addition, bees in failing colonies contained not only IIV, but also Nosema. Co-occurrence of these microbes consistently marked CCD in (1) bees from commercial apiaries sampled across the U.S. in 2006-2007, (2) bees sequentially sampled as the disorder progressed in an observation hive colony in 2008, and (3) bees from a recurrence of CCD in Florida in 2009. The pathogen pairing was not observed in samples from colonies with no history of CCD, namely bees from Australia and a large, non-migratory beekeeping business in Montana. Laboratory cage trials with a strain of IIV type 6 and Nosema ceranae confirmed that co-infection with these two pathogens was more lethal to bees than either pathogen alone. These findings implicate co-infection by IIV and Nosema with honey bee colony decline, giving credence to older research pointing to IIV, interacting with Nosema and mites, as probable cause of bee losses in the USA, Europe, and Asia. We next need to characterize the IIV and Nosema that we detected and develop management practices to reduce honey bee losses.

  15. Current knowledge of detoxification mechanisms of xenobiotic in honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Youhui; Diao, Qingyun

    2017-01-01

    The western honey bee Apis mellifera is the most important managed pollinator species in the world. Multiple factors have been implicated as potential causes or factors contributing to colony collapse disorder, including honey bee pathogens and nutritional deficiencies as well as exposure to pesticides. Honey bees' genome is characterized by a paucity of genes associated with detoxification, which makes them vulnerable to specific pesticides, especially to combinations of pesticides in real field environments. Many studies have investigated the mechanisms involved in detoxification of xenobiotics/pesticides in honey bees, from primal enzyme assays or toxicity bioassays to characterization of transcript gene expression and protein expression in response to xenobiotics/insecticides by using a global transcriptomic or proteomic approach, and even to functional characterizations. The global transcriptomic and proteomic approach allowed us to learn that detoxification mechanisms in honey bees involve multiple genes and pathways along with changes in energy metabolism and cellular stress response. P450 genes, is highly implicated in the direct detoxification of xenobiotics/insecticides in honey bees and their expression can be regulated by honey/pollen constitutes, resulting in the tolerance of honey bees to other xenobiotics or insecticides. P450s is also a key detoxification enzyme that mediate synergism interaction between acaricides/insecticides and fungicides through inhibition P450 activity by fungicides or competition for detoxification enzymes between acaricides. With the wide use of insecticides in agriculture, understanding the detoxification mechanism of insecticides in honey bees and how honeybees fight with the xenobiotis or insecticides to survive in the changing environment will finally benefit honeybees' management.

  16. Parasite pressures on feral honey bees (Apis mellifera sp..

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine E Thompson

    Full Text Available Feral honey bee populations have been reported to be in decline due to the spread of Varroa destructor, an ectoparasitic mite that when left uncontrolled leads to virus build-up and colony death. While pests and diseases are known causes of large-scale managed honey bee colony losses, no studies to date have considered the wider pathogen burden in feral colonies, primarily due to the difficulty in locating and sampling colonies, which often nest in inaccessible locations such as church spires and tree tops. In addition, little is known about the provenance of feral colonies and whether they represent a reservoir of Varroa tolerant material that could be used in apiculture. Samples of forager bees were collected from paired feral and managed honey bee colonies and screened for the presence of ten honey bee pathogens and pests using qPCR. Prevalence and quantity was similar between the two groups for the majority of pathogens, however feral honey bees contained a significantly higher level of deformed wing virus than managed honey bee colonies. An assessment of the honey bee race was completed for each colony using three measures of wing venation. There were no apparent differences in wing morphometry between feral and managed colonies, suggesting feral colonies could simply be escapees from the managed population. Interestingly, managed honey bee colonies not treated for Varroa showed similar, potentially lethal levels of deformed wing virus to that of feral colonies. The potential for such findings to explain the large fall in the feral population and the wider context of the importance of feral colonies as potential pathogen reservoirs is discussed.

  17. Parasite pressures on feral honey bees (Apis mellifera sp.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Catherine E; Biesmeijer, Jacobus C; Allnutt, Theodore R; Pietravalle, Stéphane; Budge, Giles E

    2014-01-01

    Feral honey bee populations have been reported to be in decline due to the spread of Varroa destructor, an ectoparasitic mite that when left uncontrolled leads to virus build-up and colony death. While pests and diseases are known causes of large-scale managed honey bee colony losses, no studies to date have considered the wider pathogen burden in feral colonies, primarily due to the difficulty in locating and sampling colonies, which often nest in inaccessible locations such as church spires and tree tops. In addition, little is known about the provenance of feral colonies and whether they represent a reservoir of Varroa tolerant material that could be used in apiculture. Samples of forager bees were collected from paired feral and managed honey bee colonies and screened for the presence of ten honey bee pathogens and pests using qPCR. Prevalence and quantity was similar between the two groups for the majority of pathogens, however feral honey bees contained a significantly higher level of deformed wing virus than managed honey bee colonies. An assessment of the honey bee race was completed for each colony using three measures of wing venation. There were no apparent differences in wing morphometry between feral and managed colonies, suggesting feral colonies could simply be escapees from the managed population. Interestingly, managed honey bee colonies not treated for Varroa showed similar, potentially lethal levels of deformed wing virus to that of feral colonies. The potential for such findings to explain the large fall in the feral population and the wider context of the importance of feral colonies as potential pathogen reservoirs is discussed.

  18. Honey bee (Apis mellifera) nurses do not consume pollens based on their nutritional quality

    OpenAIRE

    Corby-Harris, Vanessa; Snyder, Lucy; Meador, Charlotte; Ayotte, Trace

    2018-01-01

    Honey bee workers (Apis mellifera) consume a variety of pollens to meet the majority of their requirements for protein and lipids. Recent work indicates that honey bees prefer diets that reflect the proper ratio of nutrients necessary for optimal survival and homeostasis. This idea relies on the precept that honey bees evaluate the nutritional composition of the foods provided to them. While this has been shown in bumble bees, the data for honey bees are mixed. Further, there is controversy a...

  19. Phloroglucinols from anti-microbial deposit-resins of Australian stingless bees (Tetragonula carbonaria).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massaro, C Flavia; Smyth, Thomas J; Smyth, W Franklin; Heard, Tim; Leonhardt, Sara D; Katouli, Mohammad; Wallace, Helen M; Brooks, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Stingless bees accumulate deposits of plant resins that are mixed with beeswax to produce propolis. Previous studies have reported anti-microbial constituents of stingless bee (Tetragonula carbonaria) propolis from East Australia, but several components remained to be characterized. In the search of natural products yet unreported for Australian propolis, four bee deposit-resins of T. carbonaria bees were analysed by gas and liquid chromatography mass spectrometry with accurate mass measurements. Ethanolic extracts of the deposit-resins were tested in vitro against Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 25983 and Pseudomonas aeruginosa ATCC 27853 by the agar diffusion method. Phloroglucinols, flavonoids and isoprenoids were identified in samples. The crude extracts showed strong anti-staphylococcal effects but were less active against the Gram-negative bacterium. The diagnostic data enabled the identification of markers that can be used for profiling other Australian propolis sources and to target the isolation of bioactive phloroglucinols in future studies against antibiotic resistant S. aureus strains. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  20. Urbanization Increases Pathogen Pressure on Feral and Managed Honey Bees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elsa Youngsteadt

    Full Text Available Given the role of infectious disease in global pollinator decline, there is a need to understand factors that shape pathogen susceptibility and transmission in bees. Here we ask how urbanization affects the immune response and pathogen load of feral and managed colonies of honey bees (Apis mellifera Linnaeus, the predominant economically important pollinator worldwide. Using quantitative real-time PCR, we measured expression of 4 immune genes and relative abundance of 10 honey bee pathogens. We also measured worker survival in a laboratory bioassay. We found that pathogen pressure on honey bees increased with urbanization and management, and the probability of worker survival declined 3-fold along our urbanization gradient. The effect of management on pathogens appears to be mediated by immunity, with feral bees expressing immune genes at nearly twice the levels of managed bees following an immune challenge. The effect of urbanization, however, was not linked with immunity; instead, urbanization may favor viability and transmission of some disease agents. Feral colonies, with lower disease burdens and stronger immune responses, may illuminate ways to improve honey bee management. The previously unexamined effects of urbanization on honey-bee disease are concerning, suggesting that urban areas may favor problematic diseases of pollinators.

  1. Urbanization Increases Pathogen Pressure on Feral and Managed Honey Bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Youngsteadt, Elsa; Appler, R Holden; López-Uribe, Margarita M; Tarpy, David R; Frank, Steven D

    2015-01-01

    Given the role of infectious disease in global pollinator decline, there is a need to understand factors that shape pathogen susceptibility and transmission in bees. Here we ask how urbanization affects the immune response and pathogen load of feral and managed colonies of honey bees (Apis mellifera Linnaeus), the predominant economically important pollinator worldwide. Using quantitative real-time PCR, we measured expression of 4 immune genes and relative abundance of 10 honey bee pathogens. We also measured worker survival in a laboratory bioassay. We found that pathogen pressure on honey bees increased with urbanization and management, and the probability of worker survival declined 3-fold along our urbanization gradient. The effect of management on pathogens appears to be mediated by immunity, with feral bees expressing immune genes at nearly twice the levels of managed bees following an immune challenge. The effect of urbanization, however, was not linked with immunity; instead, urbanization may favor viability and transmission of some disease agents. Feral colonies, with lower disease burdens and stronger immune responses, may illuminate ways to improve honey bee management. The previously unexamined effects of urbanization on honey-bee disease are concerning, suggesting that urban areas may favor problematic diseases of pollinators.

  2. A time-compressed simulated geomagnetic storm influences the nest-exiting flight angles of the stingless bee Tetragonisca angustula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esquivel, D. M. S.; Corrêa, A. A. C.; Vaillant, O. S.; de Melo, V. Bandeira; Gouvêa, G. S.; Ferreira, C. G.; Ferreira, T. A.; Wajnberg, E.

    2014-03-01

    Insects have been used as models for understanding animal orientation. It is well accepted that social insects such as honeybees and ants use different natural cues in their orientation mechanism. A magnetic sensitivity was suggested for the stingless bee Schwarziana quadripunctata, based on the observation of a surprising effect of a geomagnetic storm on the nest-exiting flight angles. Stimulated by this result, in this paper, the effects of a time-compressed simulated geomagnetic storm (TC-SGS) on the nest-exiting flight angles of another stingless bee, Tetragonisca angustula, are presented. Under an applied SGS, either on the horizontal or vertical component of the geomagnetic field, both nest-exiting flight angles, dip and azimuth, are statistically different from those under geomagnetic conditions. The angular dependence of ferromagnetic resonance (FMR) spectra of whole stingless bees shows the presence of organized magnetic nanoparticles in their bodies, which indicates this material as a possible magnetic detector.

  3. Foraging task specialisation and foraging labour allocation in stingless bees

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hofstede, Frouke Elisabeth

    2006-01-01

    Social bees collect nectar and pollen from flowering plants for energy of the adult bees and for feeding the larvae in the colony. The flowering patterns of plants imply that periods of high food availability are often followed by periods of meagre foraging conditions. Being dependent on such a

  4. Challenges associated with the honey bee ( Apis Mellifera Adansonii )

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Challenges associated with the honey bee ( Apis Mellifera Adansonii ) colonies ... Diseases like American and European foulbrood were absent while ... African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development, Volume 13 No. 2 April ...

  5. Quality parameters of Bulgarian’s kinds of bee honey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dinko Hristov Dinkov

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available In Bulgaria were found more than 3600 kinds of higher plants, which predispose to production of different kinds of bee honey. In the country were registered 11 natural and 3 national parks, in which could found all kinds of plants, some of them unique in the world. Up to now there were harvested and investigated more than 11 kinds of bee honey. The aim of the present work was on the basis of available literature data to sum up the scientific information related to the main kinds of Bulgarian’s bee honeys from 2000 to present. In the study were presented quality parameters from organically produced and commercially processed bee honeys: pollen analysis, proline content, invertase activity, specific optical rotation, electrical conductivity, antioxidant and antibacterial activities.

  6. Is the Salivary Gland Associated with Honey Bee Recognition Compounds in Worker Honey Bees (Apis mellifera)?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Stephen J; Correia-Oliveira, Maria E; Shemilt, Sue; Drijfhout, Falko P

    2018-06-07

    Cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs) function as recognition compounds with the best evidence coming from social insects such as ants and honey bees. The major exocrine gland involved in hydrocarbon storage in ants is the post-pharyngeal gland (PPG) in the head. It is still not clearly understood where CHCs are stored in the honey bee. The aim of this study was to investigate the hydrocarbons and esters found in five major worker honey bee (Apis mellifera) exocrine glands, at three different developmental stages (newly emerged, nurse, and forager) using a high temperature GC analysis. We found the hypopharyngeal gland contained no hydrocarbons nor esters, and the thoracic salivary and mandibular glands only contained trace amounts of n-alkanes. However, the cephalic salivary gland (CSG) contained the greatest number and highest quantity of hydrocarbons relative to the five other glands with many of the hydrocarbons also found in the Dufour's gland, but at much lower levels. We discovered a series of oleic acid wax esters that lay beyond the detection of standard GC columns. As a bee's activities changed, as it ages, the types of compounds detected in the CSG also changed. For example, newly emerged bees have predominately C 19 -C 23 n-alkanes, alkenes and methyl-branched compounds, whereas the nurses' CSG had predominately C 31:1 and C 33:1 alkene isomers, which are replaced by a series of oleic acid wax esters in foragers. These changes in the CSG were mirrored by corresponding changes in the adults' CHCs profile. This indicates that the CSG may have a parallel function to the PPG found in ants acting as a major storage gland of CHCs. As the CSG duct opens into the buccal cavity the hydrocarbons can be worked into the comb wax and could help explain the role of comb wax in nestmate recognition experiments.

  7. Removal of clay by stingless bees: load size and moisture selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa-Pereira, Raul

    2014-09-01

    Some organisms disperse energy, associated with the transportation of resource, which is not necessarily food. Stingless bees of Central Amazonia (Melipona flavolineata and M. lateralis) collect clay in banks along streams for nest building. The moisture of the clay varies along the bank, and bees collect clay from specific location, indicating that there is some sort of preference regarding their selection. This study aims at identifying: if larger bees carry more clay; if there is a preference for moisture of substrates; and if bees are less efficient accumulating and transporting clay when it is wet. In order to do so, I measured the size of the bees and of the pellets of clay found in the corbicula. I set up a field experiment to test substrate preferences. The amount of clay transported, increased exponentially in accordance to the size of the bee, and the preferred substrate was the driest clay. The amount and the efficiency of removal of clay were not affected by the moisture of the substrate. Despite the wet clay being denser, it does not reduce the efficiency of exploitation of the resource, but suggests that bees spend more energy to carry the same quantity of wet clay, which may be the underlying mechanism explaining their preference for removing drier clay.

  8. Removal of clay by stingless bees: load size and moisture selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    RAUL COSTA-PEREIRA

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Some organisms disperse energy, associated with the transportation of resource, which is not necessarily food. Stingless bees of Central Amazonia (Melipona flavolineata and M. lateralis collect clay in banks along streams for nest building. The moisture of the clay varies along the bank, and bees collect clay from specific location, indicating that there is some sort of preference regarding their selection. This study aims at identifying: if larger bees carry more clay; if there is a preference for moisture of substrates; and if bees are less efficient accumulating and transporting clay when it is wet. In order to do so, I measured the size of the bees and of the pellets of clay found in the corbicula. I set up a field experiment to test substrate preferences. The amount of clay transported, increased exponentially in accordance to the size of the bee, and the preferred substrate was the driest clay. The amount and the efficiency of removal of clay were not affected by the moisture of the substrate. Despite the wet clay being denser, it does not reduce the efficiency of exploitation of the resource, but suggests that bees spend more energy to carry the same quantity of wet clay, which may be the underlying mechanism explaining their preference for removing drier clay.

  9. Taxonomic notes on stingless bee Trigona (Tetragonula iridipennis Smith (Hymenoptera: Apidae from India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Vijayakumar

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Stingless Bees are a large and diverse taxon and more than 500 species are recorded worldwide.  Based on the previous reports, totally seven species are reported from India.  The present study reports male and female morphological characteristics of Tetragonula iridipennis belonging to Tetragonula subgenus in Nellithurai Village, Tamil Nadu, India.  The species of Tetragonula group are extremely similar in the external morphology of the workers. The glabrous bands on mesoscutum of female bees and structure and arrangement of gonostylus and the penis valve of male bees are used to separate T. iridipennis from other species in this group.  The identity of T. iridipennis is made based on the male and female key morphological characteristics in the previous literature.

  10. Improving honey production in worker bees (Apis mellifera adansoni ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Modification of feeding activity, nursing care and undertaker behaviour were carried out among some colonies of honey bees Apis mellifera adansoni L to know the effect on honey production. Apiaries Numbers 1, 2 and 3 contain three replicates of experimental hives while apiary Number 4 contains control hives. All the ...

  11. Nosema ceranae escapes fumagillin control in honey bees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei-Fone Huang

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Fumagillin is the only antibiotic approved for control of nosema disease in honey bees and has been extensively used in United States apiculture for more than 50 years for control of Nosema apis. It is toxic to mammals and must be applied seasonally and with caution to avoid residues in honey. Fumagillin degrades or is diluted in hives over the foraging season, exposing bees and the microsporidia to declining concentrations of the drug. We showed that spore production by Nosema ceranae, an emerging microsporidian pathogen in honey bees, increased in response to declining fumagillin concentrations, up to 100% higher than that of infected bees that have not been exposed to fumagillin. N. apis spore production was also higher, although not significantly so. Fumagillin inhibits the enzyme methionine aminopeptidase2 (MetAP2 in eukaryotic cells and interferes with protein modifications necessary for normal cell function. We sequenced the MetAP2 gene for apid Nosema species and determined that, although susceptibility to fumagillin differs among species, there are no apparent differences in fumagillin binding sites. Protein assays of uninfected bees showed that fumagillin altered structural and metabolic proteins in honey bee midgut tissues at concentrations that do not suppress microsporidia reproduction. The microsporidia, particularly N. ceranae, are apparently released from the suppressive effects of fumagillin at concentrations that continue to impact honey bee physiology. The current application protocol for fumagillin may exacerbate N. ceranae infection rather than suppress it.

  12. Ecological adaptation of diverse honey bee (Apis mellifera populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Parker

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Honey bees are complex eusocial insects that provide a critical contribution to human agricultural food production. Their natural migration has selected for traits that increase fitness within geographical areas, but in parallel their domestication has selected for traits that enhance productivity and survival under local conditions. Elucidating the biochemical mechanisms of these local adaptive processes is a key goal of evolutionary biology. Proteomics provides tools unique among the major 'omics disciplines for identifying the mechanisms employed by an organism in adapting to environmental challenges. RESULTS: Through proteome profiling of adult honey bee midgut from geographically dispersed, domesticated populations combined with multiple parallel statistical treatments, the data presented here suggest some of the major cellular processes involved in adapting to different climates. These findings provide insight into the molecular underpinnings that may confer an advantage to honey bee populations. Significantly, the major energy-producing pathways of the mitochondria, the organelle most closely involved in heat production, were consistently higher in bees that had adapted to colder climates. In opposition, up-regulation of protein metabolism capacity, from biosynthesis to degradation, had been selected for in bees from warmer climates. CONCLUSIONS: Overall, our results present a proteomic interpretation of expression polymorphisms between honey bee ecotypes and provide insight into molecular aspects of local adaptation or selection with consequences for honey bee management and breeding. The implications of our findings extend beyond apiculture as they underscore the need to consider the interdependence of animal populations and their agro-ecological context.

  13. Ecological adaptation of diverse honey bee (Apis mellifera) populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Robert; Melathopoulos, Andony P; White, Rick; Pernal, Stephen F; Guarna, M Marta; Foster, Leonard J

    2010-06-15

    Honey bees are complex eusocial insects that provide a critical contribution to human agricultural food production. Their natural migration has selected for traits that increase fitness within geographical areas, but in parallel their domestication has selected for traits that enhance productivity and survival under local conditions. Elucidating the biochemical mechanisms of these local adaptive processes is a key goal of evolutionary biology. Proteomics provides tools unique among the major 'omics disciplines for identifying the mechanisms employed by an organism in adapting to environmental challenges. Through proteome profiling of adult honey bee midgut from geographically dispersed, domesticated populations combined with multiple parallel statistical treatments, the data presented here suggest some of the major cellular processes involved in adapting to different climates. These findings provide insight into the molecular underpinnings that may confer an advantage to honey bee populations. Significantly, the major energy-producing pathways of the mitochondria, the organelle most closely involved in heat production, were consistently higher in bees that had adapted to colder climates. In opposition, up-regulation of protein metabolism capacity, from biosynthesis to degradation, had been selected for in bees from warmer climates. Overall, our results present a proteomic interpretation of expression polymorphisms between honey bee ecotypes and provide insight into molecular aspects of local adaptation or selection with consequences for honey bee management and breeding. The implications of our findings extend beyond apiculture as they underscore the need to consider the interdependence of animal populations and their agro-ecological context.

  14. Analysis of lead concentration in forager stingless bees Trigona sp. (hymenoptera: Apidae) and propolis at Cilutung and Maribaya, West Java

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Safira, Nabila, E-mail: safira.nabila@ymail.com; Anggraeni, Tjandra, E-mail: tjandra@sith.itb.ac.id [School of Life Science and Technology, Institut Teknologi Bandung – Jalan Ganesha 10, Bandung (Indonesia)

    2015-09-30

    Several studies had shown that lead (Pb) in the environment could accumulate in bees, which in turn could affect the quality of the resulting product. In this study, forager stingless bees (Trigona sp.) and its product (propolis) collected from a stingless bees apiculture. This apiculture had two apiary sites which were distinguished by its environmental setting. Apiary site in Cilutung had a forest region environmental setting, while apiary site in Maribaya was located beside the main road. The objective of this study was to determine the extent of lead concentration in propolis originated from both apiary sites and establish the correlation between lead concentration in propolis and lead level in forager stingless bees. Forager bees and propolis samples were originated from 50 bees colonies (Cilutung) and 44 bees colonies (Maribaya). They were analyzed using AAS-GF (Atomic Absorption Spectrometre–Graphite Furnace) to determine the level of lead concentration. The results showed that the average level of lead in propolis originated from Cilutung (298.08±73.71 ppb) was lower than the average level of lead in forager bees which originated from Maribaya (330.64±156.34 ppb). However, these values did not show significant difference (p>0.05). There was no significant difference (p>0.05) between the average level of lead in forager bees which originated from Cilutung (118.08±30.46 ppb) and Maribaya (128.82±39.66 ppb). However, these values did not show significant difference (p>0.05). In conclusion, the average level of lead concentration in propolis in both sites had passed the maximum permission standard of lead for food in Indonesia. There was no correlation between lead concentration in propolis and forager stingless bees.

  15. Nutritional status influences socially regulated foraging ontogeny in honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toth, Amy L; Kantarovich, Sara; Meisel, Adam F; Robinson, Gene E

    2005-12-01

    In many social insects, including honey bees, worker energy reserve levels are correlated with task performance in the colony. Honey bee nest workers have abundant stored lipid and protein while foragers are depleted of these reserves; this depletion precedes the shift from nest work to foraging. The first objective of this study was to test the hypothesis that lipid depletion has a causal effect on the age at onset of foraging in honey bees (Apis mellifera L.). We found that bees treated with a fatty acid synthesis inhibitor (TOFA) were more likely to forage precociously. The second objective of this study was to determine whether there is a relationship between social interactions, nutritional state and behavioral maturation. Since older bees are known to inhibit the development of young bees into foragers, we asked whether this effect is mediated nutritionally via the passage of food from old to young bees. We found that bees reared in social isolation have low lipid stores, but social inhibition occurs in colonies in the field, whether young bees are starved or fed. These results indicate that although social interactions affect the nutritional status of young bees, social and nutritional factors act independently to influence age at onset of foraging. Our findings suggest that mechanisms linking internal nutritional physiology to foraging in solitary insects have been co-opted to regulate altruistic foraging in a social context.

  16. Sexual dimorphism and phenotypic plasticity in the antennal lobe of a stingless bee, Melipona scutellaris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roselino, Ana Carolina; Hrncir, Michael; da Cruz Landim, Carminda; Giurfa, Martin; Sandoz, Jean-Christophe

    2015-07-01

    Among social insects, the stingless bees (Apidae, Meliponini), a mainly tropical group of highly eusocial bees, present an intriguing variety of well-described olfactory-dependent behaviors showing both caste- and sex-specific adaptations. By contrast, little is known about the neural structures underlying such behavioral richness or the olfactory detection and processing abilities of this insect group. This study therefore aimed to provide the first detailed description and comparison of the brains and primary olfactory centers, the antennal lobes, of the different members of a colony of the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris. Global neutral red staining, confocal laser scanning microscopy, and 3D reconstructions were used to compare the brain structures of males, workers, and virgin queens with a special emphasis on the antennal lobe. We found significant differences between both sexes and castes with regard to the relative volumes of olfactory and visual neuropils in the brain and also in the number and volume of the olfactory glomeruli. In addition, we identified one (workers, queens) and three or four (males) macroglomeruli in the antennal lobe. In both sexes and all castes, the largest glomerulus (G1) was located at a similar position relative to four identified landmark glomeruli, close to the entrance of the antennal nerve. This similarity in position suggests that G1s of workers, virgin queens, and males of M. scutellaris may correspond to the same glomerular entity, possibly tuned to queen-emitted volatiles since all colony members need this information. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. Body size limits dim-light foraging activity in stingless bees (Apidae: Meliponini).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Streinzer, Martin; Huber, Werner; Spaethe, Johannes

    2016-10-01

    Stingless bees constitute a species-rich tribe of tropical and subtropical eusocial Apidae that act as important pollinators for flowering plants. Many foraging tasks rely on vision, e.g. spatial orientation and detection of food sources and nest entrances. Meliponini workers are usually small, which sets limits on eye morphology and thus quality of vision. Limitations are expected both on acuity, and thus on the ability to detect objects from a distance, as well as on sensitivity, and thus on the foraging time window at dusk and dawn. In this study, we determined light intensity thresholds for flight under dim light conditions in eight stingless bee species in relation to body size in a Neotropical lowland rainforest. Species varied in body size (0.8-1.7 mm thorax-width), and we found a strong negative correlation with light intensity thresholds (0.1-79 lx). Further, we measured eye size, ocelli diameter, ommatidia number, and facet diameter. All parameters significantly correlated with body size. A disproportionately low light intensity threshold in the minute Trigonisca pipioli, together with a large eye parameter P eye suggests specific adaptations to circumvent the optical constraints imposed by the small body size. We discuss the implications of body size in bees on foraging behavior.

  18. Toxicity assessment of glyphosate on honey bee (Apis mellifera) spermatozoa

    Science.gov (United States)

    During 2016-2017, 33.2% of managed honey bee colonies in the U.S. were lost due to Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). Commonly used pesticides are among the suspected reasons for bee mortality. N-(phosphonomethyl)glycine (glyphosate) is a widely used herbicide in the U.S. and has previously been shown ...

  19. The basic concept of honey bee breeding programs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Uzunov, A.; Brascamp, Pim; Büchler, R.

    2017-01-01

    Selective honey bee breeding is a phenomenon that fascinates beekeepers around the world. They often regard it as one of the most enigmatic and complex aspects of beekeeping. Indeed, according to our experiences participating in many international projects, both beekeepers and bee experts without a

  20. Interactions between Cooccurring Lactic Acid Bacteria in Honey Bee Hives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rokop, Z P; Horton, M A; Newton, I L G

    2015-10-01

    In contrast to the honey bee gut, which is colonized by a few characteristic bacterial clades, the hive of the honey bee is home to a diverse array of microbes, including many lactic acid bacteria (LAB). In this study, we used culture, combined with sequencing, to sample the LAB communities found across hive environments. Specifically, we sought to use network analysis to identify microbial hubs sharing nearly identical operational taxonomic units, evidence which may indicate cooccurrence of bacteria between environments. In the process, we identified interactions between noncore bacterial members (Fructobacillus and Lactobacillaceae) and honey bee-specific "core" members. Both Fructobacillus and Lactobacillaceae colonize brood cells, bee bread, and nectar and may serve the role of pioneering species, establishing an environment conducive to the inoculation by honey bee core bacteria. Coculture assays showed that these noncore bacterial members promote the growth of honey bee-specific bacterial species. Specifically, Fructobacillus by-products in spent medium supported the growth of the Firm-5 honey bee-specific clade in vitro. Metabolic characterization of Fructobacillus using carbohydrate utilization assays revealed that this strain is capable of utilizing the simple sugars fructose and glucose, as well as the complex plant carbohydrate lignin. We tested Fructobacillus for antibiotic sensitivity and found that this bacterium, which may be important for establishment of the microbiome, is sensitive to the commonly used antibiotic tetracycline. Our results point to the possible significance of "noncore" and environmental microbial community members in the modulation of honey bee microbiome dynamics and suggest that tetracycline use by beekeepers should be limited. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  1. The habitat disruption induces immune-suppression and oxidative stress in honey bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morimoto, Tomomi; Kojima, Yuriko; Toki, Taku; Komeda, Yayoi; Yoshiyama, Mikio; Kimura, Kiyoshi; Nirasawa, Keijiro; Kadowaki, Tatsuhiko

    2011-01-01

    The honey bee is a major insect used for pollination of many commercial crops worldwide. Although the use of honey bees for pollination can disrupt the habitat, the effects on their physiology have never been determined. Recently, honey bee colonies have often collapsed when introduced in greenhouses for pollination in Japan. Thus, suppressing colony collapses and maintaining the number of worker bees in the colonies is essential for successful long-term pollination in greenhouses and recycling of honey bee colonies. To understand the physiological states of honey bees used for long-term pollination in greenhouses, we characterized their gene expression profiles by microarray. We found that the greenhouse environment changes the gene expression profiles and induces immune-suppression and oxidative stress in honey bees. In fact, the increase of the number of Nosema microsporidia and protein carbonyl content was observed in honey bees during pollination in greenhouses. Thus, honey bee colonies are likely to collapse during pollination in greenhouses when heavily infested with pathogens. Degradation of honey bee habitat by changing the outside environment of the colony, during pollination services for example, imposes negative impacts on honey bees. Thus, worldwide use of honey bees for crop pollination in general could be one of reasons for the decline of managed honey bee colonies. PMID:22393496

  2. Alelle number and heterozigosity for microsatellite loci in different stingless bee species (Hymenoptera: Apidae, Meliponini).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Francisco, Flávio de O; Brito, Rute M; Arias, Maria C

    2006-01-01

    In the present study we compare genetic characteristics (allele diversity and observed heterozygosity) of microsatellite loci, from three stingless bee species (Plebeia remota Holmberg, Partamona mulata Moure In Camargo and Partamona helleri Friese), amplified by using heterospecific primers originally designed for Melipona bicolor Lepeletier and Scaptotrigona postica Latreille. We analyzed 360 individuals of P. remota from 72 nests, 58 individuals of R. mulata from 58 nests, and 47 individuals of P. helleri from 47 nests. The three species studied showed low level of polymorphism for the loci amplified with primers derived from M. bicolor. However, for the loci amplified with primers derived from S. postica, only P. remota presented low level of polymorphism.

  3. Electroantennography in the study of two stingless bee species (Hymenoptera: meliponini

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. F. L. R. A. Patricio

    Full Text Available The first recorded electroantennographic preliminary studies on stingless bees have been performed using two species of Frieseomelitta from Brazil. Experiments with F. silvestrii and F. varia showed that antennae respond to hexane extracts of heads and abdomens of both species and posterior tibia of F. silvestrii (which carry plant resin, as well as to the pure compounds 2-heptanol and 2-nonanol, which occur in the mandibular glands of both species, and to the terpenes alpha-cubebene, humulene, and beta-caryophyllene found on their tibia and in the cerumen of their nests.

  4. Radioactive contamination of honey and other bee-keeping products

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frantsevich, L.I.; Komissar, A.D.; Levchenko, I.A.

    1990-01-01

    Great amount of dust is collected in propolis under emergency atmospheric fallouts. Specific coefficient of the product migration amounts to several m 2 per 1 kg. Propolis is a good biological indicator of radioactive fallouts. The propolis collection is inadmissible after radioactive fallouts. Cocoon residuals obtained during bees-wax separation contain many radionuclides and should be disposed in special places. Nuclides are absent in bees-wax. Nuclides accumulated absent in a bee organism migrate into honey and queen milk, the honey is contaminated mainly via biogenic path

  5. Norwegian honey bees surviving Varroa destructor mite infestations by means of natural selection

    OpenAIRE

    Oddie, Melissa AY; Dahle, Bjørn Steinar; Neumann, Peter

    2017-01-01

    Background Managed, feral and wild populations of European honey bee subspecies, Apis mellifera, are currently facing severe colony losses globally. There is consensus that the ectoparasitic mite Varroa destructor, that switched hosts from the Eastern honey bee Apis cerana to the Western honey bee A. mellifera, is a key factor driving these losses. For >20 years, breeding efforts have not produced European honey bee colonies that can survive infestations without the need for mite control....

  6. Range and Frequency of Africanized Honey Bees in California (USA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kono, Yoshiaki; Kohn, Joshua R.

    2015-01-01

    Africanized honey bees entered California in 1994 but few accounts of their northward expansion or their frequency relative to European honey bees have been published. We used mitochondrial markers and morphometric analyses to determine the prevalence of Africanized honeybees in San Diego County and their current northward progress in California west of the Sierra Nevada crest. The northernmost African mitotypes detected were approximately 40 km south of Sacramento in California’s central valley. In San Diego County, 65% of foraging honey bee workers carry African mitochondria and the estimated percentage of Africanized workers using morphological measurements is similar (61%). There was no correlation between mitotype and morphology in San Diego County suggesting Africanized bees result from bidirectional hybridization. Seventy percent of feral hives, but only 13% of managed hives, sampled in San Diego County carried the African mitotype indicating that a large fraction of foraging workers in both urban and rural San Diego County are feral. We also found a single nucleotide polymorphism at the DNA barcode locus COI that distinguishes European and African mitotypes. The utility of this marker was confirmed using 401 georeferenced honey bee sequences from the worldwide Barcode of Life Database. Future censuses can determine whether the current range of the Africanized form is stable, patterns of introgression at nuclear loci, and the environmental factors that may limit the northern range of the Africanized honey bee. PMID:26361047

  7. Genic control of honey bee dance language dialect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinderer, T E; Beaman, L D

    1995-10-01

    Behavioural genetic analysis of honey bee dance language shows simple Mendelian genic control over certain dance dialect differences. Worker honey bees of one parent colony (yellow) changed from round to transition dances for foraging distances of 20 m and from transition to waggle dances at 40 m. Worker bees of the other parent colony (black) made these shifts at 30 m and 90 m, respectively. F1 colonies behaved identically to their yellow parent, suggesting dominance. Progeny of backcrossing between the F1 generation and the putative recessive black parent assorted to four classes, indicating that the dialect differences studied are regulated by genes at two unlinked loci, each having two alleles. Honey bee dance communication is complex and highly integrated behaviour. Nonetheless, analysis of a small element of this behaviour, variation in response to distance, suggests that dance communication is regulated by subsets consisting of simple genic systems.

  8. No apparent correlation between honey bee forager gut microbiota and honey production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horton, Melissa A; Oliver, Randy; Newton, Irene L

    2015-01-01

    One of the best indicators of colony health for the European honey bee (Apis mellifera) is its performance in the production of honey. Recent research into the microbial communities naturally populating the bee gut raise the question as to whether there is a correlation between microbial community structure and colony productivity. In this work, we used 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing to explore the microbial composition associated with forager bees from honey bee colonies producing large amounts of surplus honey (productive) and compared them to colonies producing less (unproductive). As supported by previous work, the honey bee microbiome was found to be dominated by three major phyla: the Proteobacteria, Bacilli and Actinobacteria, within which we found a total of 23 different bacterial genera, including known "core" honey bee microbiome members. Using discriminant function analysis and correlation-based network analysis, we identified highly abundant members (such as Frischella and Gilliamella) as important in shaping the bacterial community; libraries from colonies with high quantities of these Orbaceae members were also likely to contain fewer Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus species (such as Firm-4). However, co-culture assays, using isolates from these major clades, were unable to confirm any antagonistic interaction between Gilliamella and honey bee gut bacteria. Our results suggest that honey bee colony productivity is associated with increased bacterial diversity, although this mechanism behind this correlation has yet to be determined. Our results also suggest researchers should not base inferences of bacterial interactions solely on correlations found using sequencing. Instead, we suggest that depth of sequencing and library size can dramatically influence statistically significant results from sequence analysis of amplicons and should be cautiously interpreted.

  9. Use of Bee Honey as Alternative Medicine in Protein Energy Deficiency

    OpenAIRE

    Prasetyo, R. Heru; Sandhika, Willy; Susanto, Djoni

    2013-01-01

    The protein energy deficiency cause intestinal villus atrophy and epithel mucous damage. The effect of bee honey on histostructure of intestine was studied in the experimental mice as model of proteinenergy deficiency. The use bee honey in protein-energy deficiency shown to improve intestinal villus atrophy and epithel damage. In conclusion that bee honey can use as alternative medicine in protein energydeficiency

  10. BEE VENOM TRAP DESIGN OF APIS MELLIFERA L. AND APIS CERANA F. HONEY BEES

    OpenAIRE

    Budiaman

    2015-01-01

    The nectar and pollen of flowers which are abundance have not been taken into account for any purpose in forest, agriculture and plantation area. Honey bees such as Apis mellifera L. and Apis cerana F. had known as biological pollinators which could converted the flower components to be high economy products in the forms of honey, royal jelly, propolis, bee wax and bee venom. Among the products, bee venom has the best selling value, but the method of it???s optimal production has not been ext...

  11. Winter Survival of Individual Honey Bees and Honey Bee Colonies Depends on Level of Varroa destructor Infestation

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Dooremalen, Coby; Gerritsen, Lonne; Cornelissen, Bram; van der Steen, Jozef J. M.; van Langevelde, Frank; Blacquière, Tjeerd

    2012-01-01

    Background Recent elevated winter loss of honey bee colonies is a major concern. The presence of the mite Varroa destructor in colonies places an important pressure on bee health. V. destructor shortens the lifespan of individual bees, while long lifespan during winter is a primary requirement to survive until the next spring. We investigated in two subsequent years the effects of different levels of V. destructor infestation during the transition from short-lived summer bees to long-lived winter bees on the lifespan of individual bees and the survival of bee colonies during winter. Colonies treated earlier in the season to reduce V. destructor infestation during the development of winter bees were expected to have longer bee lifespan and higher colony survival after winter. Methodology/Principal Findings Mite infestation was reduced using acaricide treatments during different months (July, August, September, or not treated). We found that the number of capped brood cells decreased drastically between August and November, while at the same time, the lifespan of the bees (marked cohorts) increased indicating the transition to winter bees. Low V. destructor infestation levels before and during the transition to winter bees resulted in an increase in lifespan of bees and higher colony survival compared to colonies that were not treated and that had higher infestation levels. A variety of stress-related factors could have contributed to the variation in longevity and winter survival that we found between years. Conclusions/Significance This study contributes to theory about the multiple causes for the recent elevated colony losses in honey bees. Our study shows the correlation between long lifespan of winter bees and colony loss in spring. Moreover, we show that colonies treated earlier in the season had reduced V. destructor infestation during the development of winter bees resulting in longer bee lifespan and higher colony survival after winter. PMID:22558421

  12. Territorial biodiversity and consequences on physico-chemical characteristics of pollen collected by honey bee colonies

    OpenAIRE

    Odoux, Jean Francois; Feuillet, Dalila; Aupinel, Pierrick; Loublier, Yves; Tasei, Jean Noel; Mateescu, Cristina

    2012-01-01

    International audience; Pollen resources may become a constraint for the honey bee in cereal farming agrosystems and thus influence honey bee colony development. This survey intended to increase knowledge on bee ecology in order to understand how farming systems can provide bee forage throughout the year. We conducted a 1-year study to investigate the flower range exploited in an agrarian environment in western France, the physico-chemical composition of honey bee-collected pollen, the territ...

  13. Recruits of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona pectoralis learn food odors from the nest atmosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reichle, Christian; Jarau, Stefan; Aguilar, Ingrid; Ayasse, Manfred

    2010-05-01

    The ability to learn food odors inside the nest and to associate them with food sources in the field is of essential importance for the recruitment of nestmates in social bees. We investigated odor learning by workers within the hive and the influence of these odors on their food choice in the field in the stingless bee Scaptotrigona pectoralis. During the experiments, recruited bees had to choose between two feeders, one with an odor that was present inside the nest during the recruitment process, and one with an unknown odor. In all experiments with different odor combinations (linalool/phenylacetaldehyde, geraniol/eugenol) a significant majority of bees visited the feeder with the odor they had experienced in their nest ( χ 2-tests; p bees showed no preference for one of two feeders when they were either baited with the same odor (linalool) or contained no odor. Our results clearly show that naïve workers of S. pectoralis can learn the odor of a food source during the recruitment process from the nest atmosphere and that their subsequent food search in the field is influenced by the learned odor.

  14. The reduced-risk insecticide azadirachtin poses a toxicological hazard to stingless bee Partamona helleri (Friese, 1900) queens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernardes, Rodrigo Cupertino; Barbosa, Wagner Faria; Martins, Gustavo Ferreira; Lima, Maria Augusta Pereira

    2018-06-01

    Large-scale pesticide application poses a major threat to bee biodiversity by causing a decline in bee populations that, in turn, compromises ecosystem maintenance and agricultural productivity. Biopesticides are considered an alternative to synthetic pesticides with a focus on reducing potential detrimental effects to beneficial organisms such as bees. The production of healthy queen stingless bees is essential for the survival and reproduction of hives, although it remains unknown whether biopesticides influence stingless bee reproduction. In the present study, we investigated the effects of the biopesticide azadirachtin on the survival, behavior, morphology, development, and reproduction of queens of the stingless bee Partamona helleri (Friese, 1900). The neonicotinoid imidacloprid was used as a toxic reference standard. Queens were orally exposed in vitro to a contaminated diet (containing azadirachtin and imidacloprid) during development. Azadirachtin resulted in reduced survival, similarly to imidacloprid, altered development time, caused deformations, and reduced the size of the queens' reproductive organs. All of these factors could potentially compromise colony survival. Results from the present study showed azadirachtin posed a toxicological hazard to P. helleri queens. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Parasite infection accelerates age polyethism in young honey bees

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lecocq, Antoine; Jensen, Annette Bruun; Kryger, Per

    2016-01-01

    micro-colonies of honey bees and video analyses to track the effects of N. ceranae infection and exposure on a range of individual and social behaviours in young adult bees. We provide detailed data showing that N. ceranae infection significantly accelerated the age polyethism of young bees, causing......Honey bees (Apis mellifera) are important pollinators and their health is threatened worldwide by persistent exposure to a wide range of factors including pesticides, poor nutrition, and pathogens. Nosema ceranae is a ubiquitous microsporidian associated with high colony mortality. We used lab...... manipulation to increase colony infection. However, reduction in queen contacts could help bees limit the spread of infection. Such accelerated age polyethism may provide a form of behavioural immunity, particularly if it is elicited by a wide variety of pathogens....

  16. Stingless bees damage broccoli inflorescences when collecting fibers for nest building

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adriano Jorge Nunes dos Santos

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The stingless bee Trigona spinipes (Fabricius, 1793 (Hymenoptera: Apidae is an important pollinator for various crops, but constitutes an occasional pest of other plant species since it causes injury to leaves, stems, flowers and fruits while collecting nest materials. The aim of the present study was to determine the damage caused by T. spinipes to a broccoli (Brassica oleracea L. var. italica, Brassicaceae growing on an organic farm. A significant number of plants (72.5 % presented damaged inflorescences, while 39% of all of the inflorescences suffered some degree of injury. The activities of T. spinipes caused scarifications on the stems of the inflorescences, and these typically evolved to epidermal cicatrices up to 10 mm wide. In some cases, the lesions were sufficiently deep to cause partial destruction of the vascular tissues, and this lead to thinner (< 5 mm diameter floral stems that may collapse. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report concerning the attack of broccoli plants by T. spinipes. The results obtained should serve to highlight the possibility that stingless bees could be responsible for direct and/or indirect damage to vegetable crops, and to stimulate the development of control strategies for these incidental pests.

  17. Genetic structure of nest aggregations and drone congregations of the southeast Asian stingless bee Trigona collina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cameron, E C; Franck, P; Oldroyd, B P

    2004-08-01

    In stingless bees, sex is determined by a single complementary sex-determining locus. This method of sex determination imposes a severe cost of inbreeding because an egg fertilized by sperm carrying the same sex allele as the egg results in a sterile diploid male. To explore how reproductive strategies may be used to avoid inbreeding in stingless bees, we studied the genetic structure of a population of 27 colonies and three drone congregations of Trigona collina in Chanthaburi, Thailand. The colonies were distributed across six nest aggregations, each aggregation located in the base of a different fig tree. Genetic analysis at eight microsatellite loci showed that colonies within aggregations were not related. Samples taken from three drone congregations showed that the males were drawn from a large number of colonies (estimated to be 132 different colonies in our largest swarm). No drone had a genotype indicating that it could have originated from the colony that it was directly outside. Combined, these results suggest that movements of drones and possibly movements of reproductive swarms among colony aggregations provide two mechanisms of inbreeding avoidance. Copyright 2004 Blackwell Publishing Ltd

  18. ProtoBee: Hierarchical classification and annotation of the honey bee proteome

    OpenAIRE

    Kaplan, Noam; Linial, Michal

    2006-01-01

    The recently sequenced genome of the honey bee (Apis mellifera) has produced 10,157 predicted protein sequences, calling for a computational effort to extract biological insights from them. We have applied an unsupervised hierarchical protein-clustering method, which was previously used in the ProtoNet system, to nearly 200,000 proteins consisting of the predicted honey bee proteins, the SWISS-PROT protein database, and the complete set of proteins of the mouse (Mus musculus) and the fruit fl...

  19. Studies of learned helplessness in honey bees (Apis mellifera ligustica).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dinges, Christopher W; Varnon, Christopher A; Cota, Lisa D; Slykerman, Stephen; Abramson, Charles I

    2017-04-01

    The current study reports 2 experiments investigating learned helplessness in the honey bee (Apis mellifera ligustica). In Experiment 1, we used a traditional escape method but found the bees' activity levels too high to observe changes due to treatment conditions. The bees were not able to learn in this traditional escape procedure; thus, such procedures may be inappropriate to study learned helplessness in honey bees. In Experiment 2, we used an alternative punishment, or passive avoidance, method to investigate learned helplessness. Using a master and yoked design where bees were trained as either master or yoked and tested as either master or yoked, we found that prior training with unavoidable and inescapable shock in the yoked condition interfered with avoidance and escape behavior in the later master condition. Unlike control bees, learned helplessness bees failed to restrict their movement to the safe compartment following inescapable shock. Unlike learned helplessness studies in other animals, no decrease in general activity was observed. Furthermore, we did not observe a "freezing" response to inescapable aversive stimuli-a phenomenon, thus far, consistently observed in learned helplessness tests with other species. The bees, instead, continued to move back and forth between compartments despite punishment in the incorrect compartment. These findings suggest that, although traditional escape methods may not be suitable, honey bees display learned helplessness in passive avoidance procedures. Thus, regardless of behavioral differences from other species, honey bees can be a unique invertebrate model organism for the study of learned helplessness. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  20. Transcriptional responses in honey bee larvae infected with chalkbrood fungus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aronstein, Katherine A; Murray, Keith D; Saldivar, Eduardo

    2010-06-21

    Diseases and other stress factors working synergistically weaken honey bee health and may play a major role in the losses of bee populations in recent years. Among a large number of bee diseases, chalkbrood has been on the rise. We present here the experimental identification of honey bee genes that are differentially expressed in response to infection of honey bee larvae with the chalkbrood fungus, Ascosphaera apis. We used cDNA-AFLP Technology to profile transcripts in infected and uninfected bee larvae. From 64 primer combinations, over 7,400 transcriptionally-derived fragments were obtained A total of 98 reproducible polymorphic cDNA-AFLP fragments were excised and sequenced, followed by quantitative real-time RT-PCR (qRT-PCR) analysis of these and additional samples.We have identified a number of differentially-regulated transcripts that are implicated in general mechanisms of stress adaptation, including energy metabolism and protein transport. One of the most interesting differentially-regulated transcripts is for a chitinase-like enzyme that may be linked to anti-fungal activities in the honey bee larvae, similarly to gut and fat-body specific chitinases found in mosquitoes and the red flour beetle. Surprisingly, we did not find many components of the well-characterized NF-kappaB intracellular signaling pathways to be differentially-regulated using the cDNA-AFLP approach. Therefore, utilizing qRT-PCR, we probed some of the immune related genes to determine whether the lack of up-regulation of their transcripts in our analysis can be attributed to lack of immune activation or to limitations of the cDNA-AFLP approach. Using a combination of cDNA-AFLP and qRT-PCR analyses, we were able to determine several key transcriptional events that constitute the overall effort in the honey bee larvae to fight natural fungal infection. Honey bee transcripts identified in this study are involved in critical functions related to transcriptional regulation, apoptotic

  1. Honey Bee Colonies Remote Monitoring System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Gil-Lebrero

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Bees are very important for terrestrial ecosystems and, above all, for the subsistence of many crops, due to their ability to pollinate flowers. Currently, the honey bee populations are decreasing due to colony collapse disorder (CCD. The reasons for CCD are not fully known, and as a result, it is essential to obtain all possible information on the environmental conditions surrounding the beehives. On the other hand, it is important to carry out such information gathering as non-intrusively as possible to avoid modifying the bees’ work conditions and to obtain more reliable data. We designed a wireless-sensor networks meet these requirements. We designed a remote monitoring system (called WBee based on a hierarchical three-level model formed by the wireless node, a local data server, and a cloud data server. WBee is a low-cost, fully scalable, easily deployable system with regard to the number and types of sensors and the number of hives and their geographical distribution. WBee saves the data in each of the levels if there are failures in communication. In addition, the nodes include a backup battery, which allows for further data acquisition and storage in the event of a power outage. Unlike other systems that monitor a single point of a hive, the system we present monitors and stores the temperature and relative humidity of the beehive in three different spots. Additionally, the hive is continuously weighed on a weighing scale. Real-time weight measurement is an innovation in wireless beehive—monitoring systems. We designed an adaptation board to facilitate the connection of the sensors to the node. Through the Internet, researchers and beekeepers can access the cloud data server to find out the condition of their hives in real time.

  2. Determinants of stingless bee nest density in lowland dipterocarp forests of Sabah, Malaysia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eltz, Thomas; Brühl, Carsten A; van der Kaars, Sander; Linsenmair, Eduard K

    2002-03-01

    We measured the nest density of stingless bees (Apidae, Meliponini) in undisturbed and logged-over dipterocarp forests in Sabah, northern Borneo, and evaluated hypotheses on proximate factors leading to the observed variation: population control mediated by (1) nest predation, (2) limitation of nest trees, or (3) food limitation. Per-area nest density varied twentyfold across 14 forest sites and was significantly affected by locality, but not by the degree and history of disturbance. Nest density was generally high in sites located in the Sepilok Forest fragment (mean 8.4 nests/ha), bordering mangroves or plantations. In contrast, nest densities in continuous forests were all low (between 0 and 2.1 nests/ha, mean 0.5 nests/ha). Yearly nest mortality was low (13.5-15.0%) over 4 years of observation and did not vary between forest localities, thus limiting the potential of nest predation (1) in creating the observed variation in nest density. The presence of potential nest trees (2), though positively correlated with nest density, explained only a minute fraction of the observed variation. Nest density was best explained by differences in the pollen resources (3) available to the bees (quantified by analysis of pollen in bee garbage). Across five selected sites the amount of nonforest pollen (from mangrove or crop plants) included in diets of Trigona collina was positively correlated with T. collina nest density. External pollen sources are a likely supplement to bee diets at times when little flowering occurs inside the forest, thus increasing overall bee carrying capacity. Pollen limitation was also indicated by direct measurements of pollen import and foraging activity of T. collina in three selected sites: Pollen traps installed at nests in high-density Sepilok captured significantly more corbicular pollen than colonies in low-density Deramakot. At the same time, morning foraging activity was also greater in Sepilok, indicating a regulatory increase in foraging

  3. Propolins and glyasperin A from stingless bee nests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Consolacion Y. Ragasa

    Full Text Available Abstract Chemical investigation of the dichloromethane extracts of the propolis collected from bee (Tetragonula biroi Friese hives in San Roque, Sorsogon, Philippines afforded propolin A (1, propolin E (2, propolin H (3, glyasperin A (4, squalene, a mixture of lupeol, α-amyrin and β-amyrin, and another mixture of urs-12-en-3-one, olean-12-en-3-one and lup-12-en-3-one. The structures of 2–4 were elucidated by extensive 1D and 2D (COSY, HSQC, and HMBC NMR spectroscopy, while 1 was identified by comparison of its NMR data with 2.

  4. Effects of Long Distance Transportation on Honey Bee Physiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kiheung Ahn

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Despite the requirement of long distance transportation of honey bees used for pollination, we understand little how transportation affects honey bees. Three trials in three different states (CA, GA, and MI were conducted to study the effects of long distance transportation on honey bee physiology. Newly emerged bees from one colony were split into two groups and introduced into a transported (T colony or a stationary (S colony in each trial. Volumes of hypopharyngeal gland acini in T colonies were significantly smaller than S colonies in all three trials. There were no significant differences between S and T colonies in juvenile hormone titers. Protein content in head showed no significant differences between S and T either in 7-day-old or 17-day-old bees of MI trial, but GA trial showed a significant reduction in bees experiencing transportation. Protein content in thorax was only measured in GA trial and was not significantly different between the two groups. Lipid content in abdomen was not significantly different between the S and T colonies in all three trials. This study suggests that bees experiencing transportation have trouble fully developing their food glands and this might affect their ability to nurse the next generation of workers.

  5. The honey bee parasite Nosema ceranae: transmissible via food exchange?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael L Smith

    Full Text Available Nosema ceranae, a newly introduced parasite of the honey bee, Apis mellifera, is contributing to worldwide colony losses. Other Nosema species, such as N. apis, tend to be associated with increased defecation and spread via a fecal-oral pathway, but because N. ceranae does not induce defecation, it may instead be spread via an oral-oral pathway. Cages that separated older infected bees from young uninfected bees were used to test whether N. ceranae can be spread during food exchange. When cages were separated by one screen, food could be passed between the older bees and the young bees, but when separated by two screens, food could not be passed between the two cages. Young uninfected bees were also kept isolated in cages, as a solitary control. After 4 days of exposure to the older bees, and 10 days to incubate infections, young bees were more likely to be infected in the 1-Screen Test treatment vs. the 2-Screen Test treatment (P=0.0097. Young bees fed by older bees showed a 13-fold increase in mean infection level relative to young bees not fed by older bees (1-Screen Test 40.8%; 2-Screen Test 3.4%; Solo Control 2.8%. Although fecal-oral transmission is still possible in this experimental design, oral-oral infectivity could help explain the rapid spread of N. ceranae worldwide.

  6. Effect of Australian propolis from stingless bees (Tetragonula carbonaria on pre-contracted human and porcine isolated arteries.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavia C Massaro

    Full Text Available Bee propolis is a mixture of plant resins and bee secretions. While bioactivity of honeybee propolis has been reported previously, information is limited on propolis from Australian stingless bees (Tetragonula carbonaria. The aim of this study was to investigate possible vasomodulatory effects of propolis in KCl-precontracted porcine coronary arteries using an ex vivo tissue bath assay. Polar extracts of propolis produced a dose-dependent relaxant response (EC50=44.7±7.0 μg/ml, which was unaffected by endothelial denudation, suggesting a direct effect on smooth muscle. Propolis markedly attenuated a contractile response to Ca(2+ in vessels that were depolarised with 60 mM KCl, in Ca(2+-free Krebs solution. Propolis (160 µg/ml reduced vascular tone in KCl pre-contracted vessels to near-baseline levels over 90 min, and this effect was partially reversible with 6 h washout. Some loss in membrane integrity, but no loss in mitochondrial function was detected after 90 min exposure of human cultured umbilical vein endothelial cells to 160 µg/ml propolis. We conclude that Australian stingless bee (T. carbonaria propolis relaxes porcine coronary artery in an endothelial-independent manner that involves inhibition of voltage-gated Ca(2+ channels. This effect is partially and slowly reversible upon washout. Further studies are required to determine the therapeutic potential of Australian stingless bee propolis for conditions in which vascular supply is compromised.

  7. Detection of Spiroplasma melliferum in honey bee colonies in the US.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Huo-Qing; Chen, Yan Ping

    2014-06-01

    Spiroplasma infections in honey bees have been reported in Europe and Asia quite recently, due to intensive studies on the epidemiology of honey bee diseases. The situation in the US is less well analyzed. Here, we examined the honey bee colonies in Beltsville, MD, where Spiroplasmamelliferum was originally reported and found S. melliferum infection in honey bees. Our data showed high variation of S. melliferum infection in honey bees with a peak prevalence in May during the course of one-year study period. The colony prevalence increased from 5% in February to 68% in May and then decreased to 25% in June and 22% in July. Despite that pathogenicity of spiroplasmas in honey bee colonies remains to be determined, our results indicated that spiroplasma infections need to be included for the consideration of the impacts on honey bee health. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  8. Learning impairment in honey bees caused by agricultural spray adjuvants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timothy J Ciarlo

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Spray adjuvants are often applied to crops in conjunction with agricultural pesticides in order to boost the efficacy of the active ingredient(s. The adjuvants themselves are largely assumed to be biologically inert and are therefore subject to minimal scrutiny and toxicological testing by regulatory agencies. Honey bees are exposed to a wide array of pesticides as they conduct normal foraging operations, meaning that they are likely exposed to spray adjuvants as well. It was previously unknown whether these agrochemicals have any deleterious effects on honey bee behavior. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: An improved, automated version of the proboscis extension reflex (PER assay with a high degree of trial-to-trial reproducibility was used to measure the olfactory learning ability of honey bees treated orally with sublethal doses of the most widely used spray adjuvants on almonds in the Central Valley of California. Three different adjuvant classes (nonionic surfactants, crop oil concentrates, and organosilicone surfactants were investigated in this study. Learning was impaired after ingestion of 20 µg organosilicone surfactant, indicating harmful effects on honey bees caused by agrochemicals previously believed to be innocuous. Organosilicones were more active than the nonionic adjuvants, while the crop oil concentrates were inactive. Ingestion was required for the tested adjuvant to have an effect on learning, as exposure via antennal contact only induced no level of impairment. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: A decrease in percent conditioned response after ingestion of organosilicone surfactants has been demonstrated here for the first time. Olfactory learning is important for foraging honey bees because it allows them to exploit the most productive floral resources in an area at any given time. Impairment of this learning ability may have serious implications for foraging efficiency at the colony level, as well as potentially many

  9. Learning context modulates aversive taste strength in honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Brito Sanchez, Maria Gabriela; Serre, Marion; Avarguès-Weber, Aurore; Dyer, Adrian G; Giurfa, Martin

    2015-03-01

    The capacity of honey bees (Apis mellifera) to detect bitter substances is controversial because they ingest without reluctance different kinds of bitter solutions in the laboratory, whereas free-flying bees avoid them in visual discrimination tasks. Here, we asked whether the gustatory perception of bees changes with the behavioral context so that tastes that are less effective as negative reinforcements in a given context become more effective in a different context. We trained bees to discriminate an odorant paired with 1 mol l(-1) sucrose solution from another odorant paired with either distilled water, 3 mol l(-1) NaCl or 60 mmol l(-1) quinine. Training was either Pavlovian [olfactory conditioning of the proboscis extension reflex (PER) in harnessed bees], or mainly operant (olfactory conditioning of free-walking bees in a Y-maze). PER-trained and maze-trained bees were subsequently tested both in their original context and in the alternative context. Whereas PER-trained bees transferred their choice to the Y-maze situation, Y-maze-trained bees did not respond with a PER to odors when subsequently harnessed. In both conditioning protocols, NaCl and distilled water were the strongest and the weakest aversive reinforcement, respectively. A significant variation was found for quinine, which had an intermediate aversive effect in PER conditioning but a more powerful effect in the Y-maze, similar to that of NaCl. These results thus show that the aversive strength of quinine varies with the learning context, and reveal the plasticity of the bee's gustatory system. We discuss the experimental constraints of both learning contexts and focus on stress as a key modulator of taste in the honey bee. Further explorations of bee taste are proposed to understand the physiology of taste modulation in bees. © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  10. Varroa-Virus Interaction in Collapsing Honey Bee Colonies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Francis, Roy Mathew; Nielsen, Steen L.; Kryger, Per

    2013-01-01

    Varroa mites and viruses are the currently the high-profile suspects in collapsing bee colonies. Therefore, seasonal variation in varroa load and viruses (Acute-Kashmir-Israeli complex (AKI) and Deformed Wing Virus (DWV)) were monitored in a year-long study. We investigated the viral titres...... in honey bees and varroa mites from 23 colonies (15 apiaries) under three treatment conditions: Organic acids (11 colonies), pyrethroid (9 colonies) and untreated (3 colonies). Approximately 200 bees were sampled every month from April 2011 to October 2011, and April 2012. The 200 bees were split to 10...... subsamples of 20 bees and analysed separately, which allows us to determine the prevalence of virus-infected bees. The treatment efficacy was often low for both treatments. In colonies where varroa treatment reduced the mite load, colonies overwintered successfully, allowing the mites and viruses...

  11. Proteomic analyses of male contributions to honey bee sperm storage and mating

    OpenAIRE

    Collins, A M; Caperna, T J; Williams, V; Garrett, W M; Evans, J D

    2006-01-01

    Honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) queens mate early in life and store sperm for years. Male bees likely contribute significantly to sperm survival. Proteins were extracted from seminal vesicles and semen of mature drones, separated by electrophoresis, and analysed by peptide mass fingerprinting. Computer searches against three databases, general species, honey bees and fruit flies, were performed. Spectra were used to query the recently generated honey bee genome protein list as well as general s...

  12. The habitat disruption induces immune-suppression and oxidative stress in honey bees

    OpenAIRE

    Morimoto, Tomomi; Kojima, Yuriko; Toki, Taku; Komeda, Yayoi; Yoshiyama, Mikio; Kimura, Kiyoshi; Nirasawa, Keijiro; Kadowaki, Tatsuhiko

    2011-01-01

    The honey bee is a major insect used for pollination of many commercial crops worldwide. Although the use of honey bees for pollination can disrupt the habitat, the effects on their physiology have never been determined. Recently, honey bee colonies have often collapsed when introduced in greenhouses for pollination in Japan. Thus, suppressing colony collapses and maintaining the number of worker bees in the colonies is essential for successful long-term pollination in greenhouses and recycli...

  13. Parasite infection accelerates age polyethism in young honey bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lecocq, Antoine; Jensen, Annette Bruun; Kryger, Per; Nieh, James C.

    2016-01-01

    Honey bees (Apis mellifera) are important pollinators and their health is threatened worldwide by persistent exposure to a wide range of factors including pesticides, poor nutrition, and pathogens. Nosema ceranae is a ubiquitous microsporidian associated with high colony mortality. We used lab micro-colonies of honey bees and video analyses to track the effects of N. ceranae infection and exposure on a range of individual and social behaviours in young adult bees. We provide detailed data showing that N. ceranae infection significantly accelerated the age polyethism of young bees, causing them to exhibit behaviours typical of older bees. Bees with high N. ceranae spore counts had significantly increased walking rates and decreased attraction to queen mandibular pheromone. Infected bees also exhibited higher rates of trophallaxis (food exchange), potentially reflecting parasite manipulation to increase colony infection. However, reduction in queen contacts could help bees limit the spread of infection. Such accelerated age polyethism may provide a form of behavioural immunity, particularly if it is elicited by a wide variety of pathogens. PMID:26912310

  14. Parasite infection accelerates age polyethism in young honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lecocq, Antoine; Jensen, Annette Bruun; Kryger, Per; Nieh, James C

    2016-02-25

    Honey bees (Apis mellifera) are important pollinators and their health is threatened worldwide by persistent exposure to a wide range of factors including pesticides, poor nutrition, and pathogens. Nosema ceranae is a ubiquitous microsporidian associated with high colony mortality. We used lab micro-colonies of honey bees and video analyses to track the effects of N. ceranae infection and exposure on a range of individual and social behaviours in young adult bees. We provide detailed data showing that N. ceranae infection significantly accelerated the age polyethism of young bees, causing them to exhibit behaviours typical of older bees. Bees with high N. ceranae spore counts had significantly increased walking rates and decreased attraction to queen mandibular pheromone. Infected bees also exhibited higher rates of trophallaxis (food exchange), potentially reflecting parasite manipulation to increase colony infection. However, reduction in queen contacts could help bees limit the spread of infection. Such accelerated age polyethism may provide a form of behavioural immunity, particularly if it is elicited by a wide variety of pathogens.

  15. Honey constituents up-regulate detoxification and immunity genes in the western honey bee Apis mellifera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, Wenfu; Schuler, Mary A; Berenbaum, May R

    2013-05-28

    As a managed pollinator, the honey bee Apis mellifera is critical to the American agricultural enterprise. Recent colony losses have thus raised concerns; possible explanations for bee decline include nutritional deficiencies and exposures to pesticides and pathogens. We determined that constituents found in honey, including p-coumaric acid, pinocembrin, and pinobanksin 5-methyl ether, specifically induce detoxification genes. These inducers are primarily found not in nectar but in pollen in the case of p-coumaric acid (a monomer of sporopollenin, the principal constituent of pollen cell walls) and propolis, a resinous material gathered and processed by bees to line wax cells. RNA-seq analysis (massively parallel RNA sequencing) revealed that p-coumaric acid specifically up-regulates all classes of detoxification genes as well as select antimicrobial peptide genes. This up-regulation has functional significance in that that adding p-coumaric acid to a diet of sucrose increases midgut metabolism of coumaphos, a widely used in-hive acaricide, by ∼60%. As a major component of pollen grains, p-coumaric acid is ubiquitous in the natural diet of honey bees and may function as a nutraceutical regulating immune and detoxification processes. The widespread apicultural use of honey substitutes, including high-fructose corn syrup, may thus compromise the ability of honey bees to cope with pesticides and pathogens and contribute to colony losses.

  16. APIS-a novel approach for conditioning honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirkerud, Nicholas H; Wehmann, Henja-Niniane; Galizia, C Giovanni; Gustav, David

    2013-01-01

    Honey bees perform robustly in different conditioning paradigms. This makes them excellent candidates for studying mechanisms of learning and memory at both an individual and a population level. Here we introduce a novel method of honey bee conditioning: APIS, the Automatic Performance Index System. In an enclosed walking arena where the interior is covered with an electric grid, presentation of odors from either end can be combined with weak electric shocks to form aversive associations. To quantify behavioral responses, we continuously monitor the movement of the bee by an automatic tracking system. We found that escapes from one side to the other, changes in velocity as well as distance and time spent away from the punished odor are suitable parameters to describe the bee's learning capabilities. Our data show that in a short-term memory test the response rate for the conditioned stimulus (CS) in APIS correlates well with response rate obtained from conventional Proboscis Extension Response (PER)-conditioning. Additionally, we discovered that bees modulate their behavior to aversively learned odors by reducing their rate, speed and magnitude of escapes and that both generalization and extinction seem to be different between appetitive and aversive stimuli. The advantages of this automatic system make it ideal for assessing learning rates in a standardized and convenient way, and its flexibility adds to the toolbox for studying honey bee behavior.

  17. APIS—a novel approach for conditioning honey bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirkerud, Nicholas H.; Wehmann, Henja-Niniane; Galizia, C. Giovanni; Gustav, David

    2013-01-01

    Honey bees perform robustly in different conditioning paradigms. This makes them excellent candidates for studying mechanisms of learning and memory at both an individual and a population level. Here we introduce a novel method of honey bee conditioning: APIS, the Automatic Performance Index System. In an enclosed walking arena where the interior is covered with an electric grid, presentation of odors from either end can be combined with weak electric shocks to form aversive associations. To quantify behavioral responses, we continuously monitor the movement of the bee by an automatic tracking system. We found that escapes from one side to the other, changes in velocity as well as distance and time spent away from the punished odor are suitable parameters to describe the bee's learning capabilities. Our data show that in a short-term memory test the response rate for the conditioned stimulus (CS) in APIS correlates well with response rate obtained from conventional Proboscis Extension Response (PER)-conditioning. Additionally, we discovered that bees modulate their behavior to aversively learned odors by reducing their rate, speed and magnitude of escapes and that both generalization and extinction seem to be different between appetitive and aversive stimuli. The advantages of this automatic system make it ideal for assessing learning rates in a standardized and convenient way, and its flexibility adds to the toolbox for studying honey bee behavior. PMID:23616753

  18. Effect of Citrus floral extracts on the foraging behavior of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona pectoralis (Dalla Torre

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julieta Grajales-Conesa

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Effect of Citrus floral extracts on the foraging behavior of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona pectoralis (Dalla Torre. Stingless bees have an important role as pollinators of many wild and cultivated plant species in tropical regions. Little is known, however, about the interaction between floral fragrances and the foraging behavior of meliponine species. Thus we investigated the chemical composition of the extracts of citric (lemon and orange flowers and their effects on the foraging behavior of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona pectoralis. We found that each type of flower has its own specific blend of major compounds: limonene (62.9% for lemon flowers, and farnesol (26.5%, (E-nerolidol (20.8%, and linalool (12.7% for orange flowers. In the foraging experiments the S. pectoralis workers were able to use the flower extracts to orient to the food source, overlooking plates baited with hexane only. However, orange flower extracts were seemingly more attractive to these worker bees, maybe because of the particular blend present in it. Our results reveal that these fragrances are very attractive to S. pectoralis, so we can infer that within citric orchards they could be important visitors in the study area; however habitat destruction, overuse of pesticides and the competitive override by managed honeybees might have put at risk their populations and thus the ecological services they provide to us.

  19. A Comparative Study of Relational Learning Capacity in Honeybees (Apis mellifera) and Stingless Bees (Melipona rufiventris)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Antonio Mauricio; de Souza, Deisy das Graças; Reinhard, Judith

    2012-01-01

    Background Learning of arbitrary relations is the capacity to acquire knowledge about associations between events or stimuli that do not share any similarities, and use this knowledge to make behavioural choices. This capacity is well documented in humans and vertebrates, and there is some evidence it exists in the honeybee (Apis mellifera). However, little is known about whether the ability for relational learning extends to other invertebrates, although many insects have been shown to possess excellent learning capacities in spite of their small brains. Methodology/Principal Findings Using a symbolic matching-to-sample procedure, we show that the honeybee Apis mellifera rapidly learns arbitrary relations between colours and patterns, reaching 68.2% correct choice for pattern-colour relations and 73.3% for colour-pattern relations. However, Apis mellifera does not transfer this knowledge to the symmetrical relations when the stimulus order is reversed. A second bee species, the stingless bee Melipona rufiventris from Brazil, seems unable to learn the same arbitrary relations between colours and patterns, although it exhibits excellent discrimination learning. Conclusions/Significance Our results confirm that the capacity for learning arbitrary relations is not limited to vertebrates, but even insects with small brains can perform this learning task. Interestingly, it seems to be a species-specific ability. The disparity in relational learning performance between the two bee species we tested may be linked to their specific foraging and recruitment strategies, which evolved in adaptation to different environments. PMID:23251542

  20. A comparative study of relational learning capacity in honeybees (Apis mellifera and stingless bees (Melipona rufiventris.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Mauricio Moreno

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Learning of arbitrary relations is the capacity to acquire knowledge about associations between events or stimuli that do not share any similarities, and use this knowledge to make behavioural choices. This capacity is well documented in humans and vertebrates, and there is some evidence it exists in the honeybee (Apis mellifera. However, little is known about whether the ability for relational learning extends to other invertebrates, although many insects have been shown to possess excellent learning capacities in spite of their small brains. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using a symbolic matching-to-sample procedure, we show that the honeybee Apis mellifera rapidly learns arbitrary relations between colours and patterns, reaching 68.2% correct choice for pattern-colour relations and 73.3% for colour-pattern relations. However, Apis mellifera does not transfer this knowledge to the symmetrical relations when the stimulus order is reversed. A second bee species, the stingless bee Melipona rufiventris from Brazil, seems unable to learn the same arbitrary relations between colours and patterns, although it exhibits excellent discrimination learning. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results confirm that the capacity for learning arbitrary relations is not limited to vertebrates, but even insects with small brains can perform this learning task. Interestingly, it seems to be a species-specific ability. The disparity in relational learning performance between the two bee species we tested may be linked to their specific foraging and recruitment strategies, which evolved in adaptation to different environments.

  1. A comparative study of relational learning capacity in honeybees (Apis mellifera) and stingless bees (Melipona rufiventris).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Antonio Mauricio; de Souza, Deisy das Graças; Reinhard, Judith

    2012-01-01

    Learning of arbitrary relations is the capacity to acquire knowledge about associations between events or stimuli that do not share any similarities, and use this knowledge to make behavioural choices. This capacity is well documented in humans and vertebrates, and there is some evidence it exists in the honeybee (Apis mellifera). However, little is known about whether the ability for relational learning extends to other invertebrates, although many insects have been shown to possess excellent learning capacities in spite of their small brains. Using a symbolic matching-to-sample procedure, we show that the honeybee Apis mellifera rapidly learns arbitrary relations between colours and patterns, reaching 68.2% correct choice for pattern-colour relations and 73.3% for colour-pattern relations. However, Apis mellifera does not transfer this knowledge to the symmetrical relations when the stimulus order is reversed. A second bee species, the stingless bee Melipona rufiventris from Brazil, seems unable to learn the same arbitrary relations between colours and patterns, although it exhibits excellent discrimination learning. Our results confirm that the capacity for learning arbitrary relations is not limited to vertebrates, but even insects with small brains can perform this learning task. Interestingly, it seems to be a species-specific ability. The disparity in relational learning performance between the two bee species we tested may be linked to their specific foraging and recruitment strategies, which evolved in adaptation to different environments.

  2. Genetic variability in captive populations of the stingless bee Tetragonisca angustula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santiago, Leandro R; Francisco, Flávio O; Jaffé, Rodolfo; Arias, Maria C

    2016-08-01

    Low genetic variability has normally been considered a consequence of animal husbandry and a major contributing factor to declining bee populations. Here, we performed a molecular analysis of captive and wild populations of the stingless bee Tetragonisca angustula, one of the most commonly kept species across South America. Microsatellite analyses showed similar genetic variability between wild and captive populations However, captive populations showed lower mitochondrial genetic variability. Male-mediated gene flow, transport and division of nests are suggested as the most probable explanations for the observed patterns of genetic structure. We conclude that increasing the number of colonies kept through nest divisions does not negatively affect nuclear genetic variability, which seems to be maintained by small-scale male dispersal and human-mediated nest transport. However, the transport of nests from distant localities should be practiced with caution given the high genetic differentiation observed between samples from western and eastern areas. The high genetic structure verified is the result of a long-term evolutionary process, and bees from distant localities may represent unique evolutionary lineages.

  3. The cuticular hydrocarbons profiles in the stingless bee Melipona marginata reflect task-related differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira-Caliman, M J; Nascimento, F S; Turatti, I C; Mateus, S; Lopes, N P; Zucchi, R

    2010-07-01

    Members of social insect colonies employ a large variety of chemical signals during their life. Of these, cuticular hydrocarbons are of primary importance for social insects since they allow for the recognition of conspecifics, nestmates and even members of different castes. The objectives of this study were (1) to characterize the variation of the chemical profiles among workers of the stingless bee Melipona marginata, and (2) to investigate the dependence of the chemical profiles on the age and on the behavior of the studied individuals. The results showed that cuticular hydrocarbon profiles of workers were composed of alkanes, alkenes and alkadienes that varied quantitatively and qualitatively according to function of workers in the colony. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Phenolic acids, hydrolyzable tannins, and antioxidant activity of geopropolis from the stingless bee Melipona fasciculata Smith.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutra, Richard Pereira; Abreu, Bruno Vinicius de Barros; Cunha, Mayara Soares; Batista, Marisa Cristina Aranha; Torres, Luce Maria Brandão; Nascimento, Flavia Raquel Fernandes; Ribeiro, Maria Nilce Sousa; Guerra, Rosane Nassar Meireles

    2014-03-26

    Geopropolis is a mixture of plant resins, waxes, and soil produced by the stingless bee Melipona fasciculata Smith. This paper describes the antioxidant activity and chemical composition of geopropolis produced by M. fasciculata. The total phenolic content determined with the Folin-Ciocalteu reagent was highest in the ethyl acetate fraction and hydroalcoholic extract. Antioxidant activity was assayed by the in vitro DPPH, ABTS, and FRAP assays. The hydroalcoholic extract and fractions of geopropolis, except for the hexane fraction, exhibited antioxidant activity against DPPH, ABTS, and FRAP. The phenolic compounds were identified by HPLC-DAD-MS on the basis of the evaluation of their UV-vis absorption maxima (λmax) and mass spectral analysis. Eleven compounds belonging to the classes of phenolic acids and hydrolyzable tannins (gallotannins and ellagitannins) were tentatively identified. These compounds are responsible for the antioxidant activity and high phenolic content of geopropolis produced by M. fasciculata.

  5. Identification of oxygen containing volatiles in cephalic secretions of workers of Brazilian stingless bees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francke Wittko

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available The volatile constituents of cephalic secrections of 11 Brazilian social stingless bee species of the Tetragonisca - Tetragona line have been analysed. By gas chromatography/mass spectrometry 145 compounds could be identified which include 72 esters, 22 alcohols, 16 carboxylic acids, 13 terpenoids, 8 aldehydes, 7 ketones, 4 aromatic compounds, 2 lactones and 1 dihydropyran. Structural relations, origin, and distribution of these compounds are discussed. With respect to qualitative and quantitative composition, each species shows a specific odour pattern which is made up by less specific components. To a certain extent, closely related species show some similarities in the odour bouquets. The mass spectrometric fragmentation patterns of typical wax type esters and DMDS derivatives of unsaturated esters are discussed in detail.

  6. Molecular genetic diversity in populations of the stingless bee Plebeia remota: A case study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flávio de Oliveira Francisco

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Genetic diversity is a major component of the biological diversity of an ecosystem. The survival of a population may be seriously threatened if its genetic diversity values are low. In this work, we measured the genetic diversity of the stingless bee Plebeia remota based on molecular data obtained by analyzing 15 microsatellite loci and sequencing two mitochondrial genes. Population structure and genetic diversity differed depending on the molecular marker analyzed: microsatellites showed low population structure and moderate to high genetic diversity, while mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA showed high population structure and low diversity in three populations. Queen philopatry and male dispersal behavior are discussed as the main reasons for these findings.

  7. Country-specific effects of neonicotinoid pesticides on honey bees and wild bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodcock, B A; Bullock, J M; Shore, R F; Heard, M S; Pereira, M G; Redhead, J; Ridding, L; Dean, H; Sleep, D; Henrys, P; Peyton, J; Hulmes, S; Hulmes, L; Sárospataki, M; Saure, C; Edwards, M; Genersch, E; Knäbe, S; Pywell, R F

    2017-06-30

    Neonicotinoid seed dressings have caused concern world-wide. We use large field experiments to assess the effects of neonicotinoid-treated crops on three bee species across three countries (Hungary, Germany, and the United Kingdom). Winter-sown oilseed rape was grown commercially with either seed coatings containing neonicotinoids (clothianidin or thiamethoxam) or no seed treatment (control). For honey bees, we found both negative (Hungary and United Kingdom) and positive (Germany) effects during crop flowering. In Hungary, negative effects on honey bees (associated with clothianidin) persisted over winter and resulted in smaller colonies in the following spring (24% declines). In wild bees ( Bombus terrestris and Osmia bicornis ), reproduction was negatively correlated with neonicotinoid residues. These findings point to neonicotinoids causing a reduced capacity of bee species to establish new populations in the year following exposure. Copyright © 2017 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.

  8. Life history strategy of the honey bee, Apis mellifera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seeley, Thomas D

    1978-01-01

    The feral honey bee queens (colonies) of central New York State (USA) show a K-type life history strategy. Their demographic characteristics include low early life mortality, low reproductive rate, long lifespan, high population stability and repeated reproductions. Identifying the life history strategy of these bees reveals the general pattern of selection for competitive ability, rather than productivity, which has shaped their societies. Selection for competitive power explains the adaptiveness (compared with alternatives found in many other insect societies) of the large perennial colonies, infrequent but expensive offspring, and efficient foraging which characterize the social organization of these bees.

  9. Analyses of avocado (Persea americana) nectar properties and their perception by honey bees (Apis mellifera).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afik, O; Dag, A; Kerem, Z; Shafir, S

    2006-09-01

    Honey bees are important avocado pollinators. However, due to the low attractiveness of flowers, pollination is often inadequate. Previous work has revealed that avocado honey is relatively unattractive to honey bees when compared with honey from competing flowers. We characterized avocado honey and nectar with respect to their odor, color, and composition of sugars, phenolic compounds, and minerals. Furthermore, we tested how honey bees perceive these parameters, using the proboscis extension response bioassay and preference experiments with free-flying bees. Naïve bees were indifferent to odors of avocado and citrus flowers and honey. Experienced bees, which were collected in the field during the blooming season, responded preferentially to odor of citrus flowers. The unique sugar composition of avocado nectar, which contains almost exclusively sucrose and a low concentration of the rare carbohydrate perseitol, and the dark brown color of avocado honey, had no negative effects on its attractiveness to the bees. Phenolic compounds extracted from avocado honey were attractive to bees and adding them to a solution of sucrose increased its attractiveness. Compared with citrus nectar and nonavocado honey, avocado nectar and honey were rich in a wide range of minerals, including potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, sulfur, iron, and copper. Potassium and phosphorus, the two major minerals, both had a repellent effect on the bees. Possible explanations for the presence of repellent components in avocado nectar are discussed.

  10. Viral infection affects sucrose responsiveness and homing ability of forager honey bees, Apis mellifera L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zhiguo; Chen, Yanping; Zhang, Shaowu; Chen, Shenglu; Li, Wenfeng; Yan, Limin; Shi, Liangen; Wu, Lyman; Sohr, Alex; Su, Songkun

    2013-01-01

    Honey bee health is mainly affected by Varroa destructor, viruses, Nosema spp., pesticide residues and poor nutrition. Interactions between these proposed factors may be responsible for the colony losses reported worldwide in recent years. In the present study, the effects of a honey bee virus, Israeli acute paralysis virus (IAPV), on the foraging behaviors and homing ability of European honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) were investigated based on proboscis extension response (PER) assays and radio frequency identification (RFID) systems. The pollen forager honey bees originated from colonies that had no detectable level of honey bee viruses and were manually inoculated with IAPV to induce the viral infection. The results showed that IAPV-inoculated honey bees were more responsive to low sucrose solutions compared to that of non-infected foragers. After two days of infection, around 10⁷ copies of IAPV were detected in the heads of these honey bees. The homing ability of IAPV-infected foragers was depressed significantly in comparison to the homing ability of uninfected foragers. The data provided evidence that IAPV infection in the heads may enable the virus to disorder foraging roles of honey bees and to interfere with brain functions that are responsible for learning, navigation, and orientation in the honey bees, thus, making honey bees have a lower response threshold to sucrose and lose their way back to the hive.

  11. Viral infection affects sucrose responsiveness and homing ability of forager honey bees, Apis mellifera L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhiguo Li

    Full Text Available Honey bee health is mainly affected by Varroa destructor, viruses, Nosema spp., pesticide residues and poor nutrition. Interactions between these proposed factors may be responsible for the colony losses reported worldwide in recent years. In the present study, the effects of a honey bee virus, Israeli acute paralysis virus (IAPV, on the foraging behaviors and homing ability of European honey bees (Apis mellifera L. were investigated based on proboscis extension response (PER assays and radio frequency identification (RFID systems. The pollen forager honey bees originated from colonies that had no detectable level of honey bee viruses and were manually inoculated with IAPV to induce the viral infection. The results showed that IAPV-inoculated honey bees were more responsive to low sucrose solutions compared to that of non-infected foragers. After two days of infection, around 10⁷ copies of IAPV were detected in the heads of these honey bees. The homing ability of IAPV-infected foragers was depressed significantly in comparison to the homing ability of uninfected foragers. The data provided evidence that IAPV infection in the heads may enable the virus to disorder foraging roles of honey bees and to interfere with brain functions that are responsible for learning, navigation, and orientation in the honey bees, thus, making honey bees have a lower response threshold to sucrose and lose their way back to the hive.

  12. Viral Infection Affects Sucrose Responsiveness and Homing Ability of Forager Honey Bees, Apis mellifera L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zhiguo; Chen, Yanping; Zhang, Shaowu; Chen, Shenglu; Li, Wenfeng; Yan, Limin; Shi, Liangen; Wu, Lyman; Sohr, Alex; Su, Songkun

    2013-01-01

    Honey bee health is mainly affected by Varroa destructor, viruses, Nosema spp., pesticide residues and poor nutrition. Interactions between these proposed factors may be responsible for the colony losses reported worldwide in recent years. In the present study, the effects of a honey bee virus, Israeli acute paralysis virus (IAPV), on the foraging behaviors and homing ability of European honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) were investigated based on proboscis extension response (PER) assays and radio frequency identification (RFID) systems. The pollen forager honey bees originated from colonies that had no detectable level of honey bee viruses and were manually inoculated with IAPV to induce the viral infection. The results showed that IAPV-inoculated honey bees were more responsive to low sucrose solutions compared to that of non-infected foragers. After two days of infection, around 107 copies of IAPV were detected in the heads of these honey bees. The homing ability of IAPV-infected foragers was depressed significantly in comparison to the homing ability of uninfected foragers. The data provided evidence that IAPV infection in the heads may enable the virus to disorder foraging roles of honey bees and to interfere with brain functions that are responsible for learning, navigation, and orientation in the honey bees, thus, making honey bees have a lower response threshold to sucrose and lose their way back to the hive. PMID:24130876

  13. A survey of the ethnozoological knowledge of honey bees Apis ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A survey of the ethnozoological knowledge of honey bee Apis mellifera in Ijebu division of South western Nigeria was carried out to examine the pattern of invasion, control methods of their invasion and their effects in life and economy of the people which also include the medicinal and traditional utilization. The Survey was ...

  14. The role of honey bees as pollinators in natural areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clare E. Aslan; Christina T. Liang; Ben Galindo; Hill Kimberly; Walter Topete

    2016-01-01

    The western or European honey bee (Apis mellifera) is the primary managed pollinator in US agricultural systems, and its importance for food production is widely recognized. However, the role of A. mellifera as an introduced species in natural areas is potentially more complicated. The impact of A. mellifera...

  15. Sensitivity analyses for simulating pesticide impacts on honey bee colonies

    Science.gov (United States)

    We employ Monte Carlo simulation and sensitivity analysis techniques to describe the population dynamics of pesticide exposure to a honey bee colony using the VarroaPop + Pesticide model. Simulations are performed of hive population trajectories with and without pesti...

  16. Evaluating the effects of mosquito control adulticides on honey bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    While mosquito control adulticides can be effective in rapidly reducing mosquito populations during times of high arbovirus transmission, the impacts of these control measures on pollinators has been of recent interest. The purpose of our study was to evaluate mosquito and honey bee mortality using ...

  17. Sensitivity analysis for simulating pesticide impacts on honey bee colonies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Background/Question/Methods Regulatory agencies assess risks to honey bees from pesticides through a tiered process that includes predictive modeling with empirical toxicity and chemical data of pesticides as a line of evidence. We evaluate the Varroapop colony model, proposed by...

  18. A comparative study of marriage in honey bees optimisation (MBO ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    2012-02-15

    Feb 15, 2012 ... In a typical mating, the queen mates with 7 to 20 drones. Each time the .... Honey bee mating optimisation model's pseudo-code ... for this analysis, which consists of 47 years of monthly time ... tive of Karkheh Reservoir is to control and regulate the flow of ..... Masters thesis, Maastricht University, Maastricht.

  19. Honeybee forage, bee visitation counts and the properties of honey ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The aim of the survey was to document honeybee forage plants and asses honeybee visitation counts on different forage plants and properties of honey from selected agro-ecological zones of Uganda. In order to achieve the objectives of the study, a survey of the apiaries and beekeepers was done by selecting fifteen bee ...

  20. Foraging and pollination behaviour of the African Honey bee ( Apis ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Foraging and pollination behaviour of the African Honey bee (Apis mellifera adansonii) on Callistemon rigidus flowers in Ngaoundere (Cameroon). F-N Tchuenguem Fohouo, J Messi, D Brüchner, B Bouba, G Mbofung, J Hentchoya Hemo. Abstract. No Abstract Available Journal of the Cameroon Academy of Sciences ...

  1. Methods to estimate breeding values in honey bees

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brascamp, E.W.; Bijma, P.

    2014-01-01

    Background Efficient methodologies based on animal models are widely used to estimate breeding values in farm animals. These methods are not applicable in honey bees because of their mode of reproduction. Observations are recorded on colonies, which consist of a single queen and thousands of workers

  2. Honey bee gut dysbiosis: A novel context for disease ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    A biofilm in the ileum of the honey bee has become a hot-spot of recent research. Highly host co-evolved, hindgut biofilm structure consists of six species that alter in relative abundance over the life of the adult worker, showing parallels with age-related senescence in Drosophila. Induced shifts ...

  3. The Honey Bee Parasite Nosema ceranae: Transmissible via Food Exchange?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smith, M.L.

    2012-01-01

    Nosema ceranae, a newly introduced parasite of the honey bee, Apis mellifera, is contributing to worldwide colony losses. Other Nosema species, such as N. apis, tend to be associated with increased defecation and spread via a fecal-oral pathway, but because N. ceranae does not induce defecation, it

  4. Hybrid origins of Australian honey bees (Apis mellifera)

    Science.gov (United States)

    With increased globalisation and homogenisation the maintenance of genetic integrity of local populations of agriculturally important species is of increasing concern. The honey bee provides an interesting perspective as it is both domesticated and wild, with a large native range and much larger int...

  5. Western honey bee management for crop pollination | Toni | African ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Because of the low application of this technology in Africa, research must be conducted in order to access the need of pollination service and then the profitability of this technology in the current African entomological fauna context. Despite its benefits, the use of managed Western honey bees can affect native pollinators ...

  6. The Impact of Pesticides on Honey Bees and Hence on Humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonina Jivan

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Bee crisis is threatening global food security, given the fact that one third of global agricultural production relies on pollination, especially that of honey bees. Despite their importance for human being, honey bees die with alarming speed. In recent years, in Europe and America, due to pollution, pesticides and neglect there was registered an unprecedented rate of disappearance of honey bees. Einstein's theory, the fact that once the bees cease to exist, humanity has only four years to extinction, seems now truer than ever. Thus, the issue has gained a tone of maximum urgency; the bee crisis can entirely shatter the world food security, already affected by the economic crisis. There are plenty of factors that could cause honey bee population decline: disease, parasites, climatic factors (high temperature, drought or decrease in the diversity of honey flora. It may sometimes happen that the beekeeper himself causes the poisoning of his honey bees, use inappropriate products which should protect the honey bees. It is therefore possible to imagine a multi-factorial explanation of problems encountered by honey bees and to underestimate the key role of pesticides. Considering these, a review of the impact of pesticides on honey bees should not be superfluous.

  7. APIS - a novel approach for conditioning honey bees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas Hagen Kirkerud

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Honey bees perform robustly in different conditioning paradigms. This makes them excellent candidates for studying mechanisms of learning and memory at both an individual and a population level. Here we introduce a novel method of honey bee conditioning: APIS, the Automatic Performance Index System. In an enclosed walking arena where the interior is covered with an electric grid, presentation of odours from either end can be combined with weak electric shocks to form aversive associations. To quantify behavioural responses, we continuously monitor the movement of the bee by an automatic tracking system. We found that escapes from one side to the other, changes in velocity as well as distance and time spent away from the punished odour are suitable parameters to describe the bee’s learning capabilities.Our data show that in a short-term memory test the response rate for the conditioned stimulus in APIS correlates well with response rate obtained from conventional Proboscis Extension Response (PER-conditioning. Additionally, we discovered that bees modulate their behaviour to aversively learned odours by reducing their rate, speed and magnitude of escapes and that both generalisation and extinction seem to be different between appetitive and aversive stimuli. The advantages of this automatic system make it ideal for assessing learning rates in a standardised and convenient way, and its flexibility adds to our toolbox for studying honey bee behaviour.

  8. Diagnosis and control of American foulbrood disease of honey bees in the Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Blacquiere, T.; Steen, van der J.J.M.

    2006-01-01

    American foulbrood disease (AFB), caused by the bacterium Paenibacillus larvae, is a disease of the European honey bee (Apis mellifera) and other honey bee species (Apis sp.). It is distributed world wide. Spores of the bacterium can infest larvae of the bees, ultimately leading to the death of the

  9. The neglected bee trees: European beech forests as a home for feral honey bee colonies

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    Patrick Laurenz Kohl

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available It is a common belief that feral honey bee colonies (Apis mellifera L. were eradicated in Europe through the loss of habitats, domestication by man and spread of pathogens and parasites. Interestingly, no scientific data are available, neither about the past nor the present status of naturally nesting honeybee colonies. We expected near-natural beech (Fagus sylvatica L. forests to provide enough suitable nest sites to be a home for feral honey bee colonies in Europe. Here, we made a first assessment of their occurrence and density in two German woodland areas based on two methods, the tracing of nest sites based on forager flight routes (beelining technique, and the direct inspection of potential cavity trees. Further, we established experimental swarms at forest edges and decoded dances for nest sites performed by scout bees in order to study how far swarms from beekeeper-managed hives would potentially move into a forest. We found that feral honey bee colonies regularly inhabit tree cavities in near-natural beech forests at densities of at least 0.11–0.14 colonies/km2. Colonies were not confined to the forest edges; they were also living deep inside the forests. We estimated a median distance of 2,600 m from the bee trees to the next apiaries, while scout bees in experimental swarms communicated nest sites in close distances (median: 470 m. We extrapolate that there are several thousand feral honey bee colonies in German woodlands. These have to be taken in account when assessing the role of forest areas in providing pollination services to the surrounding land, and their occurrence has implications for the species’ perception among researchers, beekeepers and conservationists. This study provides a starting point for investigating the life-histories and the ecological interactions of honey bees in temperate European forest environments.

  10. The neglected bee trees: European beech forests as a home for feral honey bee colonies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohl, Patrick Laurenz; Rutschmann, Benjamin

    2018-01-01

    It is a common belief that feral honey bee colonies ( Apis mellifera L.) were eradicated in Europe through the loss of habitats, domestication by man and spread of pathogens and parasites. Interestingly, no scientific data are available, neither about the past nor the present status of naturally nesting honeybee colonies. We expected near-natural beech ( Fagus sylvatica L.) forests to provide enough suitable nest sites to be a home for feral honey bee colonies in Europe. Here, we made a first assessment of their occurrence and density in two German woodland areas based on two methods, the tracing of nest sites based on forager flight routes (beelining technique), and the direct inspection of potential cavity trees. Further, we established experimental swarms at forest edges and decoded dances for nest sites performed by scout bees in order to study how far swarms from beekeeper-managed hives would potentially move into a forest. We found that feral honey bee colonies regularly inhabit tree cavities in near-natural beech forests at densities of at least 0.11-0.14 colonies/km 2 . Colonies were not confined to the forest edges; they were also living deep inside the forests. We estimated a median distance of 2,600 m from the bee trees to the next apiaries, while scout bees in experimental swarms communicated nest sites in close distances (median: 470 m). We extrapolate that there are several thousand feral honey bee colonies in German woodlands. These have to be taken in account when assessing the role of forest areas in providing pollination services to the surrounding land, and their occurrence has implications for the species' perception among researchers, beekeepers and conservationists. This study provides a starting point for investigating the life-histories and the ecological interactions of honey bees in temperate European forest environments.

  11. Prediction of social structure and genetic relatedness in colonies of the facultative polygynous stingless bee Melipona bicolor (Hymenoptera, Apidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dos Reis, Evelyze Pinheiro; de Oliveira Campos, Lucio Antonio; Tavares, Mara Garcia

    2011-04-01

    Stingless bee colonies typically consist of one single-mated mother queen and her worker offspring. The stingless bee Melipona bicolor (Hymenoptera: Apidae) shows facultative polygyny, which makes this species particularly suitable for testing theoretical expectations concerning social behavior. In this study, we investigated the social structure and genetic relatedness among workers from eight natural and six manipulated colonies of M. bicolor over a period of one year. The populations of M. bicolor contained monogynous and polygynous colonies. The estimated genetic relatedness among workers from monogynous and polygynous colonies was 0.75 ± 0.12 and 0.53 ± 0.16 (mean ± SEM), respectively. Although the parental genotypes had significant effects on genetic relatedness in monogynous and polygynous colonies, polygyny markedly decreased the relatedness among nestmate workers. Our findings also demonstrate that polygyny in M. bicolor may arise from the adoption of related or unrelated queens.

  12. Prediction of social structure and genetic relatedness in colonies of the facultative polygynous stingless bee Melipona bicolor (Hymenoptera, Apidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evelyze Pinheiro dos Reis

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Stingless bee colonies typically consist of one single-mated mother queen and her worker offspring. The stingless bee Melipona bicolor (Hymenoptera: Apidae shows facultative polygyny, which makes this species particularly suitable for testing theoretical expectations concerning social behavior. In this study, we investigated the social structure and genetic relatedness among workers from eight natural and six manipulated colonies of M. bicolor over a period of one year. The populations of M. bicolor contained monogynous and polygynous colonies. The estimated genetic relatedness among workers from monogynous and polygynous colonies was 0.75 ± 0.12 and 0.53 ± 0.16 (mean ± SEM, respectively. Although the parental genotypes had significant effects on genetic relatedness in monogynous and polygynous colonies, polygyny markedly decreased the relatedness among nestmate workers. Our findings also demonstrate that polygyny in M. bicolor may arise from the adoption of related or unrelated queens.

  13. Cytogenetic analysis of the Amazon stingless bee Melipona seminigra merrillae reveals different chromosome number for the genus

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    Izaura Bezerra Francini

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Cytogenetic analysis of the Amazon stingless bee Melipona seminigra merrillae, by conventional Giemsa staining and C-banding, revealed a different chromosome number for Melipona: 2n = 22 for females and diploid drones while the haploid drones present n = 11. There is no evidence of B chromosomes. This result contrasts with previous studies, in which the chromosome number of 19 Melipona species was determined as 2n = 18 for females and n = 9 for haploid males. Based on cytogenetic information available for other Melipona species, we propose that M. s. merrillae has a more derived diploid number. This indicates that chromosome number is not a conservative characteristic within the genus as previously thought. Cytogenetic data for stingless bees are scarce, especially in Amazon region. Additional studies will be very important in order to promote Melipona karyoevolution discussion and consequently a taxonomy review.

  14. The ability to cause infection in a pathogenic fungus uncovers a new biological feature of honey bee viruses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zhiguo; Su, Songkun; Hamilton, Michele; Yan, Limin; Chen, Yanping

    2014-07-01

    We demonstrated that honey bee viruses including Deformed wing virus (DWV), Black queen cell virus (BQCV) and Israeli acute paralysis virus (IAPV) could infect and replicate in the fungal pathogen Ascosphaera apis that causes honey bee chalkbrood disease, revealing a novel biological feature of honey bee viruses. The phylogenetic analysis show that viruses of fungal and honey bee origins form two clusters in the phylogenetic trees distinctly and that host range of honey bee viruses is dynamic. Further studies are warranted to investigate the impact of the viruses on the fitness of their fungal host and phenotypic effects the virus-fungus combination has on honey bee hosts. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  15. Outbreeding and lack of temporal genetic structure in a drone congregation of the neotropical stingless bee Scaptotrigona mexicana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Matthias Y; Moritz, Robin Fa; Kraus, F Bernhard

    2012-06-01

    Drone aggregations are a widespread phenomenon in many stingless bee species (Meliponini), but the ultimate and proximate causes for their formation are still not well understood. One adaptive explanation for this phenomenon is the avoidance of inbreeding, which is especially detrimental for stingless bees due to the combined effects of the complementary sex-determining system and the small effective population size caused by eusociality and monandry. We analyzed the temporal genetic dynamics of a drone aggregation of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona mexicana with microsatellite markers over a time window of four weeks. We estimated the drones of the aggregation to originate from a total of 55 colonies using sibship re-construction. There was no detectable temporal genetic differentiation or sub-structuring in the aggregation. Most important, we could exclude all colonies in close proximity of the aggregation as origin of the drones in the aggregation, implicating that they originate from more distant colonies. We conclude that the diverse genetic composition and the distant origin of the drones of the S. mexicana drone congregation provides an effective mechanism to avoid mating among close relatives.

  16. Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) and bee age impact honey bee pathophysiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    vanEngelsdorp, Dennis; Traynor, Kirsten S; Andree, Michael; Lichtenberg, Elinor M; Chen, Yanping; Saegerman, Claude; Cox-Foster, Diana L

    2017-01-01

    Honey bee (Apis mellifera) colonies continue to experience high annual losses that remain poorly explained. Numerous interacting factors have been linked to colony declines. Understanding the pathways linking pathophysiology with symptoms is an important step in understanding the mechanisms of disease. In this study we examined the specific pathologies associated with honey bees collected from colonies suffering from Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) and compared these with bees collected from apparently healthy colonies. We identified a set of pathological physical characteristics that occurred at different rates in CCD diagnosed colonies prior to their collapse: rectum distension, Malpighian tubule iridescence, fecal matter consistency, rectal enteroliths (hard concretions), and venom sac color. The multiple differences in rectum symptomology in bees from CCD apiaries and colonies suggest effected bees had trouble regulating water. To ensure that pathologies we found associated with CCD were indeed pathologies and not due to normal changes in physical appearances that occur as an adult bee ages (CCD colonies are assumed to be composed mostly of young bees), we documented the changes in bees of different ages taken from healthy colonies. We found that young bees had much greater incidences of white nodules than older cohorts. Prevalent in newly-emerged bees, these white nodules or cellular encapsulations indicate an active immune response. Comparing the two sets of characteristics, we determined a subset of pathologies that reliably predict CCD status rather than bee age (fecal matter consistency, rectal distension size, rectal enteroliths and Malpighian tubule iridescence) and that may serve as biomarkers for colony health. In addition, these pathologies suggest that CCD bees are experiencing disrupted excretory physiology. Our identification of these symptoms is an important first step in understanding the physiological pathways that underlie CCD and factors

  17. Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD and bee age impact honey bee pathophysiology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dennis vanEngelsdorp

    Full Text Available Honey bee (Apis mellifera colonies continue to experience high annual losses that remain poorly explained. Numerous interacting factors have been linked to colony declines. Understanding the pathways linking pathophysiology with symptoms is an important step in understanding the mechanisms of disease. In this study we examined the specific pathologies associated with honey bees collected from colonies suffering from Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD and compared these with bees collected from apparently healthy colonies. We identified a set of pathological physical characteristics that occurred at different rates in CCD diagnosed colonies prior to their collapse: rectum distension, Malpighian tubule iridescence, fecal matter consistency, rectal enteroliths (hard concretions, and venom sac color. The multiple differences in rectum symptomology in bees from CCD apiaries and colonies suggest effected bees had trouble regulating water. To ensure that pathologies we found associated with CCD were indeed pathologies and not due to normal changes in physical appearances that occur as an adult bee ages (CCD colonies are assumed to be composed mostly of young bees, we documented the changes in bees of different ages taken from healthy colonies. We found that young bees had much greater incidences of white nodules than older cohorts. Prevalent in newly-emerged bees, these white nodules or cellular encapsulations indicate an active immune response. Comparing the two sets of characteristics, we determined a subset of pathologies that reliably predict CCD status rather than bee age (fecal matter consistency, rectal distension size, rectal enteroliths and Malpighian tubule iridescence and that may serve as biomarkers for colony health. In addition, these pathologies suggest that CCD bees are experiencing disrupted excretory physiology. Our identification of these symptoms is an important first step in understanding the physiological pathways that underlie CCD and

  18. Replication of honey bee-associated RNA viruses across multiple bee species in apple orchards of Georgia, Germany and Kyrgyzstan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radzevičiūtė, Rita; Theodorou, Panagiotis; Husemann, Martin; Japoshvili, George; Kirkitadze, Giorgi; Zhusupbaeva, Aigul; Paxton, Robert J

    2017-06-01

    The essential ecosystem service of pollination is provided largely by insects, which are considered threatened by diverse biotic and abiotic global change pressures. RNA viruses are one such pressure, and have risen in prominence as a major threat for honey bees (Apis mellifera) and global apiculture, as well as a risk factor for other bee species through pathogen spill-over between managed honey bees and sympatric wild pollinator communities. Yet despite their potential role in global bee decline, the prevalence of honey bee-associated RNA viruses in wild bees is poorly known from both geographic and taxonomic perspectives. We screened members of pollinator communities (honey bees, bumble bees and other wild bees belonging to four families) collected from apple orchards in Georgia, Germany and Kyrgyzstan for six common honey bee-associated RNA virus complexes encompassing nine virus targets. The Deformed wing virus complex (DWV genotypes A and B) had the highest prevalence across all localities and host species and was the only virus complex found in wild bee species belonging to all four studied families. Based on amplification of negative-strand viral RNA, we found evidence for viral replication in wild bee species of DWV-A/DWV-B (hosts: Andrena haemorrhoa and several Bombus spp.) and Black queen cell virus (hosts: Anthophora plumipes, several Bombus spp., Osmia bicornis and Xylocopa spp.). Viral amplicon sequences revealed that DWV-A and DWV-B are regionally distinct but identical in two or more bee species at any one site, suggesting virus is shared amongst sympatric bee taxa. This study demonstrates that honey bee associated RNA viruses are geographically and taxonomically widespread, likely infective in wild bee species, and shared across bee taxa. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Intraspecific Aggression in Giant Honey Bees (Apis dorsata

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    Frank Weihmann

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available We investigated intraspecific aggression in experimental nests (expN1, expN2 of the giant honey bee Apis dorsata in Chitwan (Nepal, focusing on interactions between surface bees and two other groups of bees approaching the nest: (1 homing “nestmate” foragers landing on the bee curtain remained unmolested by guards; and (2 supposed “non-nestmate” bees, which were identified by their erratic flight patterns in front of the nest, such as hovering or sideways scanning and splaying their legs from their body, and were promptly attacked by the surface bees after landing. These supposed non-nestmate bees only occurred immediately before and after migration swarms, which had arrived in close vicinity (and were most likely scouting for a nesting site. In total, 231 of the “nestmate” foragers (fb and 102 approaches of such purported “non-nestmate” scouts (sc were analysed (total observation time expN1: 5.43 min regarding the evocation of shimmering waves (sh. During their landing the “nestmate” foragers provoked less shimmering waves (relnsh[fb] = 23/231 = 0.0996, relnsh[sc] = 75/102 = 0.7353; p <0.001, χ2-test with shorter duration (Dsh[fb] = 197 ± 17 ms, Dsh[sc] = 488 ± 16 ms; p <0.001; t-test than “non-nestmates”. Moreover, after having landed on the nest surface, the “non-nestmates” were attacked by the surface bees (expN1, expN2: observation time >18 min quite similarly to the defensive response against predatory wasps. Hence, the surface members of settled colonies respond differently to individual giant honey bees approaching the nest, depending on whether erratic flight patterns are displayed or not.

  20. Current Pesticide Risk Assessment Protocols Do Not Adequately Address Differences Between Honey Bees (Apis mellifera and Bumble Bees (Bombus spp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kimberly Stoner

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Recent research has demonstrated colony-level sublethal effects of imidacloprid on bumble bees, affecting foraging and food consumption, and thus colony growth and reproduction, at lower pesticide concentrations than for honey bee colonies. However, these studies may not reflect the full effects of neonicotinoids on bumble bees because bumble bee life cycles are different from those of honey bees. Unlike honey bees, bumble bees live in colonies for only a few months each year. Assessing the sublethal effects of systemic insecticides only on the colony level is appropriate for honey bees, but for bumble bees, this approach addresses just part of their annual life cycle. Queens are solitary from the time they leave their home colonies in fall until they produce their first workers the following year. Queens forage for pollen and nectar, and are thus exposed to more risk of direct pesticide exposure than honey bee queens. Almost no research has been done on pesticide exposure to and effects on bumble bee queens. Additional research should focus on critical periods in a bumble bee queen’s life which have the greatest nutritional demands, foraging requirements, and potential for exposure to pesticides, particularly the period during and after nest establishment in the spring when the queen must forage for the nutritional needs of her brood and for her own needs while she maintains an elevated body temperature in order to incubate the brood.

  1. The endangered Iris atropurpurea (Iridaceae) in Israel: honey-bees, night-sheltering male bees and female solitary bees as pollinators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watts, Stella; Sapir, Yuval; Segal, Bosmat; Dafni, Amots

    2013-01-01

    Background and Aims The coastal plain of Israel hosts the last few remaining populations of the endemic Iris atropurpurea (Iridaceae), a Red List species of high conservation priority. The flowers offer no nectar reward. Here the role of night-sheltering male solitary bees, honey-bees and female solitary bees as pollinators of I. atropurpurea is documented. Methods Breeding system, floral longevity, stigma receptivity, visitation rates, pollen loads, pollen deposition and removal and fruit- and seed-set were investigated. Key Results The main wild pollinators of this plant are male eucerine bees, and to a lesser extent, but with the potential to transfer pollen, female solitary bees. Honey-bees were found to be frequent diurnal visitors; they removed large quantities of pollen and were as effective as male sheltering bees at pollinating this species. The low density of pollen carried by male solitary bees was attributed to grooming activities, pollen displacement when bees aggregated together in flowers and pollen depletion by honey-bees. In the population free of honey-bee hives, male bees carried significantly more pollen grains on their bodies. Results from pollen analysis and pollen deposited on stigmas suggest that inadequate pollination may be an important factor limiting fruit-set. In the presence of honey-bees, eucerine bees were low removal–low deposition pollinators, whereas honey-bees were high removal–low deposition pollinators, because they removed large amounts into corbiculae and deposited relatively little onto receptive stigmas. Conclusions Even though overall, both bee taxa were equally effective pollinators, we suggest that honey-bees have the potential to reduce the amount of pollen available for plant reproduction, and to reduce the amount of resources available to solitary bee communities. The results of this study have potential implications for the conservation of this highly endangered plant species if hives are permitted inside

  2. Preliminary Characterization of Mitochondrial Genome of Melipona scutellaris, a Brazilian Stingless Bee

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    Manuella Souza Silverio

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Bees are manufacturers of relevant economical products and have a pollinator role fundamental to ecosystems. Traditionally, studies focused on the genus Melipona have been mostly based on behavioral, and social organization and ecological aspects. Only recently the evolutionary history of this genus has been assessed using molecular markers, including mitochondrial genes. Even though these studies have shed light on the evolutionary history of the Melipona genus, a more accurate picture may emerge when full nuclear and mitochondrial genomes of Melipona species become available. Here we present the assembly, annotation, and characterization of a draft mitochondrial genome of the Brazilian stingless bee Melipona scutellaris using Melipona bicolor as a reference organism. Using Illumina MiSeq data, we achieved the annotation of all protein coding genes, as well as the genes for the two ribosomal subunits (16S and 12S and transfer RNA genes as well. Using the COI sequence as a DNA barcode, we found that M. cramptoni is the closest species to M. scutellaris.

  3. Preliminary characterization of mitochondrial genome of Melipona scutellaris, a Brazilian stingless bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silverio, Manuella Souza; Rodovalho, Vinícius de Rezende; Bonetti, Ana Maria; de Oliveira, Guilherme Corrêa; Cuadros-Orellana, Sara; Ueira-Vieira, Carlos; Rodrigues dos Santos, Anderson

    2014-01-01

    Bees are manufacturers of relevant economical products and have a pollinator role fundamental to ecosystems. Traditionally, studies focused on the genus Melipona have been mostly based on behavioral, and social organization and ecological aspects. Only recently the evolutionary history of this genus has been assessed using molecular markers, including mitochondrial genes. Even though these studies have shed light on the evolutionary history of the Melipona genus, a more accurate picture may emerge when full nuclear and mitochondrial genomes of Melipona species become available. Here we present the assembly, annotation, and characterization of a draft mitochondrial genome of the Brazilian stingless bee Melipona scutellaris using Melipona bicolor as a reference organism. Using Illumina MiSeq data, we achieved the annotation of all protein coding genes, as well as the genes for the two ribosomal subunits (16S and 12S) and transfer RNA genes as well. Using the COI sequence as a DNA barcode, we found that M. cramptoni is the closest species to M. scutellaris.

  4. Very low mitochondrial variability in a stingless bee endemic to cerrado

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    Rute Magalhães Brito

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Partamona mulata is a stingless bee species endemic to cerrado, a severely threatened phytogeographical domain. Clearing for pasture without proper soil treatment in the cerrado facilitates the proliferation of termite ground nests, which are the nesting sites for P. mulata. The genetic consequences of these changes in the cerrado environment for bee populations are still understudied. In this work, we analyzed the genetic diversity of 48 colonies of P. mulata collected throughout the species' distribution range by sequencing two mitochondrial genes, cytochrome oxidase I and cytochrome B. A very low polymorphism rate was observed when compared to another Partamona species from the Atlantic forest. Exclusive haplotypes were observed in two of the five areas sampled. The sharing of two haplotypes between collection sites separated by a distance greater than the flight range of queens indicates an ancient distribution for these haplotypes. The low haplotype and nucleotide diversity observed here suggests that P. mulata is either a young species or one that has been through population bottlenecks. Locally predominant and exclusive haplotypes (H2 and H4 may have been derived from local remnants through cerrado deforestation and the expansion of a few colonies with abundant nesting sites.

  5. Honey bees (Apis mellifera) as explosives detectors: exploring proboscis extension reflex conditioned response to trinitrotolulene (TNT)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Taylor-mccabe, Kirsten J [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Wingo, Robert M [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Haarmann, Timothy K [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2008-01-01

    We examined honey bee's associative learning response to conditioning with trinitrotolulene (TNT) vapor concentrations generated at three temperatures and their ability to be reconditioned after a 24 h period. We used classical conditioning of the proboscis extension (PER) in honey bees using TNT vapors as the conditioned stimulus and sucrose as the unconditioned stimulus. We conducted fifteen experimental trials with an explosives vapor generator set at 43 C, 25 C and 5 C, producing three concentrations of explosives (1070 ppt, 57 ppt, and 11 ppt). Our objective was to test the honey bee's ability to exhibit a conditioned response to TNT vapors at all three concentrations by comparing the mean percentage of honey bees successfully exhibiting a conditioned response within each temperature group. Furthermore, we conducted eight experimental trials to test the honey bee's ability to retain their ability to exhibit a conditioned response to TNT after 24h period by comparing the mean percentage of honey bees with a conditioned response TNT on the first day compared to the percentage of honey bees with a conditioned response to TNT on the second day. Results indicate that there was no significant difference between the mean percentage of honey bees with a conditioned response to TNT vapors between three temperature groups. There was a significant difference between the percentage of honey bees exhibiting conditioned response on the first day of training compared to the percentage of honey bees exhibiting conditioned response 24 h after training. Our experimental results indicate that honey bees can be trained to exhibit a conditioned response to a range of TNT concentrations via PER However, it appears that the honey bee's ability to retain the conditioned response to TNT vapors after 24h significantly decreases.

  6. Rapid parallel evolution overcomes global honey bee parasite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oddie, Melissa; Büchler, Ralph; Dahle, Bjørn; Kovacic, Marin; Le Conte, Yves; Locke, Barbara; de Miranda, Joachim R; Mondet, Fanny; Neumann, Peter

    2018-05-16

    In eusocial insect colonies nestmates cooperate to combat parasites, a trait called social immunity. However, social immunity failed for Western honey bees (Apis mellifera) when the ectoparasitic mite Varroa destructor switched hosts from Eastern honey bees (Apis cerana). This mite has since become the most severe threat to A. mellifera world-wide. Despite this, some isolated A. mellifera populations are known to survive infestations by means of natural selection, largely by supressing mite reproduction, but the underlying mechanisms of this are poorly understood. Here, we show that a cost-effective social immunity mechanism has evolved rapidly and independently in four naturally V. destructor-surviving A. mellifera populations. Worker bees of all four 'surviving' populations uncapped/recapped worker brood cells more frequently and targeted mite-infested cells more effectively than workers in local susceptible colonies. Direct experiments confirmed the ability of uncapping/recapping to reduce mite reproductive success without sacrificing nestmates. Our results provide striking evidence that honey bees can overcome exotic parasites with simple qualitative and quantitative adaptive shifts in behaviour. Due to rapid, parallel evolution in four host populations this appears to be a key mechanism explaining survival of mite infested colonies.

  7. Queens and Workers Contribute Differently to Adaptive Evolution in Bumble Bees and Honey Bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harpur, Brock A; Dey, Alivia; Albert, Jennifer R; Patel, Sani; Hines, Heather M; Hasselmann, Martin; Packer, Laurence; Zayed, Amro

    2017-09-01

    Eusociality represents a major transition in evolution and is typified by cooperative brood care and reproductive division of labor between generations. In bees, this division of labor allows queens and workers to phenotypically specialize. Worker traits associated with helping are thought to be crucial to the fitness of a eusocial lineage, and recent studies of honey bees (genus Apis) have found that adaptively evolving genes often have worker-biased expression patterns. It is unclear however if worker-biased genes are disproportionately acted on by strong positive selection in all eusocial insects. We undertook a comparative population genomics study of bumble bees (Bombus) and honey bees to quantify natural selection on queen- and worker-biased genes across two levels of social complexity. Despite sharing a common eusocial ancestor, genes, and gene groups with the highest levels of positive selection were often unique within each genus, indicating that life history and the environment, but not sociality per se, drives patterns of adaptive molecular evolution. We uncovered differences in the contribution of queen- and worker-biased genes to adaptive evolution in bumble bees versus honey bees. Unlike honey bees, where worker-biased genes are enriched for signs of adaptive evolution, genes experiencing positive selection in bumble bees were predominately expressed by reproductive foundresses during the initial solitary-founding stage of colonies. Our study suggests that solitary founding is a major selective pressure and that the loss of queen totipotency may cause a change in the architecture of selective pressures upon the social insect genome. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  8. The metabolic fate of nectar nicotine in worker honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    du Rand, Esther E; Pirk, Christian W W; Nicolson, Susan W; Apostolides, Zeno

    2017-04-01

    Honey bees (Apis mellifera) are generalist pollinators that forage for nectar and pollen of a very large variety of plant species, exposing them to a diverse range of secondary metabolites produced as chemical defences against herbivory. Honey bees can tolerate high levels of many of these toxic compounds, including the alkaloid nicotine, in their diet without incurring apparent fitness costs. Very little is known about the underlying detoxification processes mediating this tolerance. We examined the metabolic fate of nicotine in newly emerged worker bees using radiolabeled nicotine and LC-MS/MS analysis to determine the kinetic distribution profile of nicotine as well as the absence or presence and identity of any nicotine-derived metabolites. Nicotine metabolism was extensive; virtually no unmetabolised nicotine were recovered from the rectum. The major metabolite found was 4-hydroxy-4-(3-pyridyl) butanoic acid, the end product of 2'C-oxidation of nicotine. It is the first time that 4-hydroxy-4-(3-pyridyl) butanoic acid has been identified in an insect as a catabolite of nicotine. Lower levels of cotinine, cotinine N-oxide, 3'hydroxy-cotinine, nicotine N-oxide and norcotinine were also detected. Our results demonstrated that formation of 4-hydroxy-4-(3-pyridyl) butanoic acid is quantitatively the most significant pathway of nicotine metabolism in honey bees and that the rapid excretion of unmetabolised nicotine does not contribute significantly to nicotine tolerance in honey bees. In nicotine-tolerant insects that do not rely on the rapid excretion of nicotine like the Lepidoptera, it is possible that the 2'C-oxidation of nicotine is the conserved metabolic pathway instead of the generally assumed 5'C-oxidation pathway. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Why, when and where did honey bee dance communication evolve?

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    Robbie eI'Anson Price

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Honey bees (Apis sp. are the only known bee genus that uses nest-based communication to provide nest-mates with information about the location of resources, the so-called dance language. Successful foragers perform waggle dances for high quality food sources and suitable nest-sites during swarming. However, since many species of social insects do not communicate the location of resources to their nest-mates, the question of why the dance language evolved is of ongoing interest. We review recent theoretical and empirical research into the ecological circumstances that make dance communication beneficial in present day environments. This research suggests that the dance language is most beneficial when food sources differ greatly in quality and are hard to find. The dances of extant honey bee species differ in important ways, and phylogenetic studies suggest an increase in dance complexity over time: species with the least complex dance were the first to appear and species with the most complex dance are the most derived. We review the fossil record of honey bees and speculate about the time and context (foraging vs. swarming in which spatially referential dance communication might have evolved. We conclude that there are few certainties about when the dance language first appeared; dance communication could be older than 40 million years and, thus, predate the genus Apis, or it could be as recent as 20 million years when extant honey bee species diverged during the early Miocene. The most parsimonious scenario assumes it evolved in a sub-tropical to temperate climate, with patchy vegetation somewhere in Eurasia.

  10. Differentially expressed regulatory genes in honey bee caste development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hepperle, C.; Hartfelder, K.

    2001-03-01

    In the honey bee, an eminently fertile queen with up to 200 ovarioles per ovary monopolizes colony level reproduction. In contrast, worker bees have only few ovarioles and are essentially sterile. This phenotype divergence is a result of caste-specifically modulated juvenile hormone and ecdysteroid titers in larval development. In this study we employed a differential-display reverse transcription (DDRT)-PCR protocol to detect ecdysteroid-regulated gene expression during a critical phase of caste development. We identified a Ftz-F1 homolog and a Cut-like transcript. Ftz-F1 could be a putative element of the metamorphic ecdysone response cascade of bees, whereas Cut-like proteins are described as transcription factors involved in maintaining cellular differentiation states. The downregulation of both factors can be interpreted as steps in the metamorphic degradation of ovarioles in worker-bee ovaries.

  11. Patterns of viral infection in honey bee queens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Francis, Roy Mathew; Kryger, Per; Nielsen, Steen Lykke

    2013-01-01

    by two real-time PCRs: one for the presence of deformed wing virus (DWV), and one that would detect sequences of acute bee-paralysis virus, Kashmir bee virus and Israeli acute paralysis virus (AKI complex). Worker bees accompanying the queen were also analysed. The queens could be divided into three......The well-being of a colony and replenishment of the workers depends on a healthy queen. Diseases in queens are seldom reported, and our knowledge on viral infection in queens is limited. In this study, 86 honey bee queens were collected from beekeepers in Denmark. All queens were tested separately...... groups based on the level of infection in their head, thorax, ovary, intestines and spermatheca. Four queens exhibited egg-laying deficiency, but visually all queens appeared healthy. Viral infection was generally at a low level in terms of AKI copy numbers, with 134/430 tissues (31 %) showing...

  12. Genetic diversity of Iranian honey bee (Apis mellifera meda Skorikow, 1829) populations based on ISSR markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahimi, A; Mirmoayedi, A; Kahrizi, D; Zarei, L; Jamali, S

    2016-04-30

    Honey bee is one of the most important insects considering its role in agriculture,ecology and economy as a whole. In this study, the genetic diversity of different Iranian honey bee populations was evaluated using inter simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers. During May to September 2014, 108 young worker honey bees were collected from six different populations in 30 different geoclimatic locations from Golestan, Mazendaran, Guilan, West Azerbaijan, East Azerbaijan, Ardebil provinces of Iran. DNA was extracted from the worker honey bees. The quality and quantity of extracted DNA were measured. A set of ten primers were screened with the laboratory populations of honey bees. The number of fragments produced in the different honey bee populations varied from 3 to 10, varying within 150 to 1500 bp. The used ten ISSR primers generated 40 polymorphic fragments, and the average heterozygosity for each primer was 0.266. Maximum numbers of bands were recorded for primer A1. A dendrogram based on the Unweighted Pair Group Method with Arithmetic mean (UPGMA) method generated two sub-clusters. Honey bee populations of Golestan, Mazendaran, Guilan provinces were located in the first group. The second group included honey bee populations of Ardebil, West Azerbaijan, East Azerbaijan provinces, but this group showed a close relationship with other populations. The results showed obviously the ability of the ISSR marker technique to detect the genetic diversity among the honey bee populations.

  13. Can we disrupt the sensing of honey bees by the bee parasite Varroa destructor?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eliash, Nurit; Singh, Nitin Kumar; Kamer, Yosef; Pinnelli, Govardhana Reddy; Plettner, Erika; Soroker, Victoria

    2014-01-01

    The ectoparasitic mite, Varroa destructor, is considered to be one of the most significant threats to apiculture around the world. Chemical cues are known to play a significant role in the host-finding behavior of Varroa. The mites distinguish between bees from different task groups, and prefer nurses over foragers. We examined the possibility of disrupting the Varroa--honey bee interaction by targeting the mite's olfactory system. In particular, we examined the effect of volatile compounds, ethers of cis 5-(2'-hydroxyethyl) cyclopent-2-en-1-ol or of dihydroquinone, resorcinol or catechol. We tested the effect of these compounds on the Varroa chemosensory organ by electrophysiology and on behavior in a choice bioassay. The electrophysiological studies were conducted on the isolated foreleg. In the behavioral bioassay, the mite's preference between a nurse and a forager bee was evaluated. We found that in the presence of some compounds, the response of the Varroa chemosensory organ to honey bee headspace volatiles significantly decreased. This effect was dose dependent and, for some of the compounds, long lasting (>1 min). Furthermore, disruption of the Varroa volatile detection was accompanied by a reversal of the mite's preference from a nurse to a forager bee. Long-term inhibition of the electrophysiological responses of mites to the tested compounds was a good predictor for an alteration in the mite's host preference. These data indicate the potential of the selected compounds to disrupt the Varroa--honey bee associations, thus opening new avenues for Varroa control.

  14. Chasing your honey: Worldwide diaspora of the small hive beetle, a parasite of honey bee colonies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Endemic to sub-Saharan Africa, small hive beetles (Aethina tumida) are now an invasive pest of honey bee colonies in Australia and North America. Knowledge on the introduction(s) from Africa into and between the current ranges will shed light on pest populations, invasion pathways and contribute to ...

  15. Genes versus environment: geography and phylogenetic relationships shape the chemical profiles of stingless bees on a global scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonhardt, Sara D.; Rasmussen, Claus; Schmitt, Thomas

    2013-01-01

    Chemical compounds are highly important in the ecology of animals. In social insects, compounds on the body surface represent a particularly interesting trait, because they comprise different compound classes that are involved in different functions, such as communication, recognition and protection, all of which can be differentially affected by evolutionary processes. Here, we investigate the widely unknown and possibly antagonistic influence of phylogenetic and environmental factors on the composition of the cuticular chemistry of tropical stingless bees. We chose stingless bees because some species are unique in expressing not only self-produced compounds, but also compounds that are taken up from the environment. By relating the cuticular chemistry of 40 bee species from all over the world to their molecular phylogeny and geographical occurrence, we found that distribution patterns of different groups of compounds were differentially affected by genetic relatedness and biogeography. The ability to acquire environmental compounds was, for example, highly correlated with the bees' phylogeny and predominated in evolutionarily derived species. Owing to the presence of environmentally derived compounds, those species further expressed a higher chemical and thus functional diversity. In Old World species, chemical similarity of both environmentally derived and self-produced compounds was particularly high among sympatric species, even when they were less related to each other than to allopatric species, revealing a strong environmental effect even on largely genetically determined compounds. Thus, our findings do not only reveal an unexpectedly strong influence of the environment on the cuticular chemistry of stingless bees, but also demonstrate that even within one morphological trait (an insect's cuticular profile), different components (compound classes) can be differentially affected by different drivers (relatedness and biogeography), depending on the

  16. Genetic variability of European honey bee, Apis mellifera in mid hills ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Bassi

    2014-02-19

    Feb 19, 2014 ... honey bees: bee brood was lyophilized, and ground with liquid nitrogen solution with .... fied RAPD loci in nine genotypes of A. mellifera (Figure. 3). The amplified .... used the polymorphism and segregation of RAPD markers.

  17. The Status of Honey Bee Health in Italy: Results from the Nationwide Bee Monitoring Network.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudio Porrini

    Full Text Available In Italy a nation-wide monitoring network was established in 2009 in response to significant honey bee colony mortality reported during 2008. The network comprised of approximately 100 apiaries located across Italy. Colonies were sampled four times per year, in order to assess the health status and to collect samples for pathogen, chemical and pollen analyses. The prevalence of Nosema ceranae ranged, on average, from 47-69% in 2009 and from 30-60% in 2010, with strong seasonal variation. Virus prevalence was higher in 2010 than in 2009. The most widespread viruses were BQCV, DWV and SBV. The most frequent pesticides in all hive contents were organophosphates and pyrethroids such as coumaphos and tau-fluvalinate. Beeswax was the most frequently contaminated hive product, with 40% of samples positive and 13% having multiple residues, while 27% of bee-bread and 12% of honey bee samples were contaminated. Colony losses in 2009/10 were on average 19%, with no major differences between regions of Italy. In 2009, the presence of DWV in autumn was positively correlated with colony losses. Similarly, hive mortality was higher in BQCV infected colonies in the first and second visits of the year. In 2010, colony losses were significantly related to the presence of pesticides in honey bees during the second sampling period. Honey bee exposure to poisons in spring could have a negative impact at the colony level, contributing to increase colony mortality during the beekeeping season. In both 2009 and 2010, colony mortality rates were positively related to the percentage of agricultural land surrounding apiaries, supporting the importance of land use for honey bee health.

  18. Imidacloprid decreases honey bee survival but does not affect the gut microbiome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raymann, Kasie; Motta, Erick V S; Girard, Catherine; Riddington, Ian M; Dinser, Jordan A; Moran, Nancy A

    2018-04-20

    Accumulating evidence suggests that pesticides have played a role in the increased rate of honeybee colony loss. One of the most commonly used pesticides in the US is the neonicotinoid imidacloprid. Although the primary mode of action of imidacloprid is the insect nervous system, it has also been shown to cause changes insects' digestive physiology, and alter the microbiota of Drosophila melanogaster larvae. The honey bee gut microbiome plays a major role in bee health. Although many studies have shown that imidacloprid affects honey bee behavior, its impact on the microbiome has not been fully elucidated. Here we investigated the impact of imidacloprid on the gut microbiome composition, survivorship of honey bees, and susceptibility to pathogens. Consistent with other studies, we show that imidacloprid exposure results in elevated mortality of honey bees in the hive and increases susceptibility to infection by pathogens. However, we did not find evidence that imidacloprid affects the gut bacterial community of honey bees. Our in vitro experiments demonstrated that honey bee gut bacteria can grow in the presence of imidacloprid, and we found some evidence that imidacloprid can be metabolized in the bee gut environment. However, none of the individual bee gut bacterial species tested could metabolize imidacloprid, suggesting that the observed metabolism of imidacloprid in vitro bee gut cultures is not caused by the gut bacteria. Overall, our results indicate that imidacloprid causes increased mortality in honey bees, but this mortality does not appear to be linked to the microbiome. Importance Growing evidence suggests that the extensive use of pesticides has played a large role in the increased rate of honey bee colony loss. Despite extensive research on the effects of imidacloprid on honey bees, it is still unknown whether it impacts the community structure of the gut microbiome. Here we investigated the impact of imidacloprid on the gut microbiome composition

  19. Native Honey Bees Outperform Adventive Honey Bees in Increasing Pyrus bretschneideri (Rosales: Rosaceae) Pollination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gemeda, Tolera Kumsa; Shao, Youquan; Wu, Wenqin; Yang, Huipeng; Huang, Jiaxing; Wu, Jie

    2017-12-05

    The foraging behavior of different bee species is a key factor influencing the pollination efficiency of different crops. Most pear species exhibit full self-incompatibility and thus depend entirely on cross-pollination. However, as little is known about the pear visitation preferences of native Apis cerana (Fabricius; Hymenoptera: Apidae) and adventive Apis mellifera (L.; Hymenoptera: Apidae) in China. A comparative analysis was performed to explore the pear-foraging differences of these species under the natural conditions of pear growing areas. The results show significant variability in the pollen-gathering tendency of these honey bees. Compared to A. mellifera, A. cerana begins foraging at an earlier time of day and gathers a larger amount of pollen in the morning. Based on pollen collection data, A. mellifera shows variable preferences: vigorously foraging on pear on the first day of observation but collecting pollen from non-target floral resources on other experimental days. Conversely, A. cerana persists in pear pollen collection, without shifting preference to other competitive flowers. Therefore, A. cerana outperforms adventive A. mellifera with regard to pear pollen collection under natural conditions, which may lead to increased pear pollination. This study supports arguments in favor of further multiplication and maintenance of A. cerana for pear and other native crop pollination. Moreover, it is essential to develop alternative pollination management techniques to utilize A. mellifera for pear pollination. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Field-level sublethal effects of approved bee hive chemicals on Honey Bees (Apis mellifera L).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berry, Jennifer A; Hood, W Michael; Pietravalle, Stéphane; Delaplane, Keith S

    2013-01-01

    In a study replicated across two states and two years, we tested the sublethal effects on honey bees of the miticides Apistan (tau fluvalinate) and Check Mite+ (coumaphos) and the wood preservative copper naphthenate applied at label rates in field conditions. A continuous covariate, a colony Varroa mite index, helped us disambiguate the effects of the chemicals on bees while adjusting for a presumed benefit of controlling mites. Mite levels in colonies treated with Apistan or Check Mite+ were not different from levels in non-treated controls. Experimental chemicals significantly decreased 3-day brood survivorship and increased construction of queen supercedure cells compared to non-treated controls. Bees exposed to Check Mite+ as immatures had higher legacy mortality as adults relative to non-treated controls, whereas bees exposed to Apistan had improved legacy mortality relative to non-treated controls. Relative to non-treated controls, Check Mite+ increased adult emergence weight. Although there was a treatment effect on a test of associative learning, it was not possible to statistically separate the treatment means, but bees treated with Apistan performed comparatively well. And finally, there were no detected effects of bee hive chemical on colony bee population, amount of brood, amount of honey, foraging rate, time required for marked released bees to return to their nest, percentage of released bees that return to the nest, and colony Nosema spore loads. To our knowledge, this is the first study to examine sublethal effects of bee hive chemicals applied at label rates under field conditions while disambiguating the results from mite control benefits realized from the chemicals. Given the poor performance of the miticides at reducing mites and their inconsistent effects on the host, these results defend the use of bee health management practices that minimize use of exotic hive chemicals.

  1. Field-level sublethal effects of approved bee hive chemicals on Honey Bees (Apis mellifera L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer A Berry

    Full Text Available In a study replicated across two states and two years, we tested the sublethal effects on honey bees of the miticides Apistan (tau fluvalinate and Check Mite+ (coumaphos and the wood preservative copper naphthenate applied at label rates in field conditions. A continuous covariate, a colony Varroa mite index, helped us disambiguate the effects of the chemicals on bees while adjusting for a presumed benefit of controlling mites. Mite levels in colonies treated with Apistan or Check Mite+ were not different from levels in non-treated controls. Experimental chemicals significantly decreased 3-day brood survivorship and increased construction of queen supercedure cells compared to non-treated controls. Bees exposed to Check Mite+ as immatures had higher legacy mortality as adults relative to non-treated controls, whereas bees exposed to Apistan had improved legacy mortality relative to non-treated controls. Relative to non-treated controls, Check Mite+ increased adult emergence weight. Although there was a treatment effect on a test of associative learning, it was not possible to statistically separate the treatment means, but bees treated with Apistan performed comparatively well. And finally, there were no detected effects of bee hive chemical on colony bee population, amount of brood, amount of honey, foraging rate, time required for marked released bees to return to their nest, percentage of released bees that return to the nest, and colony Nosema spore loads. To our knowledge, this is the first study to examine sublethal effects of bee hive chemicals applied at label rates under field conditions while disambiguating the results from mite control benefits realized from the chemicals. Given the poor performance of the miticides at reducing mites and their inconsistent effects on the host, these results defend the use of bee health management practices that minimize use of exotic hive chemicals.

  2. Comparative testing of different methods for evaluation of Varroa destructor infestation of honey bee colonies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nikolay D. Dobrynin

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Different methods for evaluation of the degree of Varroa destructor infestation of honey bee colonies were tested. The methods using in vivo evaluation were the most sparing for the bees but less precise. The methods using evaluation with the killing of the bees or brood were the most precise but less sparing for bees.

  3. A Diverse Range of Novel RNA Viruses in Geographically Distinct Honey Bee Populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remnant, Emily J; Shi, Mang; Buchmann, Gabriele; Blacquière, Tjeerd; Holmes, Edward C; Beekman, Madeleine; Ashe, Alyson

    2017-08-15

    Understanding the diversity and consequences of viruses present in honey bees is critical for maintaining pollinator health and managing the spread of disease. The viral landscape of honey bees ( Apis mellifera ) has changed dramatically since the emergence of the parasitic mite Varroa destructor , which increased the spread of virulent variants of viruses such as deformed wing virus. Previous genomic studies have focused on colonies suffering from infections by Varroa and virulent viruses, which could mask other viral species present in honey bees, resulting in a distorted view of viral diversity. To capture the viral diversity within colonies that are exposed to mites but do not suffer the ultimate consequences of the infestation, we examined populations of honey bees that have evolved naturally or have been selected for resistance to Varroa This analysis revealed seven novel viruses isolated from honey bees sampled globally, including the first identification of negative-sense RNA viruses in honey bees. Notably, two rhabdoviruses were present in three geographically diverse locations and were also present in Varroa mites parasitizing the bees. To characterize the antiviral response, we performed deep sequencing of small RNA populations in honey bees and mites. This provided evidence of a Dicer-mediated immune response in honey bees, while the viral small RNA profile in Varroa mites was novel and distinct from the response observed in bees. Overall, we show that viral diversity in honey bee colonies is greater than previously thought, which encourages additional studies of the bee virome on a global scale and which may ultimately improve disease management. IMPORTANCE Honey bee populations have become increasingly susceptible to colony losses due to pathogenic viruses spread by parasitic Varroa mites. To date, 24 viruses have been described in honey bees, with most belonging to the order Picornavirales Collapsing Varroa -infected colonies are often overwhelmed

  4. A Diverse Range of Novel RNA Viruses in Geographically Distinct Honey Bee Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Mang; Buchmann, Gabriele; Blacquière, Tjeerd; Beekman, Madeleine; Ashe, Alyson

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Understanding the diversity and consequences of viruses present in honey bees is critical for maintaining pollinator health and managing the spread of disease. The viral landscape of honey bees (Apis mellifera) has changed dramatically since the emergence of the parasitic mite Varroa destructor, which increased the spread of virulent variants of viruses such as deformed wing virus. Previous genomic studies have focused on colonies suffering from infections by Varroa and virulent viruses, which could mask other viral species present in honey bees, resulting in a distorted view of viral diversity. To capture the viral diversity within colonies that are exposed to mites but do not suffer the ultimate consequences of the infestation, we examined populations of honey bees that have evolved naturally or have been selected for resistance to Varroa. This analysis revealed seven novel viruses isolated from honey bees sampled globally, including the first identification of negative-sense RNA viruses in honey bees. Notably, two rhabdoviruses were present in three geographically diverse locations and were also present in Varroa mites parasitizing the bees. To characterize the antiviral response, we performed deep sequencing of small RNA populations in honey bees and mites. This provided evidence of a Dicer-mediated immune response in honey bees, while the viral small RNA profile in Varroa mites was novel and distinct from the response observed in bees. Overall, we show that viral diversity in honey bee colonies is greater than previously thought, which encourages additional studies of the bee virome on a global scale and which may ultimately improve disease management. IMPORTANCE Honey bee populations have become increasingly susceptible to colony losses due to pathogenic viruses spread by parasitic Varroa mites. To date, 24 viruses have been described in honey bees, with most belonging to the order Picornavirales. Collapsing Varroa-infected colonies are often

  5. A new threat to honey bees, the parasitic phorid fly Apocephalus borealis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Core

    Full Text Available Honey bee colonies are subject to numerous pathogens and parasites. Interaction among multiple pathogens and parasites is the proposed cause for Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD, a syndrome characterized by worker bees abandoning their hive. Here we provide the first documentation that the phorid fly Apocephalus borealis, previously known to parasitize bumble bees, also infects and eventually kills honey bees and may pose an emerging threat to North American apiculture. Parasitized honey bees show hive abandonment behavior, leaving their hives at night and dying shortly thereafter. On average, seven days later up to 13 phorid larvae emerge from each dead bee and pupate away from the bee. Using DNA barcoding, we confirmed that phorids that emerged from honey bees and bumble bees were the same species. Microarray analyses of honey bees from infected hives revealed that these bees are often infected with deformed wing virus and Nosema ceranae. Larvae and adult phorids also tested positive for these pathogens, implicating the fly as a potential vector or reservoir of these honey bee pathogens. Phorid parasitism may affect hive viability since 77% of sites sampled in the San Francisco Bay Area were infected by the fly and microarray analyses detected phorids in commercial hives in South Dakota and California's Central Valley. Understanding details of phorid infection may shed light on similar hive abandonment behaviors seen in CCD.

  6. A New Threat to Honey Bees, the Parasitic Phorid Fly Apocephalus borealis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Core, Andrew; Runckel, Charles; Ivers, Jonathan; Quock, Christopher; Siapno, Travis; DeNault, Seraphina; Brown, Brian; DeRisi, Joseph; Smith, Christopher D.; Hafernik, John

    2012-01-01

    Honey bee colonies are subject to numerous pathogens and parasites. Interaction among multiple pathogens and parasites is the proposed cause for Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), a syndrome characterized by worker bees abandoning their hive. Here we provide the first documentation that the phorid fly Apocephalus borealis, previously known to parasitize bumble bees, also infects and eventually kills honey bees and may pose an emerging threat to North American apiculture. Parasitized honey bees show hive abandonment behavior, leaving their hives at night and dying shortly thereafter. On average, seven days later up to 13 phorid larvae emerge from each dead bee and pupate away from the bee. Using DNA barcoding, we confirmed that phorids that emerged from honey bees and bumble bees were the same species. Microarray analyses of honey bees from infected hives revealed that these bees are often infected with deformed wing virus and Nosema ceranae. Larvae and adult phorids also tested positive for these pathogens, implicating the fly as a potential vector or reservoir of these honey bee pathogens. Phorid parasitism may affect hive viability since 77% of sites sampled in the San Francisco Bay Area were infected by the fly and microarray analyses detected phorids in commercial hives in South Dakota and California's Central Valley. Understanding details of phorid infection may shed light on similar hive abandonment behaviors seen in CCD. PMID:22235317

  7. Mapping Sleeping Bees within Their Nest: Spatial and Temporal Analysis of Worker Honey Bee Sleep

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Barrett Anthony; Stiegler, Martin; Klein, Arno; Tautz, Jürgen

    2014-01-01

    Patterns of behavior within societies have long been visualized and interpreted using maps. Mapping the occurrence of sleep across individuals within a society could offer clues as to functional aspects of sleep. In spite of this, a detailed spatial analysis of sleep has never been conducted on an invertebrate society. We introduce the concept of mapping sleep across an insect society, and provide an empirical example, mapping sleep patterns within colonies of European honey bees (Apis mellifera L.). Honey bees face variables such as temperature and position of resources within their colony's nest that may impact their sleep. We mapped sleep behavior and temperature of worker bees and produced maps of their nest's comb contents as the colony grew and contents changed. By following marked bees, we discovered that individuals slept in many locations, but bees of different worker castes slept in different areas of the nest relative to position of the brood and surrounding temperature. Older worker bees generally slept outside cells, closer to the perimeter of the nest, in colder regions, and away from uncapped brood. Younger worker bees generally slept inside cells and closer to the center of the nest, and spent more time asleep than awake when surrounded by uncapped brood. The average surface temperature of sleeping foragers was lower than the surface temperature of their surroundings, offering a possible indicator of sleep for this caste. We propose mechanisms that could generate caste-dependent sleep patterns and discuss functional significance of these patterns. PMID:25029445

  8. Mapping sleeping bees within their nest: spatial and temporal analysis of worker honey bee sleep.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barrett Anthony Klein

    Full Text Available Patterns of behavior within societies have long been visualized and interpreted using maps. Mapping the occurrence of sleep across individuals within a society could offer clues as to functional aspects of sleep. In spite of this, a detailed spatial analysis of sleep has never been conducted on an invertebrate society. We introduce the concept of mapping sleep across an insect society, and provide an empirical example, mapping sleep patterns within colonies of European honey bees (Apis mellifera L.. Honey bees face variables such as temperature and position of resources within their colony's nest that may impact their sleep. We mapped sleep behavior and temperature of worker bees and produced maps of their nest's comb contents as the colony grew and contents changed. By following marked bees, we discovered that individuals slept in many locations, but bees of different worker castes slept in different areas of the nest relative to position of the brood and surrounding temperature. Older worker bees generally slept outside cells, closer to the perimeter of the nest, in colder regions, and away from uncapped brood. Younger worker bees generally slept inside cells and closer to the center of the nest, and spent more time asleep than awake when surrounded by uncapped brood. The average surface temperature of sleeping foragers was lower than the surface temperature of their surroundings, offering a possible indicator of sleep for this caste. We propose mechanisms that could generate caste-dependent sleep patterns and discuss functional significance of these patterns.

  9. Mapping sleeping bees within their nest: spatial and temporal analysis of worker honey bee sleep.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Barrett Anthony; Stiegler, Martin; Klein, Arno; Tautz, Jürgen

    2014-01-01

    Patterns of behavior within societies have long been visualized and interpreted using maps. Mapping the occurrence of sleep across individuals within a society could offer clues as to functional aspects of sleep. In spite of this, a detailed spatial analysis of sleep has never been conducted on an invertebrate society. We introduce the concept of mapping sleep across an insect society, and provide an empirical example, mapping sleep patterns within colonies of European honey bees (Apis mellifera L.). Honey bees face variables such as temperature and position of resources within their colony's nest that may impact their sleep. We mapped sleep behavior and temperature of worker bees and produced maps of their nest's comb contents as the colony grew and contents changed. By following marked bees, we discovered that individuals slept in many locations, but bees of different worker castes slept in different areas of the nest relative to position of the brood and surrounding temperature. Older worker bees generally slept outside cells, closer to the perimeter of the nest, in colder regions, and away from uncapped brood. Younger worker bees generally slept inside cells and closer to the center of the nest, and spent more time asleep than awake when surrounded by uncapped brood. The average surface temperature of sleeping foragers was lower than the surface temperature of their surroundings, offering a possible indicator of sleep for this caste. We propose mechanisms that could generate caste-dependent sleep patterns and discuss functional significance of these patterns.

  10. Field populations of native Indian honey bees from pesticide intensive agricultural landscape show signs of impaired olfaction

    OpenAIRE

    Priyadarshini Chakrabarti; Santanu Rana; Sreejata Bandopadhyay; Dattatraya G. Naik; Sagartirtha Sarkar; Parthiba Basu

    2015-01-01

    Little information is available regarding the adverse effects of pesticides on natural honey bee populations. This study highlights the detrimental effects of pesticides on honey bee olfaction through behavioural studies, scanning electron microscopic imaging of antennal sensillae and confocal microscopic studies of honey bee brains for calcium ions on Apis cerana, a native Indian honey bee species. There was a significant decrease in proboscis extension response and biologically active free ...

  11. Stingless bees (Melipona scutellaris) learn to associate footprint cues at food sources with a specific reward context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roselino, Ana Carolina; Rodrigues, André Vieira; Hrncir, Michael

    2016-10-01

    Foraging insects leave chemical footprints on flowers that subsequent foragers may use as indicators for recent flower visits and, thus, potential resource depletion. Accordingly, foragers should reject food sources presenting these chemical cues. Contrasting this assumption, experimental studies in stingless bees (Apidae, Meliponini), so far, demonstrated an attractive effect of footprints. These findings lead to doubts about the meaning of these chemical cues in natural foraging contexts. Here, we asked whether foragers of stingless bees (Melipona scutellaris) use footprints according to the previously experienced reward level of visited food sources. Bees were trained to artificial flower patches, at which the reward of a flower either decreased or, alternatively, increased after a visit by a forager. Individuals were allowed a total of nine foraging bouts to the patch, after which their preference for visited or unvisited flowers was tested. In the choice tests, bees trained under the decreasing reward context preferred unvisited flowers, whereas individuals trained under the increasing reward context preferred visited flowers. Foragers without experience chose randomly between visited and unvisited flowers. These results demonstrate that M. scutellaris learns to associate unspecific footprint cues at food sources with differential, specific reward contexts, and uses these chemical cues accordingly for their foraging decisions.

  12. Genetic diversity affects colony survivorship in commercial honey bee colonies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarpy, David R.; vanEngelsdorp, Dennis; Pettis, Jeffrey S.

    2013-08-01

    Honey bee ( Apis mellifera) queens mate with unusually high numbers of males (average of approximately 12 drones), although there is much variation among queens. One main consequence of such extreme polyandry is an increased diversity of worker genotypes within a colony, which has been shown empirically to confer significant adaptive advantages that result in higher colony productivity and survival. Moreover, honey bees are the primary insect pollinators used in modern commercial production agriculture, and their populations have been in decline worldwide. Here, we compare the mating frequencies of queens, and therefore, intracolony genetic diversity, in three commercial beekeeping operations to determine how they correlate with various measures of colony health and productivity, particularly the likelihood of queen supersedure and colony survival in functional, intensively managed beehives. We found the average effective paternity frequency ( m e ) of this population of honey bee queens to be 13.6 ± 6.76, which was not significantly different between colonies that superseded their queen and those that did not. However, colonies that were less genetically diverse (headed by queens with m e ≤ 7.0) were 2.86 times more likely to die by the end of the study when compared to colonies that were more genetically diverse (headed by queens with m e > 7.0). The stark contrast in colony survival based on increased genetic diversity suggests that there are important tangible benefits of increased queen mating number in managed honey bees, although the exact mechanism(s) that govern these benefits have not been fully elucidated.

  13. Honey bee success predicted by landscape composition in Ohio, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sponsler, D B; Johnson, R M

    2015-01-01

    Foraging honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) can routinely travel as far as several kilometers from their hive in the process of collecting nectar and pollen from floral patches within the surrounding landscape. Since the availability of floral resources at the landscape scale is a function of landscape composition, apiculturists have long recognized that landscape composition is a critical determinant of honey bee colony success. Nevertheless, very few studies present quantitative data relating colony success metrics to local landscape composition. We employed a beekeeper survey in conjunction with GIS-based landscape analysis to model colony success as a function of landscape composition in the State of Ohio, USA, a region characterized by intensive cropland, urban development, deciduous forest, and grassland. We found that colony food accumulation and wax production were positively related to cropland and negatively related to forest and grassland, a pattern that may be driven by the abundance of dandelion and clovers in agricultural areas compared to forest or mature grassland. Colony food accumulation was also negatively correlated with urban land cover in sites dominated by urban and agricultural land use, which does not support the popular opinion that the urban environment is more favorable to honey bees than cropland.

  14. Variation morphogeometrics of Africanized honey bees (Apis mellifera in Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorena A. Nunes

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The morphometrics of the honey bee Apis mellifera L., 1758 has been widely studied mainly because this species has great ecological importance, high adaptation capacity, wide distribution and capacity to effectively adapt to different regions. The current study aimed to investigate the morphometric variations of wings and pollen baskets of honey bees Apis mellifera scutellata Lepeletier, 1836 from the five regions in Brazil. We used geometric morphometrics to identify the existence of patterns of variations of shape and size in Africanized honey bees in Brazil 16 years after the classic study with this species, allowing a temporal and spatial comparative analysis using new technological resources to assess morphometrical data. Samples were collected in 14 locations in Brazil, covering the five geographical regions of the country. The shape analysis and multivariate analyses of the wing allowed to observe that there is a geographical pattern among the population of Apis mellifera in Brazil. The geographical variations may be attributed to the large territorial extension of the country in addition to the differences between the bioregions.

  15. Structure of deformed wing virus, a major honey bee pathogen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Škubník, Karel; Nováček, Jiří; Füzik, Tibor; Přidal, Antonín; Paxton, Robert J; Plevka, Pavel

    2017-03-21

    The worldwide population of western honey bees ( Apis mellifera ) is under pressure from habitat loss, environmental stress, and pathogens, particularly viruses that cause lethal epidemics. Deformed wing virus (DWV) from the family Iflaviridae , together with its vector, the mite Varroa destructor , is likely the major threat to the world's honey bees. However, lack of knowledge of the atomic structures of iflaviruses has hindered the development of effective treatments against them. Here, we present the virion structures of DWV determined to a resolution of 3.1 Å using cryo-electron microscopy and 3.8 Å by X-ray crystallography. The C-terminal extension of capsid protein VP3 folds into a globular protruding (P) domain, exposed on the virion surface. The P domain contains an Asp-His-Ser catalytic triad that is, together with five residues that are spatially close, conserved among iflaviruses. These residues may participate in receptor binding or provide the protease, lipase, or esterase activity required for entry of the virus into a host cell. Furthermore, nucleotides of the DWV RNA genome interact with VP3 subunits. The capsid protein residues involved in the RNA binding are conserved among honey bee iflaviruses, suggesting a putative role of the genome in stabilizing the virion or facilitating capsid assembly. Identifying the RNA-binding and putative catalytic sites within the DWV virion structure enables future analyses of how DWV and other iflaviruses infect insect cells and also opens up possibilities for the development of antiviral treatments.

  16. Honey bee success predicted by landscape composition in Ohio, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DB Sponsler

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Foraging honey bees (Apis mellifera L. can routinely travel as far as several kilometers from their hive in the process of collecting nectar and pollen from floral patches within the surrounding landscape. Since the availability of floral resources at the landscape scale is a function of landscape composition, apiculturists have long recognized that landscape composition is a critical determinant of honey bee colony success. Nevertheless, very few studies present quantitative data relating colony success metrics to local landscape composition. We employed a beekeeper survey in conjunction with GIS-based landscape analysis to model colony success as a function of landscape composition in the State of Ohio, USA, a region characterized by intensive cropland, urban development, deciduous forest, and grassland. We found that colony food accumulation and wax production were positively related to cropland and negatively related to forest and grassland, a pattern that may be driven by the abundance of dandelion and clovers in agricultural areas compared to forest or mature grassland. Colony food accumulation was also negatively correlated with urban land cover in sites dominated by urban and agricultural land use, which does not support the popular opinion that the urban environment is more favorable to honey bees than cropland.

  17. Differential diagnosis of the honey bee trypanosomatids Crithidia mellificae and Lotmaria passim.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ravoet, Jorgen; Schwarz, Ryan S; Descamps, Tine; Yañez, Orlando; Tozkar, Cansu Ozge; Martin-Hernandez, Raquel; Bartolomé, Carolina; De Smet, Lina; Higes, Mariano; Wenseleers, Tom; Schmid-Hempel, Regula; Neumann, Peter; Kadowaki, Tatsuhiko; Evans, Jay D; de Graaf, Dirk C

    2015-09-01

    Trypanosomatids infecting honey bees have been poorly studied with molecular methods until recently. After the description of Crithidia mellificae (Langridge and McGhee, 1967) it took about forty years until molecular data for honey bee trypanosomatids became available and were used to identify and describe a new trypanosomatid species from honey bees, Lotmaria passim (Evans and Schwarz, 2014). However, an easy method to distinguish them without sequencing is not yet available. Research on the related bumble bee parasites Crithidia bombi and Crithidia expoeki revealed a fragment length polymorphism in the internal transcribed spacer 1 (ITS1), which enabled species discrimination. In search of fragment length polymorphisms for differential diagnostics in honey bee trypanosomatids, we studied honey bee trypanosomatid cell cultures of C. mellificae and L. passim. This research resulted in the identification of fragment length polymorphisms in ITS1 and ITS1-2 markers, which enabled us to develop a diagnostic method to differentiate both honey bee trypanosomatid species without the need for sequencing. However, the amplification success of the ITS1 marker depends probably on the trypanosomatid infection level. Further investigation confirmed that L. passim is the dominant species in Belgium, Japan and Switzerland. We found C. mellificae only rarely in Belgian honey bee samples, but not in honey bee samples from other countries. C. mellificae was also detected in mason bees (Osmia bicornis and Osmia cornuta) besides in honey bees. Further, the characterization and comparison of additional markers from L. passim strain SF (published as C. mellificae strain SF) and a Belgian honey bee sample revealed very low divergence in the 18S rRNA, ITS1-2, 28S rRNA and cytochrome b sequences. Nevertheless, a variable stretch was observed in the gp63 virulence factor. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. A review of neurohormone GPCRs present in the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster and the honey bee Apis mellifera

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hauser, Frank; Cazzamali, Giuseppe; Williamson, Michael

    2006-01-01

    in the recently sequenced genome from the honey bee Apis mellifera. We found 35 neuropeptide receptor genes in the honey bee (44 in Drosophila) and two genes, coding for leucine-rich repeats-containing protein hormone GPCRs (4 in Drosophila). In addition, the honey bee has 19 biogenic amine receptor genes (21...

  19. 75 FR 12171 - Notice of Availability of a Draft Pest Risk Assessment on Honey Bees Imported from Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-03-15

    ...] Notice of Availability of a Draft Pest Risk Assessment on Honey Bees Imported from Australia AGENCY... evaluation of the pest risks associated with the importation of honey bees from Australia. The draft pest... States from Australia after concerns that exotic honey bee pathogens or parasites may have been...

  20. Inbreeding and building up small populations of stingless bees (Hymenoptera, Apidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paulo Nogueira-Neto

    2002-12-01

    Full Text Available A study of the viability of small populations of Hymenoptera is a matter of importance to gain a better zoological, ethological, genetical and ecological knowledge of these insects, and for conservation purposes, mainly because of the consequences to the survival of colonies of many species of bees, wasps, and ants. Based on the Whiting (1943 principle, Kerr & Vencovski (1982 presented a hypothesis that states that viable populations of stingless bees (Meliponini should have at least 40 colonies to survive. This number was later extended to 44 colonies by Kerr (1985. This would be necessary to avoid any substantial amount of homozygosis in the pair of chromosomic sexual loci, by keeping at least six different sexual gene alleles in a reproductive population. In most cases this would prevent the production of useless diploid males. However, several facts weigh against considering this as a general rule. From 1990 to 2001, 287 colony divisions were made, starting with 28 foundation colonies, in the inbreeding and population experiments with the Meliponini reported here. These experiments constitute the most extensive and longest scientific research ever made with Meliponini bees. In ten different experiments presented here, seven species (one with two subspecies of Meliponini bees were inbred in five localities inside their wide-reaching native habitats, and in two localities far away from these habitats. This was done for several years. On the whole, the number of colonies increased and the loss of colonies over the years was small. In two of these experiments, although these populations were far (1,000 km and 1,200 km from their native habitat, their foundation colonies were multiplied successfuly. It was possible to build up seven strong and three expanding medium populations, starting with one, two, three or even five colonies. However, in six other cases examined here, the Whiting (1943 principle and the hypothesis of Kerr & Vencovski (1982

  1. Classical conditioning of proboscis extension in harnessed Africanized honey bee queens (Apis mellifera L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aquino, Italo S; Abramson, Charles I; Soares, Ademilson E E; Fernandes, Andrea Cardoso; Benbassat, Danny

    2004-06-01

    Experiments are reported on learning in virgin Africanized honey bee queens (Apis mellifera L.). Queens restrained in a "Pavlovian harness" received a pairing of hexanal odor with a 1.8-M feeding of sucrose solution. Compared to explicitly unpaired controls, acquisition was rapid in reaching about 90%. Acquisition was also rapid in queens receiving an unconditioned stimulus of "bee candy" or an unconditioned stimulus administered by worker bees. During extinction the conditioned response declines. The steepest decline was observed in queens receiving an unconditioned stimulus of bee candy. These findings extend previous work on learning of Afrianized honey bee workers to a population of queen bees.

  2. Global information sampling in the honey bee

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Brian R.

    2008-06-01

    Central to the question of task allocation in social insects is how workers acquire information. Patrolling is a curious behavior in which bees meander over the face of the comb inspecting cells. Several authors have suggested it allows bees to collect global information, but this has never been formally evaluated. This study explores this hypothesis by answering three questions. First, do bees gather information in a consistent manner as they patrol? Second, do they move far enough to get a sense of task demand in distant areas of the nest? And third, is patrolling a commonly performed task? Focal animal observations were used to address the first two predictions, while a scan sampling study was used to address the third. The results were affirmative for each question. While patrolling, workers collected information by performing periodic clusters of cell inspections. Patrolling bees not only traveled far enough to frequently change work zone; they often visited every part of the nest. Finally, the majority of the bees in the middle-age caste were shown to move throughout the nest over the course of a few hours in a manner suggestive of patrolling. Global information collection is contrary to much current theory, which assumes that workers respond to local information only. This study thus highlights the nonmutually exclusive nature of various information collection regimes in social insects.

  3. Researches on the Influence of Some Apicol Stimulators Use in the Supplemental Feeding of Honey Bee Colonies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia Patruica

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the results of supplemental feedings use applied to honey bee colonies in autumn. The experiments were carried out between August 20th 2011 and July 2012, in Berini locality, Timiș County (Romania, on 32 Apis meliffera honey bee colonies, divided into four experimental variants. Honey bee families were fed in order to supplement the honey food reserves with sugar syrup containing medicinal plants, or with APIMERA product. During the experimental period, there were being studied the number of brood combs after hibernation, the quantity of broods at the beginning of spring, as well as the quantity of honey and pollen obtained by the studied bee colonies. The best results regarding the development of honey bee colonies in spring were obtained in honey bee colonies for which food reserves have been supplemented with honey combs, followed by the bee colonies fed with sugar syrup containing medicinal plants supplements.

  4. Honey bee-inspired algorithms for SNP haplotype reconstruction problem

    Science.gov (United States)

    PourkamaliAnaraki, Maryam; Sadeghi, Mehdi

    2016-03-01

    Reconstructing haplotypes from SNP fragments is an important problem in computational biology. There have been a lot of interests in this field because haplotypes have been shown to contain promising data for disease association research. It is proved that haplotype reconstruction in Minimum Error Correction model is an NP-hard problem. Therefore, several methods such as clustering techniques, evolutionary algorithms, neural networks and swarm intelligence approaches have been proposed in order to solve this problem in appropriate time. In this paper, we have focused on various evolutionary clustering techniques and try to find an efficient technique for solving haplotype reconstruction problem. It can be referred from our experiments that the clustering methods relying on the behaviour of honey bee colony in nature, specifically bees algorithm and artificial bee colony methods, are expected to result in more efficient solutions. An application program of the methods is available at the following link. http://www.bioinf.cs.ipm.ir/software/haprs/

  5. Anticancer Effects of Geopropolis Produced by Stingless Bees on Canine Osteosarcoma Cells In Vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naiara Costa Cinegaglia

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Geopropolis is produced by indigenous stingless bees from the resinous material of plants, adding soil or clay. Its biological properties have not been investigated, such as propolis, and herein its cytotoxic action on canine osteosarcoma (OSA cells was evaluated. OSA is a primary bone neoplasm diagnosed in dogs being an excellent model in vivo to study human OSA. spOS-2 primary cultures were isolated from the tumor of a dog with osteosarcoma and incubated with geopropolis, 70% ethanol (geopropolis solvent, and carboplatin after 6, 24, 48, and 72 hours. Cell viability was analyzed by the crystal violet method. Geopropolis was efficient against canine OSA cells in a dose- and time-dependent way, leading to a distinct morphology compared to control. Geopropolis cytotoxic action was exclusively due to its constituents since 70% ethanol (its solvent had no effect on cell viability. Carboplatin had no effect on OSA cells. Geopropolis exerted a cytotoxic effect on canine osteosarcoma, and its introduction as a possible therapeutic agent in vivo could be investigated, providing a new contribution to OSA treatment.

  6. A molecular phylogeny of the stingless bee genus Melipona (Hymenoptera: Apidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramírez, Santiago R; Nieh, James C; Quental, Tiago B; Roubik, David W; Imperatriz-Fonseca, Vera L; Pierce, Naomi E

    2010-08-01

    Stingless bees (Meliponini) constitute a diverse group of highly eusocial insects that occur throughout tropical regions around the world. The meliponine genus Melipona is restricted to the New World tropics and has over 50 described species. Melipona, like Apis, possesses the remarkable ability to use representational communication to indicate the location of foraging patches. Although Melipona has been the subject of numerous behavioral, ecological, and genetic studies, the evolutionary history of this genus remains largely unexplored. Here, we implement a multigene phylogenetic approach based on nuclear, mitochondrial, and ribosomal loci, coupled with molecular clock methods, to elucidate the phylogenetic relationships and antiquity of subgenera and species of Melipona. Our phylogenetic analysis resolves the relationship among subgenera and tends to agree with morphology-based classification hypotheses. Our molecular clock analysis indicates that the genus Melipona shared a most recent common ancestor at least approximately 14-17 million years (My) ago. These results provide the groundwork for future comparative analyses aimed at understanding the evolution of complex communication mechanisms in eusocial Apidae. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Anticancer effects of geopropolis produced by stingless bees on canine osteosarcoma cells in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cinegaglia, Naiara Costa; Bersano, Paulo Ricardo Oliveira; Araújo, Maria José Abigail Mendes; Búfalo, Michelle Cristiane; Sforcin, José Maurício

    2013-01-01

    Geopropolis is produced by indigenous stingless bees from the resinous material of plants, adding soil or clay. Its biological properties have not been investigated, such as propolis, and herein its cytotoxic action on canine osteosarcoma (OSA) cells was evaluated. OSA is a primary bone neoplasm diagnosed in dogs being an excellent model in vivo to study human OSA. spOS-2 primary cultures were isolated from the tumor of a dog with osteosarcoma and incubated with geopropolis, 70% ethanol (geopropolis solvent), and carboplatin after 6, 24, 48, and 72 hours. Cell viability was analyzed by the crystal violet method. Geopropolis was efficient against canine OSA cells in a dose- and time-dependent way, leading to a distinct morphology compared to control. Geopropolis cytotoxic action was exclusively due to its constituents since 70% ethanol (its solvent) had no effect on cell viability. Carboplatin had no effect on OSA cells. Geopropolis exerted a cytotoxic effect on canine osteosarcoma, and its introduction as a possible therapeutic agent in vivo could be investigated, providing a new contribution to OSA treatment.

  8. Phylogeography of Partamona rustica (Hymenoptera, Apidae), an Endemic Stingless Bee from the Neotropical Dry Forest Diagonal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miranda, Elder Assis; Batalha-Filho, Henrique; Congrains, Carlos; Carvalho, Antônio Freire; Ferreira, Kátia Maria; Del Lama, Marco Antonio

    2016-01-01

    The South America encompasses the highest levels of biodiversity found anywhere in the world and its rich biota is distributed among many different biogeographical regions. However, many regions of South America are still poorly studied, including its xeric environments, such as the threatened Caatinga and Cerrado phytogeographical domains. In particular, the effects of Quaternary climatic events on the demography of endemic species from xeric habitats are poorly understood. The present study uses an integrative approach to reconstruct the evolutionary history of Partamona rustica, an endemic stingless bee from dry forest diagonal in Brazil, in a spatial-temporal framework. In this sense, we sequenced four mitochondrial genes and genotyped eight microsatellite loci. Our results identified two population groups: one to the west and the other to the east of the São Francisco River Valley (SFRV). These groups split in the late Pleistocene, and the Approximate Bayesian Computation approach and phylogenetic reconstruction indicated that P. rustica originated in the west of the SFRV, subsequently colonising eastern region. Our tests of migration detected reduced gene flow between these groups. Finally, our results also indicated that the inferences both from the genetic data analyses and from the spatial distribution modelling are compatible with historical demographic stability.

  9. Phylogeography of Partamona rustica (Hymenoptera, Apidae, an Endemic Stingless Bee from the Neotropical Dry Forest Diagonal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elder Assis Miranda

    Full Text Available The South America encompasses the highest levels of biodiversity found anywhere in the world and its rich biota is distributed among many different biogeographical regions. However, many regions of South America are still poorly studied, including its xeric environments, such as the threatened Caatinga and Cerrado phytogeographical domains. In particular, the effects of Quaternary climatic events on the demography of endemic species from xeric habitats are poorly understood. The present study uses an integrative approach to reconstruct the evolutionary history of Partamona rustica, an endemic stingless bee from dry forest diagonal in Brazil, in a spatial-temporal framework. In this sense, we sequenced four mitochondrial genes and genotyped eight microsatellite loci. Our results identified two population groups: one to the west and the other to the east of the São Francisco River Valley (SFRV. These groups split in the late Pleistocene, and the Approximate Bayesian Computation approach and phylogenetic reconstruction indicated that P. rustica originated in the west of the SFRV, subsequently colonising eastern region. Our tests of migration detected reduced gene flow between these groups. Finally, our results also indicated that the inferences both from the genetic data analyses and from the spatial distribution modelling are compatible with historical demographic stability.

  10. Foraging behavior of stingless bee Heterotrigona itama (Cockerell, 1918) (Hymenoptera : Apidae : Meliponini)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaapar, Mohd Fahimee; Jajuli, Rosliza; Mispan, Muhamad Radzali; Ghani, Idris Abd

    2018-04-01

    A study to investigate the foraging behavior of Heterotrigona itama (Cockerell, 1918) was conducted on three colonies between January 2016 and June 2016. A digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) with macro lens attached, and action camera (SJCAM) was used to record foraging behavior of H. itama in its colonies for 5 min per hour between 0800 to 1700 h for a day per 6 months. In addition, three data loggers (Watchdog B100 2K) has been installed adjacent to the observation nest for collect temperature and humidity in the study areas. Result showed that the numbers of return foragers was significantly different from January to June also with outgoing forager. The returning forager between hours showed significant different from 8 am to 5 pm also for outgoing forager. The ideal temperature related to foraging behavior for H. itama was 29°C to 32 °C Our finding also, helps to guide researcher to expand the knowledge in foraging behavior by stingless bee as well as encouraging more small farmers to start rearing at least for their own consumption. In addition, these findings also guide the farmers to manage their chemical toxic inside the meliponiculture.

  11. Characterization of antennal sensilla, larvae morphology and olfactory genes of Melipona scutellaris stingless bee.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Washington João de Carvalho

    Full Text Available There is growing evidence in the literature suggesting that caste differentiation in the stingless bee, Melipona scutellaris, and other bees in the genus Melipona, is triggered by environmental signals, particularly a primer pheromone. With the proper amount of food and a chemical stimulus, 25% of females emerge as queens, in agreement with a long-standing "two loci/two alleles model" proposed in the 1950s. We surmised that these larvae must be equipped with an olfactory system for reception of these chemical signals. Here we describe for the first time the diversity of antennal sensilla in adults and the morphology of larvae of M. scutellaris. Having found evidence for putative olfactory sensilla in larvae, we next asked whether olfactory proteins were expressed in larvae. Since the molecular basis of M. scutellaris is still unknown, we cloned olfactory genes encoding chemosensory proteins (CSP and odorant-binding proteins (OBPs using M. scutellaris cDNA template and primers designed on the basis CSPs and OBPs previously reported from the European honeybee, Apis mellifera. We cloned two CSP and two OBP genes and then attempted to express the proteins encoded by these genes. With a recombinant OBP, MscuOBP8, and a combinatorial single-chain variable fragment antibody library, we generated anti-MscuOBP8 monoclonal antibody. By immunohistochemistry we demonstrated that the anti-MscuOBP8 binds specifically to the MscuOBP8. Next, we found evidence that MscuOBP8 is expressed in M. scutellaris larvae and it is located in the mandibular region, thus further supporting the hypothesis of olfactory function in immature stages. Lastly, molecular modeling suggests that MscuOBP8 may function as a carrier of primer pheromones or other ligands.

  12. Characterization of antennal sensilla, larvae morphology and olfactory genes of Melipona scutellaris stingless bee.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Washington João de; Fujimura, Patrícia Tieme; Bonetti, Ana Maria; Goulart, Luiz Ricardo; Cloonan, Kevin; da Silva, Neide Maria; Araújo, Ester Cristina Borges; Ueira-Vieira, Carlos; Leal, Walter S

    2017-01-01

    There is growing evidence in the literature suggesting that caste differentiation in the stingless bee, Melipona scutellaris, and other bees in the genus Melipona, is triggered by environmental signals, particularly a primer pheromone. With the proper amount of food and a chemical stimulus, 25% of females emerge as queens, in agreement with a long-standing "two loci/two alleles model" proposed in the 1950s. We surmised that these larvae must be equipped with an olfactory system for reception of these chemical signals. Here we describe for the first time the diversity of antennal sensilla in adults and the morphology of larvae of M. scutellaris. Having found evidence for putative olfactory sensilla in larvae, we next asked whether olfactory proteins were expressed in larvae. Since the molecular basis of M. scutellaris is still unknown, we cloned olfactory genes encoding chemosensory proteins (CSP) and odorant-binding proteins (OBPs) using M. scutellaris cDNA template and primers designed on the basis CSPs and OBPs previously reported from the European honeybee, Apis mellifera. We cloned two CSP and two OBP genes and then attempted to express the proteins encoded by these genes. With a recombinant OBP, MscuOBP8, and a combinatorial single-chain variable fragment antibody library, we generated anti-MscuOBP8 monoclonal antibody. By immunohistochemistry we demonstrated that the anti-MscuOBP8 binds specifically to the MscuOBP8. Next, we found evidence that MscuOBP8 is expressed in M. scutellaris larvae and it is located in the mandibular region, thus further supporting the hypothesis of olfactory function in immature stages. Lastly, molecular modeling suggests that MscuOBP8 may function as a carrier of primer pheromones or other ligands.

  13. Concentrations of neonicotinoid insecticides in honey, pollen and honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) in central Saskatchewan, Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Codling, Garry; Al Naggar, Yahya; Giesy, John P; Robertson, Albert J

    2016-02-01

    Neonicotinoid insecticides (NIs) and their transformation products were detected in honey, pollen and honey bees, (Apis mellifera) from hives located within 30 km of the City of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. Clothianidin and thiamethoxam were the most frequently detected NIs, found in 68 and 75% of honey samples at mean concentrations of 8.2 and 17.2 ng g(-1) wet mass, (wm), respectively. Clothianidin was also found in >50% of samples of bees and pollen. Concentrations of clothianidin in bees exceed the LD50 in 2 of 28 samples, while for other NIs concentrations were typically 10-100-fold less than the oral LD50. Imidaclorpid was detected in ∼30% of samples of honey, but only 5% of pollen and concentrations were bees. Transformation products of Imidaclorpid, imidaclorpid-Olefin and imidacloprid-5-Hydroxy were detected with greater frequency and at greater mean concentrations indicating a need for more focus on potential effects of these transformation products than the untransformed, active ingredient NIs. Results of an assessment of the potential dietary uptake of NIs from honey and pollen by bees over winter, during which worker bees live longer than in summer, suggested that, in some hives, consumption of honey and pollen during over-wintering might have adverse effects on bees. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Genetic variability of European honey bee, Apis mellifera in mid hills ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    To observe the genetic variability in European honey bee, A. mellifera, PCR was run separately with five primers and analysis of the banding pattern was worked out to investigate the molecular profile of honey bee genotypes collected from different locations having random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) primers.

  15. Octopamine and tyramine modulate the thermoregulatory fanning response in honey bees (Apis mellifera L.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biogenic amines regulate the proximate mechanisms underlying most behavior, including those that contribute to the overall success of complex societies. For honey bees one critical set of behaviors contributing to the welfare of a colony are involved with nest thermoregulation. Worker honey bees co...

  16. The synergistic effects of almond protection fungicides on honey bee (Apis mellifera) forager survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    The honey bee (Apis mellifera) contributes approximately $17 billion annually in pollination services performed for major agricultural crops in the United States including almond, which is completely dependent on honey bee pollination for nut set. Almond growers face challenges to crop productivity ...

  17. Nosema parasitism in honey bees (Apis mellifera) impacts olfactory learning and memory and neurochemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nosema sp. is an internal parasite of the honey bee, Apis mellifera, and one of the leading contributors to colony losses worldwide. This parasite is found in the honey bee midgut, and has profound consequences on the host’s physiology. There are reports that Nosema sp. impairs foraging performance ...

  18. Wintering Map for Honey Bee Colonies in El-Behera Governorate ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The geographical information system (GIS) has been used successfully in many studies to solve apicultural problems. The winter season is considered as a challenge for honey bee colonies due to the cold weather which cause the forfeiture of many colonies. The good wintering of honey bee colonies depends mainly on ...

  19. Xenobiotic effects on intestinal stem cell proliferation in adult honey bee (Apis mellifera L) workers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forkpah, Cordelia; Dixon, Luke R; Fahrbach, Susan E; Rueppell, Olav

    2014-01-01

    The causes of the current global decline in honey bee health are unknown. One major group of hypotheses invokes the pesticides and other xenobiotics to which this important pollinator species is often exposed. Most studies have focused on mortality or behavioral deficiencies in exposed honey bees while neglecting other biological functions and target organs. The midgut epithelium of honey bees presents an important interface between the insect and its environment. It is maintained by proliferation of intestinal stem cells throughout the adult life of honey bees. We used caged honey bees to test multiple xenobiotics for effects on the replicative activity of the intestinal stem cells under laboratory conditions. Most of the tested compounds did not alter the replicative activity of intestinal stem cells. However, colchicine, methoxyfenozide, tetracycline, and a combination of coumaphos and tau-fluvalinate significantly affected proliferation rate. All substances except methoxyfenozide decreased proliferation rate. Thus, the results indicate that some xenobiotics frequently used in apiculture and known to accumulate in honey bee hives may have hitherto unknown physiological effects. The nutritional status and the susceptibility to pathogens of honey bees could be compromised by the impacts of xenobiotics on the maintenance of the midgut epithelium. This study contributes to a growing body of evidence that more comprehensive testing of xenobiotics may be required before novel or existing compounds can be considered safe for honey bees and other non-target species.

  20. Varroa Sensitive Hygiene contributes to naturally selected varroa resistance in honey bees

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Panziera, Delphine; Langevelde, van Frank; Blacquière, Tjeerd

    2017-01-01

    The parasitic mite Varroa destructor is a serious threat for western honey bee colonies and beekeepers are compelled to control it to keep their colonies healthy. Yet, by controlling varroa no resistance to the parasite can evolve. As a trial, honey bee colonies have been left untreated in

  1. Protocols to test the activity of antimicrobial peptides against the honey bee pathogen Paenibacillus larvae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khilnani, Jasmin C; Wing, Helen J

    2015-10-01

    Paenibacillus larvae is the causal agent of the honey bee disease American Foulbrood. Two enhanced protocols that allow the activity of antimicrobial peptides to be tested against P. larvae are presented. Proof of principle experiments demonstrate that the honey bee antimicrobial peptide defensin 1 is active in both assays. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Honey bee (Apis mellifera) nurses do not consume pollens based on their nutritional quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honey bees (Apis mellifera) consume a variety of pollens to meet the majority of their requirements for protein and lipids. Recent work indicates that at both the colony and individual levels, honey bees prefer diets that reflect the proper ratio of nutrients necessary for optimal survival and homeo...

  3. Differential responses to DWV infection in honey bees: A case of tolerance or resistance?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honey bees contend with a variety of abiotic and biotic stressors, and this has led to high and likely unsustainable annual colony mortality. The ectoparasitic mite Varroa destructor is the biggest threat affecting honey bee health in large part because of the viruses that mites vector while feeding...

  4. A diverse range of novel RNA viruses in geographically distinct honey bee populations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Remnant, Emily J.; Shi, Mang; Buchmann, Gabriele; Blacquière, Tjeerd; Holmes, Edward C.; Beekman, Madeleine; Ashe, Alyson

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the diversity and consequences of viruses present in honey bees is critical for maintaining pollinator health and managing the spread of disease. The viral landscape of honey bees (Apis mellifera) has changed dramatically since the emergence of the parasitic mite Varroa destructor,

  5. Chemical communication in the honey bee scarab pest Oplostomus haroldi: role of (Z)-9-Pentacosene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oplostomus haroldi Witte belongs to a unique genus of afro-tropical scarabs that have associations with honey bee colonies, from which they derive vital nutrients. Although the attributes of the honey bee nest impose barriers to communication among nest invaders, this beetle still is able to detect ...

  6. Why does bee health matter? The science surrounding honey bee health concerns and what we can do about it

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spivak, Marla S; Browning, Zac; Goblirsch, Mike; Lee, Katie; Otto, Clint R.; Smart, Matthew; Wu-Smart, Judy

    2017-01-01

    A colony of honey bees is an amazing organism when it is healthy; it is a superorganism in many senses of the word. As with any organism, maintaining a state of health requires cohesiveness and interplay among cells and tissues and, in the case of a honey bee colony, the bees themselves. The individual bees that make up a honey bee colony deliver to the superorganism what it needs: pollen and nectar collected from flowering plants that contain nutrients necessary for growth and survival. Honey bees with access to better and more complete nutrition exhibit improved immune system function and behavioral defenses for fighting off effects of pathogens and pesticides (Evans and Spivak 2010; Mao, Schuler, and Berenbaum 2013; Wahl and Ulm 1983). Sadly, as this story is often told in the headlines, the focus is rarely about what it means for a honey bee colony to be healthy and is instead primarily focused on colony survival rates. Bee colonies are chronically exposed to parasitic mites, viruses, diseases, miticides, pesticides, and poor nutrition, which weaken and make innate defenses insufficient at overcoming these combined stressors. Colonies that are chronically weakened can be even more susceptible to infections and levels of pesticide exposure that might otherwise be innocuous, further promoting a downward spiral of health. Sick and weakened bees diminish the colony’s resiliency, ultimately leading to a breakdown in the social structure, production, efficiency, immunity, and reproduction of the colony, and eventual or sudden colony death.

  7. Olfactory interference during inhibitory backward pairing in honey bees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthieu Dacher

    Full Text Available Restrained worker honey bees are a valuable model for studying the behavioral and neural bases of olfactory plasticity. The proboscis extension response (PER; the proboscis is the mouthpart of honey bees is released in response to sucrose stimulation. If sucrose stimulation is preceded one or a few times by an odor (forward pairing, the bee will form a memory for this association, and subsequent presentations of the odor alone are sufficient to elicit the PER. However, backward pairing between the two stimuli (sucrose, then odor has not been studied to any great extent in bees, although the vertebrate literature indicates that it elicits a form of inhibitory plasticity.If hungry bees are fed with sucrose, they will release a long lasting PER; however, this PER can be interrupted if an odor is presented 15 seconds (but not 7 or 30 seconds after the sucrose (backward pairing. We refer to this previously unreported process as olfactory interference. Bees receiving this 15 second backward pairing show reduced performance after a subsequent single forward pairing (excitatory conditioning trial. Analysis of the results supported a relationship between olfactory interference and a form of backward pairing-induced inhibitory learning/memory. Injecting the drug cimetidine into the deutocerebrum impaired olfactory interference.Olfactory interference depends on the associative link between odor and PER, rather than between odor and sucrose. Furthermore, pairing an odor with sucrose can lead either to association of this odor to PER or to the inhibition of PER by this odor. Olfactory interference may provide insight into processes that gate how excitatory and inhibitory memories for odor-PER associations are formed.

  8. STUDIES OF CHOSEN TOXIC ELEMENTS CONCENTRATION IN MULTIFLOWER BEE HONEY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ewa Popiela

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available 72 544x376 Normal 0 21 false false false  The aim of the study was to determine the bioaccumulation level of chosen toxic elements (Zn, Cu, Pb, As and Cd in multiflower honey collected from Brzeg area. Biological material (honey was mineralized using the microwave technique at an elevated pressure in the microprocessor station of pressure in the type Mars 5. Quantitative analysis of elements (As, Cd, Cu, Pb and Zn was performed by plasma spectrometry method using a Varian ICP-AES apparatus. The presence of toxic elements was determined in examined biological materials. The elements fallowed the fallowing decreasing order with respect to their content of honey: Zn>Cu>Pb>As>Cd. The average concentrations of studied elements observed in multi-flower honey were as follows: 6.24 mg.kg-1 of zinc, 2.75 mg.kg-1 of copper, 0.53, 0.071, 0.042 mg.kg-1of lead, arsenic and cadmium, respectively. Lead was the most problematic in bee honey because its average content exceeded the maximum acceptable concentration. Additionally, this metal concentration was 60% higher in studied samples than allowable standard of lead content.doi:10.5219/134 

  9. Quantifying honey bee mating range and isolation in semi-isolated valleys by DNA microsatellite paternity analysis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Annette Bruun; Palmer, Kellie A.; Chaline, Nicolas

    2005-01-01

    Apis mellifera mellifera, gene flow, honey bee conservation, mating distance, National Park, European black bee, Peak District, polyandry, social insects Udgivelsesdato: JUL......Apis mellifera mellifera, gene flow, honey bee conservation, mating distance, National Park, European black bee, Peak District, polyandry, social insects Udgivelsesdato: JUL...

  10. Non-Specific dsRNA-Mediated Antiviral Response in the Honey Bee

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flenniken, Michelle L.; Andino, Raul

    2013-01-01

    Honey bees are essential pollinators of numerous agricultural crops. Since 2006, honey bee populations have suffered considerable annual losses that are partially attributed to Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). CCD is an unexplained phenomenon that correlates with elevated incidence of pathogens, including RNA viruses. Honey bees are eusocial insects that live in colonies of genetically related individuals that work in concert to gather and store nutrients. Their social organization provides numerous benefits, but also facilitates pathogen transmission between individuals. To investigate honey bee antiviral defense mechanisms, we developed an RNA virus infection model and discovered that administration of dsRNA, regardless of sequence, reduced virus infection. Our results suggest that dsRNA, a viral pathogen associated molecular pattern (PAMP), triggers an antiviral response that controls virus infection in honey bees. PMID:24130869

  11. Establishment of Lactobacillus plantarum strain in honey bee digestive tract monitored using gfp fluorescence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Javorský, P; Fecskeová, L Kolesár; Hrehová, L; Sabo, R; Legáth, J; Pristas, P

    2017-04-26

    Lactic acid bacteria are symbiotic bacteria that naturally reside in the gastrointestinal tract of honey bees. They serve a multitude of functions and are considered beneficial and completely harmless. In our experiments Lactobacillus plantarum strain B35, isolated from honey bee digestive tract, was modified using pAD43-25 plasmid carrying a functional GFP gene sequence (gfpmut3a) and used as a model for monitoring and optimisation of the mode of application. The establishment of this strain in honey bee digestive tract was monitored using GFP fluorescence. Three different modes of oral application of this strain were tested: water suspension of lyophilised bacteria, aerosol application of these bacteria and consumption of sugar honey paste containing the lyophilised lactobacilli. Two days after administration the L. plantarum B35-gfp was present throughout the honey bee digestive tract with 10 4 -10 5 cfu/bee with highest count observed for aerosol application.

  12. Availability of environmental radioactivity to honey bee colonies at Los Alamos

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hakonson, T.E.; Bostick, K.V.

    1976-01-01

    Data are presented on the availability of tritium, cesium 137, and plutonium to honey bee colonies foraging in the environment surrounding the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory. Sources of these radionuclides in the laboratory environs include liquid and atmospheric effluents and buried solid waste. Honey bee colonies were placed in three canyon liquid waste disposal areas and were sampled frequently, along with honey, surface water, and surrounding vegetation, to qualitatively determine the availability of these radionuclides to bees (Apis mellifera) and to identify potential food chain sources of the elements. Tritium concentrations in bee and honey samples from the canyons increased rapidly from initial values of 137 Cs in the environs. The existence of at least three radionuclide sources in the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory (LASL) environs complicates the interpretation of the data. However, it is apparent that honey bees can acquire 3 H, 137 Cs, and Pu from multiple sources in the environs

  13. USDA research and honey bee health

    Science.gov (United States)

    The USDA - Agricultural Research Service Bee Research Laboratory (BRL) is comprised of nine full-time federal employees and a team of 20+ students and collaborators from the U.S., England, Thailand, Spain, and China. The mission of the BRL is to provide innovative tools and insights for building and...

  14. Protein levels and colony development of Africanized and European honey bees fed natural and artificial diets

    OpenAIRE

    Morais, Michelle Manfrini [UNIFESP; Turcatto, Aline Patricia; Pereira, Rogerio Aparecido; Francoy, Tiago Mauricio; Guidugli-Lazzarini, Karina Rosa; Goncalves, Lionel Segui; Almeida, Joyce Mayra Volpini de; Ellis, J. D.; De Jong, David

    2013-01-01

    Pollen substitute diets are a valuable resource for maintaining strong and health honey bee colonies. Specific diets may be useful in one region or country and inadequate or economically unviable in others. We compared two artificial protein diets that had been formulated from locally-available ingredients in Brazil with bee bread and a non-protein sucrose diet. Groups of 100 newly-emerged, adult workers of Africanized honey bees in Brazil and European honey bees in the USA were confined in s...

  15. Captura de enxames de abelhas sem ferrão (Hymenoptera, Apidae, Meliponinae sem destruição de árvores Capturing stingless bee nests (Hymenoptera, Apidae, Meliponinae without destroying the trees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandre Coletto-Silva

    2005-09-01

    Full Text Available No Brasil a criação racional de abelhas sem ferrão é denominada meliponicultura. As abelhas sem ferrão possuem diferentes comportamentos de nidificação, com ninhos internos (cavidades naturais ou não e externos. Um dos principais problemas apresentados na meliponicultura é a captura de uma colônia com o objetivo de iniciar um meliponário sem "destruir as árvores" ou mesmo as próprias colônias durante a captura. O presente trabalho apresenta um método alternativo para captura de colônias de abelhas sem ferrão, especialmente, do gênero Melipona Illiger, 1806, que são as espécies mais utilizadas para produção de mel e pólen, na região Amazônica. O método consiste em abrir uma janela na árvore, coletar o material e fechar a abertura utilizando a resina vegetal conhecida como breu.Meliponiculture is the name for stingless beekeeping in Brazil. Stingless bees have different nest behaviors showing external and internal nests (natural cavities or not. One of the main problems of meliponiculture is the capture of a colony in order to begin a meliponary without destroying trees or the colonies during the capture. A new alternative method for the capture of stingless bee colonies is presented for the genus Melipona Illiger, 1806, which are the species mostly used for producing honey and pollen. The method is to open the tree, collect the colony, and then close the tree with natural resins known as "breu".

  16. Performance of two honey bee subspecies during harsh weather and Acacia gerrardii nectar-rich flow

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Awad Mohamed Awad

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Both climatic factors and bee forage characteristics affect the population size and productivity of honey bee colonies. To our knowledge, no scientific investigation has as yet considered the potential effect of nectar-rich bee forage exposed to drastic subtropical weather conditions on the performance of honey bee colonies. This study investigated the performance of the honey bee subspecies Apis mellifera jemenitica Ruttner (Yemeni and Apis mellifera carnica Pollmann (Carniolan in weather that was hot and dry and in an environment of nectar-rich flora. The brood production, food storage, bee population and honey yield of Yemeni (native and Carniolan (imported colonies on Talh trees (Acacia gerrardii Benth., a nectar-rich, subtropical, and summer bee forage source in Central Arabia were evaluated. Owing to their structural and behavioral adaptations, the Yemeni bees constructed stronger (high population size colonies than the Carniolan bees. Although both groups yielded similar amounts of Talh honey, the Yemeni bees consumed their stored honey rapidly if not timely harvested. A. m. jemenitica has a higher performance than A. m. carnica during extremely hot-dry conditions and A. gerrardii nectar-rich flow.

  17. Measurement of optical activity of honey bee

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz-Gutiérrez, Mauricio; Olivares-Pérez, Arturo; Salgado-Verduzco, Marco Antonio; Ibarra-Torres, Juan Carlos

    2016-03-01

    Optical activity of some substances, such as chiral molecules, often exhibits circular birefringence. Circular birefringence causes rotation of the vibration plane of the plane polarized light as it passes through the substance. In this work we present optical characterization of honey as function of the optical activity when it is placed in a polariscope that consists of a light source and properly arranged polarizing elements.

  18. The distribution of Paenibacillus larvae spores in adult bees and honey and larval mortality, following the addition of American foulbrood diseased brood or spore-contaminated honey in honey bee (Apis mellifera) colonies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindström, Anders; Korpela, Seppo; Fries, Ingemar

    2008-09-01

    Within colony transmission of Paenibacillus larvae spores was studied by giving spore-contaminated honey comb or comb containing 100 larvae killed by American foulbrood to five experimental colonies respectively. We registered the impact of the two treatments on P. larvae spore loads in adult bees and honey and on larval mortality by culturing for spores in samples of adult bees and honey, respectively, and by measuring larval survival. The results demonstrate a direct effect of treatment on spore levels in adult bees and honey as well as on larval mortality. Colonies treated with dead larvae showed immediate high spore levels in adult bee samples, while the colonies treated with contaminated honey showed a comparable spore load but the effect was delayed until the bees started to utilize the honey at the end of the flight season. During the winter there was a build up of spores in the adult bees, which may increase the risk for infection in spring. The results confirm that contaminated honey can act as an environmental reservoir of P. larvae spores and suggest that less spores may be needed in honey, compared to in diseased brood, to produce clinically diseased colonies. The spore load in adult bee samples was significantly related to larval mortality but the spore load of honey samples was not.

  19. The Potential Influence of Bumble Bee Visitation on Foraging Behaviors and Assemblages of Honey Bees on Squash Flowers in Highland Agricultural Ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Zhenghua; Pan, Dongdong; Teichroew, Jonathan; An, Jiandong

    2016-01-01

    Bee species interactions can benefit plant pollination through synergistic effects and complementary effects, or can be of detriment to plant pollination through competition effects by reducing visitation by effective pollinators. Since specific bee interactions influence the foraging performance of bees on flowers, they also act as drivers to regulate the assemblage of flower visitors. We selected squash (Cucurbita pepo L.) and its pollinators as a model system to study the foraging response of honey bees to the occurrence of bumble bees at two types of sites surrounded by a high amount of natural habitats (≥ 58% of land cover) and a low amount of natural habitats (≤ 12% of land cover) in a highland agricultural ecosystem in China. At the individual level, we measured the elapsed time from the departure of prior pollinator(s) to the arrival of another pollinator, the selection of honey bees for flowers occupied by bumble bees, and the length of time used by honey bees to explore floral resources at the two types of sites. At the community level, we explored the effect of bumble bee visitation on the distribution patterns of honey bees on squash flowers. Conclusively, bumble bee visitation caused an increase in elapsed time before flowers were visited again by a honey bee, a behavioral avoidance by a newly-arriving honey bee to select flowers occupied by bumble bees, and a shortened length of time the honey bee takes to examine and collect floral resources. The number of overall bumble bees on squash flowers was the most important factor explaining the difference in the distribution patterns of honey bees at the community level. Furthermore, decline in the number of overall bumble bees on the squash flowers resulted in an increase in the number of overall honey bees. Therefore, our study suggests that bee interactions provide an opportunity to enhance the resilience of ecosystem pollination services against the decline in pollinator diversity.

  20. The Potential Influence of Bumble Bee Visitation on Foraging Behaviors and Assemblages of Honey Bees on Squash Flowers in Highland Agricultural Ecosystems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhenghua Xie

    Full Text Available Bee species interactions can benefit plant pollination through synergistic effects and complementary effects, or can be of detriment to plant pollination through competition effects by reducing visitation by effective pollinators. Since specific bee interactions influence the foraging performance of bees on flowers, they also act as drivers to regulate the assemblage of flower visitors. We selected squash (Cucurbita pepo L. and its pollinators as a model system to study the foraging response of honey bees to the occurrence of bumble bees at two types of sites surrounded by a high amount of natural habitats (≥ 58% of land cover and a low amount of natural habitats (≤ 12% of land cover in a highland agricultural ecosystem in China. At the individual level, we measured the elapsed time from the departure of prior pollinator(s to the arrival of another pollinator, the selection of honey bees for flowers occupied by bumble bees, and the length of time used by honey bees to explore floral resources at the two types of sites. At the community level, we explored the effect of bumble bee visitation on the distribution patterns of honey bees on squash flowers. Conclusively, bumble bee visitation caused an increase in elapsed time before flowers were visited again by a honey bee, a behavioral avoidance by a newly-arriving honey bee to select flowers occupied by bumble bees, and a shortened length of time the honey bee takes to examine and collect floral resources. The number of overall bumble bees on squash flowers was the most important factor explaining the difference in the distribution patterns of honey bees at the community level. Furthermore, decline in the number of overall bumble bees on the squash flowers resulted in an increase in the number of overall honey bees. Therefore, our study suggests that bee interactions provide an opportunity to enhance the resilience of ecosystem pollination services against the decline in pollinator diversity.

  1. Local bumble bee decline linked to recovery of honey bees, drought effects on floral resources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomson, Diane M

    2016-10-01

    Time series of abundances are critical for understanding how abiotic factors and species interactions affect population dynamics, but are rarely linked with experiments and also scarce for bee pollinators. This gap is important given concerns about declines in some bee species. I monitored honey bee (Apis mellifera) and bumble bee (Bombus spp.) foragers in coastal California from 1999, when feral A. mellifera populations were low due to Varroa destructor, until 2014. Apis mellifera increased substantially, except between 2006 and 2011, coinciding with declines in managed populations. Increases in A. mellifera strongly correlated with declines in Bombus and reduced diet overlap between them, suggesting resource competition consistent with past experimental results. Lower Bombus numbers also correlated with diminished floral resources. Declines in floral abundances were associated with drought and reduced spring rainfall. These results illustrate how competition with an introduced species may interact with climate to drive local decline of native pollinators. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  2. Diversity of Stingless Bees (Hymenoptera:Meliponini) Used in Meliponiculture in Colombia; Diversidad de abejas sin aguijon (hymenoptera:meliponini) utilizadas en meliponicultura en Colombia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nates Parra, Guiomar; Rosso Londono, Juan Manuel

    2013-07-01

    There are close to 120 species of native stingless bees in Colombia, many of them with important uses and meanings for diverse social and cultural groups. The stingless beekeeping (meliponiculture) is an activity in process of growth and technification in Latin America and other regions, but there are a little information about their characteristics and development in Colombia. Through information collected by interviews to 75 stingless beekeepers of 16 departments of Colombia, 25 species of stingless bees were identified, grouped in 12 genera. Approximately nine more uncertain species were also found, four new records for the country are presented, and geographical distribution, urban beekeeping and vernacular names reported. The characteristics of most common cultivated genera (Tetragonisca, Melipona, Paratrigona, Scaptotrigona and Nannotrigona) are presented, and the importance of the link between biological and cultural diversity revealed in vernacular names, are discussed. Facing a growing of meliponiculture in the world, some research needs and risks for the conservation and management of the diversity of stingless bees and related knowledge are remarked.

  3. A Look into the Cell: Honey Storage in Honey Bees, Apis mellifera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eyer, Michael; Neumann, Peter; Dietemann, Vincent

    2016-01-01

    Honey bees, Apis species, obtain carbohydrates from nectar and honeydew. These resources are ripened into honey in wax cells that are capped for long-term storage. These stores are used to overcome dearth periods when foraging is not possible. Despite the economic and ecological importance of honey, little is known about the processes of its production by workers. Here, we monitored the usage of storage cells and the ripening process of honey in free-flying A. mellifera colonies. We provided the colonies with solutions of different sugar concentrations to reflect the natural influx of nectar with varying quality. Since the amount of carbohydrates in a solution affects its density, we used computer tomography to measure the sugar concentration of cell content over time. The data show the occurrence of two cohorts of cells with different provisioning and ripening dynamics. The relocation of the content of many cells before final storage was part of the ripening process, because sugar concentration of the content removed was lower than that of content deposited. The results confirm the mixing of solutions of different concentrations in cells and show that honey is an inhomogeneous matrix. The last stage of ripening occurred when cell capping had already started, indicating a race against water absorption. The storage and ripening processes as well as resource use were context dependent because their dynamics changed with sugar concentration of the food. Our results support hypotheses regarding honey production proposed in earlier studies and provide new insights into the mechanisms involved.

  4. A Look into the Cell: Honey Storage in Honey Bees, Apis mellifera.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Eyer

    Full Text Available Honey bees, Apis species, obtain carbohydrates from nectar and honeydew. These resources are ripened into honey in wax cells that are capped for long-term storage. These stores are used to overcome dearth periods when foraging is not possible. Despite the economic and ecological importance of honey, little is known about the processes of its production by workers. Here, we monitored the usage of storage cells and the ripening process of honey in free-flying A. mellifera colonies. We provided the colonies with solutions of different sugar concentrations to reflect the natural influx of nectar with varying quality. Since the amount of carbohydrates in a solution affects its density, we used computer tomography to measure the sugar concentration of cell content over time. The data show the occurrence of two cohorts of cells with different provisioning and ripening dynamics. The relocation of the content of many cells before final storage was part of the ripening process, because sugar concentration of the content removed was lower than that of content deposited. The results confirm the mixing of solutions of different concentrations in cells and show that honey is an inhomogeneous matrix. The last stage of ripening occurred when cell capping had already started, indicating a race against water absorption. The storage and ripening processes as well as resource use were context dependent because their dynamics changed with sugar concentration of the food. Our results support hypotheses regarding honey production proposed in earlier studies and provide new insights into the mechanisms involved.

  5. Introgression of lineage c honey bees into black honey bee populations: a genome-wide estimation using single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPS)

    OpenAIRE

    Henriques, Dora; Chavez-Galarza, Julio; Kryger, Per; Johnston, J. Spencer; De la Rúa, Pilar; Rufino, José; Dall'Olio, Raffaele; Garnery, Lionel; Pinto, M. Alice

    2012-01-01

    The black honey bee, Apis mellifera mellifera L., is probably the honey bee subspecies more threatened by introgression from foreign subspecies, specially lineage C A. m. carnica and A. m. ligustica. In fact, in some areas of its distributional range, intensive beekeeping with foreign subspecies has driven A. m. mellifera populations to nearly replacement. While massive and repeated introductions may lead to loss of native genetic patrimony, a low level of gene flow can also be detrimental be...

  6. Intensively Cultivated Landscape and Varroa Mite Infestation Are Associated with Reduced Honey Bee Nutritional State.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dolezal, Adam G; Carrillo-Tripp, Jimena; Miller, W Allen; Bonning, Bryony C; Toth, Amy L

    2016-01-01

    As key pollinators, honey bees are crucial to many natural and agricultural ecosystems. An important factor in the health of honey bees is the availability of diverse floral resources. However, in many parts of the world, high-intensity agriculture could result in a reduction in honey bee forage. Previous studies have investigated how the landscape surrounding honey bee hives affects some aspects of honey bee health, but to our knowledge there have been no investigations of the effects of intensively cultivated landscapes on indicators of individual bee health such as nutritional physiology and pathogen loads. Furthermore, agricultural landscapes in different regions vary greatly in forage and land management, indicating a need for additional information on the relationship between honey bee health and landscape cultivation. Here, we add to this growing body of information by investigating differences in nutritional physiology between honey bees kept in areas of comparatively low and high cultivation in an area generally high agricultural intensity in the Midwestern United States. We focused on bees collected directly before winter, because overwintering stress poses one of the most serious problems for honey bees in temperate climates. We found that honey bees kept in areas of lower cultivation exhibited higher lipid levels than those kept in areas of high cultivation, but this effect was observed only in colonies that were free of Varroa mites. Furthermore, we found that the presence of mites was associated with lower lipid levels and higher titers of deformed wing virus (DWV), as well as a non-significant trend towards higher overwinter losses. Overall, these results show that mite infestation interacts with landscape, obscuring the effects of landscape alone and suggesting that the benefits of improved foraging landscape could be lost without adequate control of mite infestations.

  7. Intensively Cultivated Landscape and Varroa Mite Infestation Are Associated with Reduced Honey Bee Nutritional State.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam G Dolezal

    Full Text Available As key pollinators, honey bees are crucial to many natural and agricultural ecosystems. An important factor in the health of honey bees is the availability of diverse floral resources. However, in many parts of the world, high-intensity agriculture could result in a reduction in honey bee forage. Previous studies have investigated how the landscape surrounding honey bee hives affects some aspects of honey bee health, but to our knowledge there have been no investigations of the effects of intensively cultivated landscapes on indicators of individual bee health such as nutritional physiology and pathogen loads. Furthermore, agricultural landscapes in different regions vary greatly in forage and land management, indicating a need for additional information on the relationship between honey bee health and landscape cultivation. Here, we add to this growing body of information by investigating differences in nutritional physiology between honey bees kept in areas of comparatively low and high cultivation in an area generally high agricultural intensity in the Midwestern United States. We focused on bees collected directly before winter, because overwintering stress poses one of the most serious problems for honey bees in temperate climates. We found that honey bees kept in areas of lower cultivation exhibited higher lipid levels than those kept in areas of high cultivation, but this effect was observed only in colonies that were free of Varroa mites. Furthermore, we found that the presence of mites was associated with lower lipid levels and higher titers of deformed wing virus (DWV, as well as a non-significant trend towards higher overwinter losses. Overall, these results show that mite infestation interacts with landscape, obscuring the effects of landscape alone and suggesting that the benefits of improved foraging landscape could be lost without adequate control of mite infestations.

  8. Nutrigenomics in honey bees: digital gene expression analysis of pollen's nutritive effects on healthy and varroa-parasitized bees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Parrinello Hughes

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malnutrition is a major factor affecting animal health, resistance to disease and survival. In honey bees (Apis mellifera, pollen, which is the main dietary source of proteins, amino acids and lipids, is essential to adult bee physiological development while reducing their susceptibility to parasites and pathogens. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying pollen's nutritive impact on honey bee health remained to be determined. For that purpose, we investigated the influence of pollen nutrients on the transcriptome of worker bees parasitized by the mite Varroa destructor, known for suppressing immunity and decreasing lifespan. The 4 experimental groups (control bees without a pollen diet, control bees fed with pollen, varroa-parasitized bees without a pollen diet and varroa-parasitized bees fed with pollen were analyzed by performing a digital gene expression (DGE analysis on bee abdomens. Results Around 36, 000 unique tags were generated per DGE-tag library, which matched about 8, 000 genes (60% of the genes in the honey bee genome. Comparing the transcriptome of bees fed with pollen and sugar and bees restricted to a sugar diet, we found that pollen activates nutrient-sensing and metabolic pathways. In addition, those nutrients had a positive influence on genes affecting longevity and the production of some antimicrobial peptides. However, varroa parasitism caused the development of viral populations and a decrease in metabolism, specifically by inhibiting protein metabolism essential to bee health. This harmful effect was not reversed by pollen intake. Conclusions The DGE-tag profiling methods used in this study proved to be a powerful means for analyzing transcriptome variation related to nutrient intake in honey bees. Ultimately, with such an approach, applying genomics tools to nutrition research, nutrigenomics promises to offer a better understanding of how nutrition influences body homeostasis and may help reduce

  9. Nosema ceranae parasitism impacts olfactory learning and memory and neurochemistry in honey bees (Apis mellifera).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gage, Stephanie L; Kramer, Catherine; Calle, Samantha; Carroll, Mark; Heien, Michael; DeGrandi-Hoffman, Gloria

    2018-02-19

    Nosema sp. is an internal parasite of the honey bee, Apis mellifera , and one of the leading contributors to colony losses worldwide. This parasite is found in the honey bee midgut and has profound consequences for the host's physiology. Nosema sp. impairs foraging performance in honey bees, yet, it is unclear whether this parasite affects the bee's neurobiology. In this study, we examined whether Nosema sp. affects odor learning and memory and whether the brains of parasitized bees show differences in amino acids and biogenic amines. We took newly emerged bees and fed them with Nosema ceranae At approximate nurse and forager ages, we employed an odor-associative conditioning assay using the proboscis extension reflex and two bioanalytical techniques to measure changes in brain chemistry. We found that nurse-aged bees infected with N. ceranae significantly outperformed controls in odor learning and memory, suggestive of precocious foraging, but by forager age, infected bees showed deficits in learning and memory. We also detected significant differences in amino acid concentrations, some of which were age specific, as well as altered serotonin, octopamine, dopamine and l-dopa concentrations in the brains of parasitized bees. These findings suggest that N. ceranae infection affects honey bee neurobiology and may compromise behavioral tasks. These results yield new insight into the host-parasite dynamic of honey bees and N. ceranae , as well as the neurochemistry of odor learning and memory under normal and parasitic conditions. © 2018. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  10. Cerumen of Australian stingless bees ( Tetragonula carbonaria): gas chromatography-mass spectrometry fingerprints and potential anti-inflammatory properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massaro, Flavia Carmelina; Brooks, Peter Richard; Wallace, Helen Margaret; Russell, Fraser Donald

    2011-04-01

    Cerumen, or propolis, is a mixture of plant resins enriched with bee secretions. In Australia, stingless bees are important pollinators that use cerumen for nest construction and possibly for colony's health. While extensive research attests to the therapeutic properties of honeybee ( Apis mellifera) propolis, the biological and medicinal properties of Australian stingless bee cerumen are largely unknown. In this study, the chemical and biological properties of polar extracts of cerumen from Tetragonula carbonaria in South East Queensland, Australia were investigated using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analyses and in vitro 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX) cell-free assays. Extracts were tested against comparative (commercial tincture of A. mellifera propolis) and positive controls (Trolox and gallic acid). Distinct GC-MS fingerprints of a mixed diterpenic profile typical of native bee cerumen were obtained with pimaric acid (6.31 ± 0.97%, w/w), isopimaric acid (12.23 ± 3.03%, w/w), and gallic acid (5.79 ± 0.81%, w/w) tentatively identified as useful chemical markers. Characteristic flavonoids and prenylated phenolics found in honeybee propolis were absent. Cerumen extracts from T. carbonaria inhibited activity of 5-LOX, an enzyme known to catalyse production of proinflammatory mediators (IC50 19.97 ± 2.67 μg/ml, mean ± SEM, n = 4). Extracts had similar potency to Trolox (IC50 12.78 ± 1.82 μg/ml), but were less potent than honeybee propolis (IC50 5.90 ± 0.62 μg/ml) or gallic acid (IC50 5.62 ± 0.35 μg/ml, P bee cerumen, which may herald a commercial potential for the Australian beekeeping industry.

  11. Can We Disrupt the Sensing of Honey Bees by the Bee Parasite Varroa destructor?

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    Eliash, Nurit; Singh, Nitin Kumar; Kamer, Yosef; Pinnelli, Govardhana Reddy; Plettner, Erika; Soroker, Victoria

    2014-01-01

    Background The ectoparasitic mite, Varroa destructor, is considered to be one of the most significant threats to apiculture around the world. Chemical cues are known to play a significant role in the host-finding behavior of Varroa. The mites distinguish between bees from different task groups, and prefer nurses over foragers. We examined the possibility of disrupting the Varroa – honey bee interaction by targeting the mite's olfactory system. In particular, we examined the effect of volatile compounds, ethers of cis 5-(2′-hydroxyethyl) cyclopent-2-en-1-ol or of dihydroquinone, resorcinol or catechol. We tested the effect of these compounds on the Varroa chemosensory organ by electrophysiology and on behavior in a choice bioassay. The electrophysiological studies were conducted on the isolated foreleg. In the behavioral bioassay, the mite's preference between a nurse and a forager bee was evaluated. Principal findings We found that in the presence of some compounds, the response of the Varroa chemosensory organ to honey bee headspace volatiles significantly decreased. This effect was dose dependent and, for some of the compounds, long lasting (>1 min). Furthermore, disruption of the Varroa volatile detection was accompanied by a reversal of the mite's preference from a nurse to a forager bee. Long-term inhibition of the electrophysiological responses of mites to the tested compounds was a good predictor for an alteration in the mite's host preference. Conclusions These data indicate the potential of the selected compounds to disrupt the Varroa - honey bee associations, thus opening new avenues for Varroa control. PMID:25226388

  12. Can we disrupt the sensing of honey bees by the bee parasite Varroa destructor?

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    Nurit Eliash

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The ectoparasitic mite, Varroa destructor, is considered to be one of the most significant threats to apiculture around the world. Chemical cues are known to play a significant role in the host-finding behavior of Varroa. The mites distinguish between bees from different task groups, and prefer nurses over foragers. We examined the possibility of disrupting the Varroa--honey bee interaction by targeting the mite's olfactory system. In particular, we examined the effect of volatile compounds, ethers of cis 5-(2'-hydroxyethyl cyclopent-2-en-1-ol or of dihydroquinone, resorcinol or catechol. We tested the effect of these compounds on the Varroa chemosensory organ by electrophysiology and on behavior in a choice bioassay. The electrophysiological studies were conducted on the isolated foreleg. In the behavioral bioassay, the mite's preference between a nurse and a forager bee was evaluated. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We found that in the presence of some compounds, the response of the Varroa chemosensory organ to honey bee headspace volatiles significantly decreased. This effect was dose dependent and, for some of the compounds, long lasting (>1 min. Furthermore, disruption of the Varroa volatile detection was accompanied by a reversal of the mite's preference from a nurse to a forager bee. Long-term inhibition of the electrophysiological responses of mites to the tested compounds was a good predictor for an alteration in the mite's host preference. CONCLUSIONS: These data indicate the potential of the selected compounds to disrupt the Varroa--honey bee associations, thus opening new avenues for Varroa control.

  13. The bacterial communities associated with honey bee (Apis mellifera foragers.

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    Vanessa Corby-Harris

    Full Text Available The honey bee is a key pollinator species in decline worldwide. As part of a commercial operation, bee colonies are exposed to a variety of agricultural ecosystems throughout the year and a multitude of environmental variables that may affect the microbial balance of individuals and the hive. While many recent studies support the idea of a core microbiota in guts of younger in-hive bees, it is unknown whether this core is present in forager bees or the pollen they carry back to the hive. Additionally, several studies hypothesize that the foregut (crop, a key interface between the pollination environment and hive food stores, contains a set of 13 lactic acid bacteria (LAB that inoculate collected pollen and act in synergy to preserve pollen stores. Here, we used a combination of 454 based 16S rRNA gene sequencing of the microbial communities of forager guts, crops, and corbicular pollen and crop plate counts to show that (1 despite a very different diet, forager guts contain a core microbiota similar to that found in younger bees, (2 corbicular pollen contains a diverse community dominated by hive-specific, environmental or phyllosphere bacteria that are not prevalent in the gut or crop, and (3 the 13 LAB found in culture-based studies are not specific to the crop but are a small subset of midgut or hindgut specific bacteria identified in many recent 454 amplicon-based studies. The crop is dominated by Lactobacillus kunkeei, and Alpha 2.2 (Acetobacteraceae, highly osmotolerant and acid resistant bacteria found in stored pollen and honey. Crop taxa at low abundance include core hindgut bacteria in transit to their primary niche, and potential pathogens or food spoilage organisms seemingly vectored from the pollination environment. We conclude that the crop microbial environment is influenced by worker task, and may function in both decontamination and inoculation.

  14. Field populations of native Indian honey bees from pesticide intensive agricultural landscape show signs of impaired olfaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chakrabarti, Priyadarshini; Rana, Santanu; Bandopadhyay, Sreejata; Naik, Dattatraya G.; Sarkar, Sagartirtha; Basu, Parthiba

    2015-07-01

    Little information is available regarding the adverse effects of pesticides on natural honey bee populations. This study highlights the detrimental effects of pesticides on honey bee olfaction through behavioural studies, scanning electron microscopic imaging of antennal sensillae and confocal microscopic studies of honey bee brains for calcium ions on Apis cerana, a native Indian honey bee species. There was a significant decrease in proboscis extension response and biologically active free calcium ions and adverse changes in antennal sensillae in pesticide exposed field honey bee populations compared to morphometrically similar honey bees sampled from low/no pesticide sites. Controlled laboratory experiments corroborated these findings. This study reports for the first time the changes in antennal sensillae, expression of Calpain 1(an important calcium binding protein) and resting state free calcium in brains of honey bees exposed to pesticide stress.

  15. Thermal evidence of the invasion of a stingless bee nest by a mammal

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    S. D. Hilário

    Full Text Available Melipona bicolor, an inhabitant of the Atlantic Rainforest, nidifies in hollows of live or dead trees. In order to study thermoregulation of a nest of this species, a temperature data logger was installed inside a hollow tree. After this, an intruder dug a hole, invaded the nest, and probably consumed its honey, pollen and bees, having remained there during three days. Thermal evidence and its behavior allowed the delimitation of a small number of suspects, wich we analized here. The intruder was a small mammal, predominantly nocturnal, that takes shelter in burrows, probably the yellow armadillo (Euphractus sexcinctus. Other evidence, if collected immediately after invasion, could precisely indicate precisely the species.

  16. Thermal evidence of the invasion of a stingless bee nest by a mammal

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    Hilário S. D.

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Melipona bicolor, an inhabitant of the Atlantic Rainforest, nidifies in hollows of live or dead trees. In order to study thermoregulation of a nest of this species, a temperature data logger was installed inside a hollow tree. After this, an intruder dug a hole, invaded the nest, and probably consumed its honey, pollen and bees, having remained there during three days. Thermal evidence and its behavior allowed the delimitation of a small number of suspects, wich we analized here. The intruder was a small mammal, predominantly nocturnal, that takes shelter in burrows, probably the yellow armadillo (Euphractus sexcinctus. Other evidence, if collected immediately after invasion, could precisely indicate precisely the species.

  17. Toxicity of Selected Acaricides to Honey Bees (Apis mellifera) and Varroa (Varroa destructor Anderson and Trueman) and Their Use in Controlling Varroa within Honey Bee Colonies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregorc, Aleš; Alburaki, Mohamed; Sampson, Blair; Knight, Patricia R; Adamczyk, John

    2018-05-10

    The efficacies of various acaricides in order to control a parasitic mite, the Varroa mite, Varroa destructor , of honey bees, were measured in two different settings, namely, in laboratory caged honey bees and in queen-right honey bee colonies. The Varroa infestation levels before, during, and after the acaricide treatments were determined in two ways, namely: (1) using the sugar shake protocol to count mites on bees and (2) directly counting the dead mites on the hive bottom inserts. The acaricides that were evaluated were coumaphos, tau-fluvalinate, amitraz, thymol, and natural plant compounds (hop acids), which were the active ingredients. The acaricide efficacies in the colonies were evaluated in conjunction with the final coumaphos applications. All of the tested acaricides significantly increased the overall Varroa mortality in the laboratory experiment. Their highest efficiencies were recorded at 6 h post-treatment, except for coumaphos and thymol, which exhibited longer and more consistent activity. In the honey bee colonies, a higher Varroa mortality was recorded in all of the treatments, compared with the natural Varroa mortality during the pretreatment period. The acaricide toxicity to the Varroa mites was consistent in both the caged adult honey bees and workers in the queen-right colonies, although, two of these acaricides, coumaphos at the highest doses and hop acids, were comparatively more toxic to the worker bees.

  18. Nosema ceranae induced mortality in honey bees (Apis mellifera) depends on infection methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milbrath, Meghan O; Xie, Xianbing; Huang, Zachary Y

    2013-09-01

    Nosema ceranae infection can reduce survival of the Western honey bee, Apis mellifera, but experiments examining its virulence have highly variable results. This variation may arise from differences in experimental techniques. We examined survival effects of two techniques: Nosema infection at day 1 without anesthesia and infection at day 5 using CO2 anesthesia. All bees infected with the latter method had poorer survival. Interestingly, these bees also had significantly fewer spores than bees infected without anesthesia. These results indicate that differences in Nosema ceranae-induced mortality in honey bees may be partially due to differences in experimental techniques. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Nest and colony characteristics of three stingless bee species in Vietnam with the first description of the nest of Lisotrigona carpenteri (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Meliponini)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chinh, T.X.; Sommeijer, M.J.; Boot, W.J.; Michener, C.D.

    2005-01-01

    In tropical primary forest and its buffer zones in North Vietnam, nests of three stingless bee species were studied: Lisotrigona carpenteri Engel, Trigona (Tetragonula) laeviceps Smith and Trigona (Lepidotrigona) ventralis Smith. We record nest architecture, adult population, the number of brood

  20. Effects of insemination quantity on honey bee queen physiology.

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    Freddie-Jeanne Richard

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Mating has profound effects on the physiology and behavior of female insects, and in honey bee (Apis mellifera queens, these changes are permanent. Queens mate with multiple males during a brief period in their early adult lives, and shortly thereafter they initiate egg-laying. Furthermore, the pheromone profiles of mated queens differ from those of virgins, and these pheromones regulate many different aspects of worker behavior and colony organization. While it is clear that mating causes dramatic changes in queens, it is unclear if mating number has more subtle effects on queen physiology or queen-worker interactions; indeed, the effect of multiple matings on female insect physiology has not been broadly addressed. Because it is not possible to control the natural mating behavior of queens, we used instrumental insemination and compared queens inseminated with semen from either a single drone (single-drone inseminated, or SDI or 10 drones (multi-drone inseminated, or MDI. We used observation hives to monitor attraction of workers to SDI or MDI queens in colonies, and cage studies to monitor the attraction of workers to virgin, SDI, and MDI queen mandibular gland extracts (the main source of queen pheromone. The chemical profiles of the mandibular glands of virgin, SDI, and MDI queens were characterized using GC-MS. Finally, we measured brain expression levels in SDI and MDI queens of a gene associated with phototaxis in worker honey bees (Amfor. Here, we demonstrate for the first time that insemination quantity significantly affects mandibular gland chemical profiles, queen-worker interactions, and brain gene expression. Further research will be necessary to elucidate the mechanistic bases for these effects: insemination volume, sperm and seminal protein quantity, and genetic diversity of the sperm may all be important factors contributing to this profound change in honey bee queen physiology, queen behavior, and social interactions in the

  1. Transcriptome analysis of the Asian honey bee Apis cerana cerana.

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    Zi Long Wang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The Eastern hive honey bee, Apis cerana cerana is a native and widely bred honey bee species in China. Molecular biology research about this honey bee species is scarce, and genomic information for A. c. cerana is not currently available. Transcriptome and expression profiling data for this species are therefore important resources needed to better understand the biological mechanisms of A. c. cerana. In this study, we obtained the transcriptome information of A. c. cerana by RNA-sequencing and compared gene expression differences between queens and workers of A. c. cerana by digital gene expression (DGE analysis. RESULTS: Using high-throughput Illumina RNA sequencing we obtained 51,581,510 clean reads corresponding to 4.64 Gb total nucleotides from a single run. These reads were assembled into 46,999 unigenes with a mean length of 676 bp. Based on a sequence similarity search against the five public databases (NR, Swissport, GO, COG, KEGG with a cut-off E-value of 10(-5 using BLASTX, a total of 24,630 unigenes were annotated with gene descriptions, gene ontology terms, or metabolic pathways. Using these transcriptome data as references we analyzed the gene expression differences between the queens and workers of A. c. cerana using a tag-based digital gene expression method. We obtained 5.96 and 5.66 million clean tags from the queen and worker samples, respectively. A total of 414 genes were differentially expressed between them, with 189 up-regulated and 225 down-regulated in queens. CONCLUSIONS: Our transcriptome data provide a comprehensive sequence resource for future A. c. cerana study, establishing an important public information platform for functional genomic studies in A. c. cerana. Furthermore, the DGE data provide comprehensive gene expression information for the queens and workers, which will facilitate our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of the different physiological aspects of the two castes.

  2. The paratransgenic potential of Lactobacillus kunkeei in the honey bee Apis mellifera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rangberg, A; Mathiesen, G; Amdam, G V; Diep, D B

    2015-01-01

    The honey bee (Apis mellifera) is a domestic insect of high value to human societies, as a crop pollinator in agriculture and a model animal in scientific research. The honey bee, however, has experienced massive mortality worldwide due to the phenomenon Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), resulting in alarming prospects for crop failure in Europe and the USA. The reasons for CCD are complex and much debated, but several honey bee pathogens are believed to be involved. Paratransgenesis is a Trojan horse strategy, where endogenous microorganisms are used to express effector molecules that antagonise pathogen development. For use in honey bees, paratransgenesis must rely on a set of criteria that the candidate paratransgenic microorganism must fulfil in order to obtain a successful outcome: (1) the candidate must be genetically modifiable to express effector molecules; (2) the modified organism should have no adverse effects on honey bee health upon reintroduction; and (3) it must survive together with other non-pathogenic bee-associated microorganisms. Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) are common gut bacteria in vertebrates and invertebrates, and some have naturally beneficial properties in their host. In the present work we aimed to find a potential paratransgenic candidate within this bacterial group for use in honey bees. Among isolated LAB associated with bee gut microbiota, we found the fructophilic Lactobacillus kunkeei to be the most predominant species during foraging seasons. Four genetically different strains of L. kunkeei were selected for further assessment. We demonstrated (1) that L. kunkeei is transformable; (2) that the transformed cells had no obvious adverse effect on honey bee survival; and (3) that transformed cells survived well in the gut environment of bees upon reintroduction. Our study demonstrates that L. kunkeei fulfils the three criteria for paratransgenesis and can be a suitable candidate for further research on this strategy in honey bees.

  3. Dynamics of Persistent and Acute Deformed Wing Virus Infections in Honey Bees, Apis mellifera

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    Jay D. Evans

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The dynamics of viruses are critical to our understanding of disease pathogenesis. Using honey bee Deformed wing virus (DWV as a model, we conducted field and laboratory studies to investigate the roles of abiotic and biotic stress factors as well as host health conditions in dynamics of virus replication in honey bees. The results showed that temperature decline could lead to not only significant decrease in the rate for pupae to emerge as adult bees, but also an increased severity of the virus infection in emerged bees, partly explaining the high levels of winter losses of managed honey bees, Apis mellifera, around the world. By experimentally exposing adult bees with variable levels of parasitic mite Varroa destructor, we showed that the severity of DWV infection was positively correlated with the density and time period of Varroa mite infestation, confirming the role of Varroa mites in virus transmission and activation in honey bees. Further, we showed that host conditions have a significant impact on the outcome of DWV infection as bees that originate from strong colonies resist DWV infection and replication significantly better than bee originating from weak colonies. The information obtained from this study has important implications for enhancing our understanding of host‑pathogen interactions and can be used to develop effective disease control strategies for honey bees.

  4. Characterizing the Impact of Commercial Pollen Substitute Diets on the Level of Nosema spp. in Honey Bees (Apis mellifera L.)

    OpenAIRE

    Fleming, James C.; Schmehl, Daniel R.; Ellis, James D.

    2015-01-01

    Western honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) populations face declines commonly attributed to pesticide, pathogen, and parasite stress. One way beekeepers combat these stressors is by providing supplemental protein diets to honey bee colonies to ensure adequate colony nutrition. However Nosema spp., a microsporidian parasite of the honey bee, is thought to be associated closely with a colony's nutritional intake, thus possibly negating any benefit the bees otherwise would have received from a nutrit...

  5. A genome-wide signature of positive selection in ancient and recent invasive expansions of the honey bee Apis mellifera

    OpenAIRE

    Zayed, Amro; Whitfield, Charles W.

    2008-01-01

    Apis mellifera originated in Africa and extended its range into Eurasia in two or more ancient expansions. In 1956, honey bees of African origin were introduced into South America, their descendents admixing with previously introduced European bees, giving rise to the highly invasive and economically devastating “Africanized” honey bee. Here we ask whether the honey bee's out-of-Africa expansions, both ancient and recent (invasive), were associated with a genome-wide signature of positive sel...

  6. Cobalt chloride induces metaphase when topically applied to larvae and pupae of the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris (Hymenoptera, Apidae, Meliponini).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ueira-Vieira, C; Tavares, R R; Morelli, S; Pereira, B B; Silva, R P; Torres-Mariano, A R; Kerr, W E; Bonetti, A M

    2013-06-20

    In order to optimize preparations of bee metaphases, we tested cobalt chloride, which has been used as a metaphase inducer in other organisms, such as hamsters and fish. Four microliters of 65 mM cobalt chloride aqueous solution was topically applied to larval and pupal stages of the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris. The cerebral ganglion was removed after treatment and prepared for cytogenetic analysis. Identically manipulated untreated individuals were used as controls. The number of metaphases was increased 3-fold in treated individuals compared to controls. The micronucleus test showed no mutagenic effects of cobalt chloride on M. scutellaris cells. We concluded that cobalt chloride is a metaphase-inducing agent in M. scutellaris, thus being useful for cytogenetic analyses.

  7. Volatile compounds and palynological analysis from pollen pots of stingless bees from the mid-north region of Brazil

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    José de Sousa Lima Neto

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Samburá is the botanical pollen nectar agglutinated by salivary secretions of bees. Stingless bee pollen samples were collected in three periods of the year in Monsenhor Gil town, PI, Brazil, for extraction of volatile constituents by different techniques, analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS and the palynological analysis used to identify the dominant pollen. Among the volatile compounds identified, kaur-16-ene, methyl and ethyl hexadecanoate, methyl linoleate and heneicosane were identified more frequently in the studied parameters: period of sample collection and extraction techniques used. The palynological analysis identified the pollen of Mimosa caesalpiniifolia Benth. as the dominant pollen in all samples studied.

  8. Foraging Activity in Plebeia remota, a Stingless Bees Species, Is Influenced by the Reproductive State of a Colony

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    Patrícia Nunes-Silva

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Colonies of the Brazilian stingless bee Plebeia remota show a reproductive diapause in autumn and winter. Therefore, they present two distinct reproductive states, during which colony needs are putatively different. Consequently, foraging should be adapted to the different needs. We recorded the foraging activity of two colonies for 30 days in both phases. Indeed, it presented different patterns during the two phases. In the reproductive diapause, the resource predominantly collected by the foragers was nectar. The majority of the bees were nectar foragers, and the peak of collecting activity occurred around noon. Instead, in the reproductive phase, the predominantly collected resource was pollen, and the peak of activity occurred around 10:00 am. Although the majority of the foragers were not specialized in this phase, there were a larger number of pollen foragers compared to the phase of reproductive diapause. The temperature and relative humidity also influenced the foraging activity.

  9. Divergent forms of endoplasmic reticulum stress trigger a robust unfolded protein response in honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, Brittany A; Hooks, Katarzyna B; McKinstry, Mia; Snow, Jonathan W

    2016-03-01

    Honey bee colonies in the United States have suffered from an increased rate of die-off in recent years, stemming from a complex set of interacting stresses that remain poorly described. While we have some understanding of the physiological stress responses in the honey bee, our molecular understanding of honey bee cellular stress responses is incomplete. Thus, we sought to identify and began functional characterization of the components of the UPR in honey bees. The IRE1-dependent splicing of the mRNA for the transcription factor Xbp1, leading to translation of an isoform with more transactivation potential, represents the most conserved of the UPR pathways. Honey bees and other Apoidea possess unique features in the Xbp1 mRNA splice site, which we reasoned could have functional consequences for the IRE1 pathway. However, we find robust induction of target genes upon UPR stimulation. In addition, the IRE1 pathway activation, as assessed by splicing of Xbp1 mRNA upon UPR, is conserved. By providing foundational knowledge about the UPR in the honey bee and the relative sensitivity of this species to divergent stresses, this work stands to improve our understanding of the mechanistic underpinnings of honey bee health and disease. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Impact of Thiamethoxam on Honey Bee Queen (Apis mellifera carnica) Reproductive Morphology and Physiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gajger, Ivana Tlak; Sakač, Martina; Gregorc, Aleš

    2017-09-01

    High honey bee losses around the world have been linked in part by the regular use of neonicotinoids in agriculture. In light of the current situation, the aim of this study was to investigate the effects of thiamethoxam on the development of the reproductive system and physiology in the honey bee queen. Two experimental groups of honey bee queen larvae were treated with thiamethoxam during artificial rearing, applied via artificial feed in two cycles. In the first rearing cycle, honey bee larvae received a single treatment dose (4.28 ng thiamethoxam/queen larva on the 4th day after larvae grafting in artificial queen cells), while the second honey bee queen rearing cycle received a double treatment dose (total of 8.56 ng thiamethoxam/queen larva on the 4th and 5th day after larvae grafting in artificial queen cells). After emerging, queens were anesthetized and weighed, and after mating with drones were anesthetized, weighed, and sectioned. Ovary mass and number of stored sperm were determined. Body weight differed between untreated and treated honey bee queens. The results also show a decrease in the number of sperm within honey bee queen spermathecae that received the double thiamethoxam dose.

  11. ECOLOGICAL IMPACT ON NATIVE BEES BY THE INVASIVE AFRICANIZED HONEY BEE

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    DAVID ROUBIK

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Very little effort has been made to investigate bee population dynamics among intact wilderness areas. The presence of newly-arrived feral Africanized honey bee (AHB, Apis mellifera (Apidae, populations was studied for 10-17 years in areas previously with few or no escaped European apiary honey bees. Here I describe and interpret the major results from studies in three neotropical forests: French Guiana, Panama and Yucatan, Mexico (5° to 19° N. latitude. The exotic Africanized honey bees did not produce a negative effect on native bees, including species that were solitary or highly eusocial. Major differences over time were found in honey bee abundance on flowers near habitat experiencing the greatest degree of disturbance, compared to deep forest areas. At the population level, sampled at nest blocks, or at flower patches, or at light traps, there was no sudden decline in bees after AHB arrival, and relatively steady or sinusoidal population dynamics. However, the native bees shifted their foraging time or floral species. A principal conclusion is that such competition is silent, in floristically rich habitats, because bees compensate behaviorally for competition. Other factors limit their populations. Key words: Africanized honey bee, native bees, competition, population dynamics, neotropical forests RESUMEN Pocos estudios han considerado la dinámica de poblaciones de abejas en bosques o hábitats no alterados por el hombre. La presencia de abejas silvestres Africanizadas de Apis mellifera (Apidae fue estudiado por 10-17 años en áreas previamente sin esta especie. Aquí presento e interpreto resultados de tres bosques neotropicales: Guyana Francesa, Panamá y Yucatán, México (5° a 19° N. latitud. La abeja Africanizada exótica no produjo efecto negativo en las abejas nativas, incluyendo especies altamente sociales y solitarias. Diferencias mayores a través del tiempo fueron encontradas en la abundancia de las abejas de miel

  12. Kiwifruit Flower Odor Perception and Recognition by Honey Bees, Apis mellifera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Twidle, Andrew M; Mas, Flore; Harper, Aimee R; Horner, Rachael M; Welsh, Taylor J; Suckling, David M

    2015-06-17

    Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from male and female kiwifruit (Actinidia deliciosa 'Hayward') flowers were collected by dynamic headspace sampling. Honey bee (Apis mellifera) perception of the flower VOCs was tested using gas chromatography coupled to electroantennogram detection. Honey bees consistently responded to six compounds present in the headspace of female kiwifruit flowers and five compounds in the headspace of male flowers. Analysis of the floral volatiles by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and microscale chemical derivatization showed the compounds to be nonanal, 2-phenylethanol, 4-oxoisophorone, (3E,6E)-α-farnesene, (6Z,9Z)-heptadecadiene, and (8Z)-heptadecene. Bees were then trained via olfactory conditioning of the proboscis extension response (PER) to synthetic mixtures of these compounds using the ratios present in each flower type. Honey bees trained to the synthetic mixtures showed a high response to the natural floral extracts, indicating that these may be the key compounds for honey bee perception of kiwifruit flower odor.

  13. Learning in the Africanized honey bee: Apis mellifera L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abramson, C I; Aquino, I S; Silva, M C; Price, J M

    1997-09-01

    Several series of experiments are reported that investigate learning in the Africanized honey bee. In the first series, classical conditioning of proboscis extension was studied by confining bees to small metal tubes where they received pairings of an odor with a 3-s feeding of sucrose. After a number of odor-sucrose pairings, the bees began to extend their proboscis to the odor. Controls include Unpaired, Discrimination, and Pseudoconditioning Groups. This technique was used to look at conditioning to a light CS, and to the odors of beeswax, geraniol, citral, and hexanal. The results indicate that acquisition was best when sucrose was paired with the odor of beeswax. Conditioning to the remaining odors was roughly similar, but acquisition did not occur using a light. In a second series of experiments, odors were no longer followed by sucrose feedings and the conditioned response slowly disappeared. With the exception of geraniol as a CS, this extinction effect did not occur if the animals continued to be fed on an unpaired schedule. In a third series of experiments, conditioned inhibition was demonstrated when geraniol was used as conditioned stimuli, but no effect was found when the odors of hexanal, citral and wax were used. In a fourth series of experiments, unrestrained bees flew back and forth from the laboratory to the hive, where they were taught to distinguish targets based on color and odor. With this technique, color and odor discrimination in the Africanized bees was demonstrated. In addition, it was found that more intruder bees visited the experimental station when the stimuli used were olfactory rather than visual.

  14. Bee++: An Object-Oriented, Agent-Based Simulator for Honey Bee Colonies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew Betti

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available We present a model and associated simulation package (www.beeplusplus.ca to capture the natural dynamics of a honey bee colony in a spatially-explicit landscape, with temporally-variable, weather-dependent parameters. The simulation tracks bees of different ages and castes, food stores within the colony, pollen and nectar sources and the spatial position of individual foragers outside the hive. We track explicitly the intake of pesticides in individual bees and their ability to metabolize these toxins, such that the impact of sub-lethal doses of pesticides can be explored. Moreover, pathogen populations (in particular, Nosema apis, Nosema cerenae and Varroa mites have been included in the model and may be introduced at any time or location. The ability to study interactions among pesticides, climate, biodiversity and pathogens in this predictive framework should prove useful to a wide range of researchers studying honey bee populations. To this end, the simulation package is written in open source, object-oriented code (C++ and can be easily modified by the user. Here, we demonstrate the use of the model by exploring the effects of sub-lethal pesticide exposure on the flight behaviour of foragers.

  15. Social Reinforcement Delays in Free-Flying Honey Bees (Apis mellifera L.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craig, David Philip Arthur; Grice, James W.; Varnon, Chris A.; Gibson, B.; Sokolowski, Michel B. C.; Abramson, Charles I.

    2012-01-01

    Free-flying honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) reactions were observed when presented with varying schedules of post-reinforcement delays of 0 s, 300 s, or 600 s. We measured inter-visit-interval, response length, inter-response-time, and response rate. Honey bees exposed to these post-reinforcement delay intervals exhibit one of several patterns compared to groups not encountering delays, and had longer inter-visit-intervals. We observed no group differences in inter-response time. Honey bees with higher response rates tended to not finish the experiment. The removal of the delay intervals increased response rates for those subjects that completed the trials. PMID:23056425

  16. Bees' Honey Attenuation of Metanil-Yellow-Induced Hepatotoxicity in Rats

    OpenAIRE

    Al-Malki, Abdulrahman L.; Sayed, Ahmed Amir Radwan

    2013-01-01

    The present study aims to investigate the protective effect of bees' honey against metanil-yellow-induced hepatotoxicity in rats. Rats were divided into 7 groups: control group; three groups treated with 50, 100, and 200?mg/kg metanil yellow, and three groups treated with metanil yellow plus 2.5?mg ? kg?1 ? day?1 bees' honey for 8 weeks. The obtained data showed that the antioxidant/anti-inflammatory activity of bees' honey reduced the oxidative stress in the liver tissue and downregulated th...

  17. An Improved Marriage in Honey Bees Optimization Algorithm for Single Objective Unconstrained Optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuksel Celik

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Marriage in honey bees optimization (MBO is a metaheuristic optimization algorithm developed by inspiration of the mating and fertilization process of honey bees and is a kind of swarm intelligence optimizations. In this study we propose improved marriage in honey bees optimization (IMBO by adding Levy flight algorithm for queen mating flight and neighboring for worker drone improving. The IMBO algorithm’s performance and its success are tested on the well-known six unconstrained test functions and compared with other metaheuristic optimization algorithms.

  18. Sepsis and Hemocyte Loss in Honey Bees (Apis mellifera) Infected with Serratia marcescens Strain Sicaria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burritt, Nancy L; Foss, Nicole J; Neeno-Eckwall, Eric C; Church, James O; Hilger, Anna M; Hildebrand, Jacob A; Warshauer, David M; Perna, Nicole T; Burritt, James B

    2016-01-01

    Global loss of honey bee colonies is threatening the human food supply. Diverse pathogens reduce honey bee hardiness needed to sustain colonies, especially in winter. We isolated a free-living Gram negative bacillus from hemolymph of worker honey bees (Apis mellifera) found separated from winter clusters. In some hives, greater than 90% of the dying bees detached from the winter cluster were found to contain this bacterium in their hemolymph. Throughout the year, the same organism was rarely found in bees engaged in normal hive activities, but was detected in about half of Varroa destructor mites obtained from colonies that housed the septic bees. Flow cytometry of hemolymph from septic bees showed a significant reduction of plasmatocytes and other types of hemocytes. Interpretation of the16S rRNA sequence of the bacterium indicated that it belongs to the Serratia genus of Gram-negative Gammaproteobacteria, which has not previously been implicated as a pathogen of adult honey bees. Complete genome sequence analysis of the bacterium supported its classification as a novel strain of Serratia marcescens, which was designated as S. marcescens strain sicaria (Ss1). When compared with other strains of S. marcescens, Ss1 demonstrated several phenotypic and genetic differences, including 65 genes not previously found in other Serratia genomes. Some of the unique genes we identified in Ss1 were related to those from bacterial insect pathogens and commensals. Recovery of this organism extends a complex pathosphere of agents which may contribute to failure of honey bee colonies.

  19. Hemocyte-mediated phagocytosis differs between honey bee (Apis mellifera worker castes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Marit Hystad

    Full Text Available Honey bees as other insects rely on the innate immune system for protection against diseases. The innate immune system includes the circulating hemocytes (immune cells that clear pathogens from hemolymph (blood by phagocytosis, nodulation or encapsulation. Honey bee hemocyte numbers have been linked to hemolymph levels of vitellogenin. Vitellogenin is a multifunctional protein with immune-supportive functions identified in a range of species, including the honey bee. Hemocyte numbers can increase via mitosis, and this recruitment process can be important for immune system function and maintenance. Here, we tested if hemocyte mediated phagocytosis differs among the physiologically different honey bee worker castes (nurses, foragers and winter bees, and study possible interactions with vitellogenin and hemocyte recruitment. To this end, we adapted phagocytosis assays, which-together with confocal microscopy and flow cytometry-allow qualitative and quantitative assessment of hemocyte performance. We found that nurses are more efficient in phagocytic uptake than both foragers and winter bees. We detected vitellogenin within the hemocytes, and found that winter bees have the highest numbers of vitellogenin-positive hemocytes. Connections between phagocytosis, hemocyte-vitellogenin and mitosis were worker caste dependent. Our results demonstrate that the phagocytic performance of immune cells differs significantly between honey bee worker castes, and support increased immune competence in nurses as compared to forager bees. Our data, moreover, provides support for roles of vitellogenin in hemocyte activity.

  20. Hemocyte-mediated phagocytosis differs between honey bee (Apis mellifera) worker castes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hystad, Eva Marit; Salmela, Heli; Amdam, Gro Vang; Münch, Daniel

    2017-01-01

    Honey bees as other insects rely on the innate immune system for protection against diseases. The innate immune system includes the circulating hemocytes (immune cells) that clear pathogens from hemolymph (blood) by phagocytosis, nodulation or encapsulation. Honey bee hemocyte numbers have been linked to hemolymph levels of vitellogenin. Vitellogenin is a multifunctional protein with immune-supportive functions identified in a range of species, including the honey bee. Hemocyte numbers can increase via mitosis, and this recruitment process can be important for immune system function and maintenance. Here, we tested if hemocyte mediated phagocytosis differs among the physiologically different honey bee worker castes (nurses, foragers and winter bees), and study possible interactions with vitellogenin and hemocyte recruitment. To this end, we adapted phagocytosis assays, which-together with confocal microscopy and flow cytometry-allow qualitative and quantitative assessment of hemocyte performance. We found that nurses are more efficient in phagocytic uptake than both foragers and winter bees. We detected vitellogenin within the hemocytes, and found that winter bees have the highest numbers of vitellogenin-positive hemocytes. Connections between phagocytosis, hemocyte-vitellogenin and mitosis were worker caste dependent. Our results demonstrate that the phagocytic performance of immune cells differs significantly between honey bee worker castes, and support increased immune competence in nurses as compared to forager bees. Our data, moreover, provides support for roles of vitellogenin in hemocyte activity.

  1. Differential gene expression of two extreme honey bee (Apis mellifera) colonies showing varroa tolerance and susceptibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, S; Robertson, T; Mostajeran, M; Robertson, A J; Qiu, X

    2016-06-01

    Varroa destructor, an ectoparasitic mite of honey bees (Apis mellifera), is the most serious pest threatening the apiculture industry. In our honey bee breeding programme, two honey bee colonies showing extreme phenotypes for varroa tolerance/resistance (S88) and susceptibility (G4) were identified by natural selection from a large gene pool over a 6-year period. To investigate potential defence mechanisms for honey bee tolerance to varroa infestation, we employed DNA microarray and real time quantitative (PCR) analyses to identify differentially expressed genes in the tolerant and susceptible colonies at pupa and adult stages. Our results showed that more differentially expressed genes were identified in the tolerant bees than in bees from the susceptible colony, indicating that the tolerant colony showed an increased genetic capacity to respond to varroa mite infestation. In both colonies, there were more differentially expressed genes identified at the pupa stage than at the adult stage, indicating that pupa bees are more responsive to varroa infestation than adult bees. Genes showing differential expression in the colony phenotypes were categorized into several groups based on their molecular functions, such as olfactory signalling, detoxification processes, exoskeleton formation, protein degradation and long-chain fatty acid metabolism, suggesting that these biological processes play roles in conferring varroa tolerance to naturally selected colonies. Identification of differentially expressed genes between the two colony phenotypes provides potential molecular markers for selecting and breeding varroa-tolerant honey bees. © 2016 The Royal Entomological Society.

  2. Evaluation of cage designs and feeding regimes for honey bee (Hymenoptera: Apidae) laboratory experiments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Shao Kang; Csaki, Tamas; Doublet, Vincent; Dussaubat, Claudia; Evans, Jay D; Gajda, Anna M; Gregorc, Alex; Hamilton, Michele C; Kamler, Martin; Lecocq, Antoine; Muz, Mustafa N; Neumann, Peter; Ozkirim, Asli; Schiesser, Aygün; Sohr, Alex R; Tanner, Gina; Tozkar, Cansu Ozge; Williams, Geoffrey R; Wu, Lyman; Zheng, Huoqing; Chen, Yan Ping

    2014-02-01

    The aim of this study was to improve cage systems for maintaining adult honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) workers under in vitro laboratory conditions. To achieve this goal, we experimentally evaluated the impact of different cages, developed by scientists of the international research network COLOSS (Prevention of honey bee COlony LOSSes), on the physiology and survival of honey bees. We identified three cages that promoted good survival of honey bees. The bees from cages that exhibited greater survival had relatively lower titers of deformed wing virus, suggesting that deformed wing virus is a significant marker reflecting stress level and health status of the host. We also determined that a leak- and drip-proof feeder was an integral part of a cage system and a feeder modified from a 20-ml plastic syringe displayed the best result in providing steady food supply to bees. Finally, we also demonstrated that the addition of protein to the bees' diet could significantly increase the level ofvitellogenin gene expression and improve bees' survival. This international collaborative study represents a critical step toward improvement of cage designs and feeding regimes for honey bee laboratory experiments.

  3. Sepsis and Hemocyte Loss in Honey Bees (Apis mellifera) Infected with Serratia marcescens Strain Sicaria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burritt, Nancy L.; Foss, Nicole J.; Neeno-Eckwall, Eric C.; Church, James O.; Hildebrand, Jacob A.; Warshauer, David M.; Perna, Nicole T.; Burritt, James B.

    2016-01-01

    Global loss of honey bee colonies is threatening the human food supply. Diverse pathogens reduce honey bee hardiness needed to sustain colonies, especially in winter. We isolated a free-living Gram negative bacillus from hemolymph of worker honey bees (Apis mellifera) found separated from winter clusters. In some hives, greater than 90% of the dying bees detached from the winter cluster were found to contain this bacterium in their hemolymph. Throughout the year, the same organism was rarely found in bees engaged in normal hive activities, but was detected in about half of Varroa destructor mites obtained from colonies that housed the septic bees. Flow cytometry of hemolymph from septic bees showed a significant reduction of plasmatocytes and other types of hemocytes. Interpretation of the16S rRNA sequence of the bacterium indicated that it belongs to the Serratia genus of Gram-negative Gammaproteobacteria, which has not previously been implicated as a pathogen of adult honey bees. Complete genome sequence analysis of the bacterium supported its classification as a novel strain of Serratia marcescens, which was designated as S. marcescens strain sicaria (Ss1). When compared with other strains of S. marcescens, Ss1 demonstrated several phenotypic and genetic differences, including 65 genes not previously found in other Serratia genomes. Some of the unique genes we identified in Ss1 were related to those from bacterial insect pathogens and commensals. Recovery of this organism extends a complex pathosphere of agents which may contribute to failure of honey bee colonies. PMID:28002470

  4. Detoxification mechanisms of honey bees (Apis mellifera) resulting in tolerance of dietary nicotine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    du Rand, Esther E; Smit, Salome; Beukes, Mervyn; Apostolides, Zeno; Pirk, Christian W W; Nicolson, Susan W

    2015-07-02

    Insecticides are thought to be among the major factors contributing to current declines in bee populations. However, detoxification mechanisms in healthy, unstressed honey bees are poorly characterised. Alkaloids are naturally encountered in pollen and nectar, and we used nicotine as a model compound to identify the mechanisms involved in detoxification processes in honey bees. Nicotine and neonicotinoids have similar modes of action in insects. Our metabolomic and proteomic analyses show active detoxification of nicotine in bees, associated with increased energetic investment and also antioxidant and heat shock responses. The increased energetic investment is significant in view of the interactions of pesticides with diseases such as Nosema spp which cause energetic stress and possible malnutrition. Understanding how healthy honey bees process dietary toxins under unstressed conditions will help clarify how pesticides, alone or in synergy with other stress factors, lead to declines in bee vitality.

  5. Foraging pattern and harvesting of resources of subterranean stingless bee Geotrigona subterranea (Friese, 1901 (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Meliponini

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando Mendes Barbosa

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Flight activity of bees is influenced both by environmental factors and by internal condition of the colonies. Information about external activity of bees is very important, because it provides data of the species biology, supplying subsidies for the use of these insects in the pollination of crops. The present work aim to evaluate the flight activity of Geotrigona subterranea (Friese, 1901 (Hymenoptera: Apidae in natural environment. This study was performed on the Instituto Federal do Norte de Minas Gerais, in the municipality Januária, Minas Gerais State. Two natural nests were observed. The activities of bees of the colonies were recorded three days each month, during the period of December 2011 to November 2012, totaling 924 observations. It was recorded the number of bees leaving and entering the nest, and the type of material transported by them for ten minutes each hour from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. The bees entered the colony carrying pollen, resin, detritus and also without apparent material. The bees began external activities by 6 a.m. at 20°C and finished at 6 p.m. at 28.8°C. The peak of activity of G. subterranea occurs on schedule from 1 to 2 p.m. Even though G. subterranea makes their nests in underground, their foraging activities are very similar to others stingless bee species that usually nest on tree cavities or aerial places. This indicate that despite their particular nesting way the external factors as climatic ones will significantly modulate their foraging pattern in a daily and seasonal way.

  6. Honey bee protein atlas at organ-level resolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Queenie W T; Chan, Man Yi; Logan, Michelle; Fang, Yuan; Higo, Heather; Foster, Leonard J

    2013-11-01

    Genome sequencing has provided us with gene lists but cannot tell us where and how their encoded products work together to support life. Complex organisms rely on differential expression of subsets of genes/proteins in organs and tissues, and, in concert, evolved to their present state as they function together to improve an organism's overall reproductive fitness. Proteomics studies of individual organs help us understand their basic functions, but this reductionist approach misses the larger context of the whole organism. This problem could be circumvented if all the organs in an organism were comprehensively studied by the same methodology and analyzed together. Using honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) as a model system, we report here an initial whole proteome of a complex organism, measuring 29 different organ/tissue types among the three honey bee castes: queen, drone, and worker. The data reveal that, e.g., workers have a heightened capacity to deal with environmental toxins and queens have a far more robust pheromone detection system than their nestmates. The data also suggest that workers altruistically sacrifice not only their own reproductive capacity but also their immune potential in favor of their queen. Finally, organ-level resolution of protein expression offers a systematic insight into how organs may have developed.

  7. Exceptionally high levels of recombination across the honey bee genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beye, Martin; Gattermeier, Irene; Hasselmann, Martin; Gempe, Tanja; Schioett, Morten; Baines, John F; Schlipalius, David; Mougel, Florence; Emore, Christine; Rueppell, Olav; Sirviö, Anu; Guzmán-Novoa, Ernesto; Hunt, Greg; Solignac, Michel; Page, Robert E

    2006-11-01

    The first draft of the honey bee genome sequence and improved genetic maps are utilized to analyze a genome displaying 10 times higher levels of recombination (19 cM/Mb) than previously analyzed genomes of higher eukaryotes. The exceptionally high recombination rate is distributed genome-wide, but varies by two orders of magnitude. Analysis of chromosome, sequence, and gene parameters with respect to recombination showed that local recombination rate is associated with distance to the telomere, GC content, and the number of simple repeats as described for low-recombining genomes. Recombination rate does not decrease with chromosome size. On average 5.7 recombination events per chromosome pair per meiosis are found in the honey bee genome. This contrasts with a wide range of taxa that have a uniform recombination frequency of about 1.6 per chromosome pair. The excess of recombination activity does not support a mechanistic role of recombination in stabilizing pairs of homologous chromosome during chromosome pairing. Recombination rate is associated with gene size, suggesting that introns are larger in regions of low recombination and may improve the efficacy of selection in these regions. Very few transposons and no retrotransposons are present in the high-recombining genome. We propose evolutionary explanations for the exceptionally high genome-wide recombination rate.

  8. Parasite-host interactions between the Varroa mite and the honey bee : a contribution to sustainable Varroa control

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Calis, J.N.M.

    2001-01-01

    Introduction

    Varroa mites as parasites of honey bees

    Varroa destructor (Anderson & Trueman, 2000), is the most important pest of European races of the Western honey bee, Apis mellifera L., weakening bees

  9. Novel fungal proteins in the chalkbrood infection of honey bee larvae

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Roth, Doris; Jensen, Annette Bruun; Grell, Morten Nedergaard

    2009-01-01

    . Here we investigate the interaction between the honey bee and its fungal pathogen Ascosphaera apis, the causative agent of chalkbrood, by identifying enzymes secreted by bee and fungus during different timepoints of infection. Upon testing A. apis-infected larvae for enzyme activity, the larvae...... the trappants are sequenced and annotated, selected genes are further described. As a result, we will deepen the understanding of chalkbrood, one of the main honey bee pests with relevant impact on the economy, among others due to the essential role of bees in pollination....

  10. Acute bee paralysis virus occurs in the Asian honey bee Apis cerana and parasitic mite Tropilaelaps mercedesae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chanpanitkitchote, Pichaya; Chen, Yanping; Evans, Jay D; Li, Wenfeng; Li, Jianghong; Hamilton, Michele; Chantawannakul, Panuwan

    2018-01-01

    Viruses, and especially RNA viruses, constantly change and adapt to new host species and vectors, posing a potential threat of new and reemerging infectious diseases. Honey bee Acute bee paralysis virus (ABPV) and Deformed wing virus (DWV) are two of the most common honey bee viruses found in European honey bees Apis mellifera and have been implicated in worldwide Varroa-associated bee colony losses. Previous studies have shown that DWV has jumped hosts several times in history causing infection in multiple host species. In the present study, we show that DWV infection could be detected in the Asian honey bee, A. cerana, and the parasitic mite Tropilaelaps mercedesae, confirming previous findings that DWV is a multi-host pathogen and supporting the notion that the high prevalence of DWV in honey bee host populations could be attributed to the high adaptability of this virus. Furthermore, our study provides the first evidence that ABPV occurs in both A. cerana and T. mercedesae in northern Thailand. The geographical proximity of host species likely played an important role in the initial exposure and the subsequent cross-species transmission of these viruses. Phylogenetic analyses suggest that ABPV might have moved from T. mercedesae to A. mellifera and to A. cerana while DWV might have moved in the opposite direction from A. cerana to A. mellifera and T. mercedesae. This result may reflect the differences in virus life history and virus-host interactions, warranting further investigation of virus transmission, epidemiology, and impacts of virus infections in the new hosts. The results from this study indicate that viral populations will continue to evolve and likely continue to expand host range, increasing the need for effective surveillance and control of virus infections in honey bee populations. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Effects of Imidacloprid and Varroa destructor on survival and health of European honey bees, Apis mellifera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbo, Pendo M; Kawasaki, Joshua K; Hamilton, Michele; Cook, Steven C; DeGrandi-Hoffman, Gloria; Li, Wen Feng; Liu, Jie; Chen, Yan Ping

    2017-06-01

    There has been growing concern over declines in populations of honey bees and other pollinators which are a vital part to our food security. It is imperative to identify factors responsible for accelerated declines in bee populations and develop solutions for reversing bee losses. While exact causes of colony losses remain elusive, risk factors thought to play key roles are ectoparasitic mites Varroa destructor and neonicotinoid pesticides. The present study aims to investigate effects of a neonicotinoid pesticide Imidacloprid and Varroa mites individually on survivorship, growth, physiology, virus dynamics and immunity of honey bee workers. Our study provides clear evidence that the exposure to sublethal doses of Imidacloprid could exert a significantly negative effect on health and survival of honey bees. We observed a significant reduction in the titer of vitellogenin (Vg), an egg yolk precursor that regulates the honey bees development and behavior and often are linked to energy homeostasis, in bees exposed to Imidacloprid. This result indicates that sublethal exposure to neonicotinoid could lead to increased energy usage in honey bees as detoxification is a energy-consuming metabolic process and suggests that Vg could be a useful biomarker for measuring levels of energy stress and sublethal effects of pesticides on honey bees. Measurement of the quantitative effects of different levels of Varroa mite infestation on the replication dynamic of Deformed wing virus (DWV), an RNA virus associated with Varroa infestation, and expression level of immune genes yields unique insights into how honey bees respond to stressors under laboratory conditions. © 2016 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  12. Effects of Imidacloprid and Varroa destructor on survival and health of European honey bees, Apis mellifera

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Pendo M.Abbo; Joshua K.Kawasaki; Michele Hamilton; Steven C.Cook; Gloria DeGrandi-Hoffman; Wen Feng Li; Jie Liu; Yan Ping Chen

    2017-01-01

    There has been growing concern over declines in populations of honey bees and other pollinators which are a vital part to our food security.It is imperative to identify factors responsible for accelerated declines in bee populations and develop solutions for reversing bee losses.While exact causes of colony losses remain elusive,risk factors thought to play key roles are ectoparasitic mites Varroa destructor and neonicotinoid pesticides.The present study aims to investigate effects of a neonicotinoid pesticide Imidacloprid and Varroa mites individually on survivorship,growth,physiology,virus dynamics and immunity of honey bee workers.Our study provides clear evidence that the exposure to sublethal doses of Imidacloprid could exert a significantly negative effect on health and survival of honey bees.We observed a significant reduction in the titer ofvitellogenin (Vg),an egg yolk precursor that regulates the honey bees development and behavior and often are linked to energy homeostasis,in bees exposed to Imidacloprid.This result indicates that sublethal exposure to neonicotinoid could lead to increased energy usage in honey bees as detoxification is a energy-consuming metabolic process and suggests that Vg could be a useful biomarker for measuring levels of energy stress and sublethal effects of pesticideson honey bees.Measurement of the quantitative effects of different levels of Varroa mite infestation on the replication dynamic of Deformed wing virus (DWV),an RNA virus associated with Varroa infestation,and expression level of immune genes yields unique insights into how honey bees respond to stressors under laboratory conditions.

  13. Lethal and sublethal effects, and incomplete clearance of ingested imidacloprid in honey bees (Apis mellifera).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez-Bayo, Francisco; Belzunces, Luc; Bonmatin, Jean-Marc

    2017-11-01

    A previous study claimed a differential behavioural resilience between spring or summer honey bees (Apis mellifera) and bumble bees (Bombus terrestris) after exposure to syrup contaminated with 125 µg L -1 imidacloprid for 8 days. The authors of that study based their assertion on the lack of body residues and toxic effects in honey bees, whereas bumble bees showed body residues of imidacloprid and impaired locomotion during the exposure. We have reproduced their experiment using winter honey bees subject to the same protocol. After exposure to syrup contaminated with 125 µg L -1 imidacloprid, honey bees experienced high mortality rates (up to 45%), had body residues of imidacloprid in the range 2.7-5.7 ng g -1 and exhibited abnormal behaviours (restless, apathetic, trembling and falling over) that were significantly different from the controls. There was incomplete clearance of the insecticide during the 10-day exposure period. Our results contrast with the findings reported in the previous study for spring or summer honey bees, but are consistent with the results reported for the other bee species.

  14. Molecular Effects of Neonicotinoids in Honey Bees (Apis mellifera).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christen, Verena; Mittner, Fabian; Fent, Karl

    2016-04-05

    Neonicotinoids are implicated in the decline of bee populations. As agonists of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, they disturb acetylcholine receptor signaling leading to neurotoxicity. Several behavioral studies showed the link between neonicotinoid exposure and adverse effects on foraging activity and reproduction. However, molecular effects underlying these effects are poorly understood. Here we elucidated molecular effects at environmental realistic levels of three neonicotinoids and nicotine, and compared laboratory studies to field exposures with acetamiprid. We assessed transcriptional alterations of eight selected genes in caged honey bees exposed to different concentrations of the neonicotinoids acetamiprid, clothianidin, imidacloporid, and thiamethoxam, as well as nicotine. We determined transcripts of several targets, including nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α 1 and α 2 subunit, the multifunctional gene vitellogenin, immune system genes apidaecin and defensin-1, stress-related gene catalase and two genes linked to memory formation, pka and creb. Vitellogenin showed a strong increase upon neonicotinoid exposures in the laboratory and field, while creb and pka transcripts were down-regulated. The induction of vitellogenin suggests adverse effects on foraging activity, whereas creb and pka down-regulation may be implicated in decreased long-term memory formation. Transcriptional alterations occurred at environmental concentrations and provide an explanation for the molecular basis of observed adverse effects of neonicotinoids to bees.

  15. Assessment of Appetitive Behavior in Honey Bee Dance Followers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moauro, Mariel A.; Balbuena, M. Sol; Farina, Walter M.

    2018-01-01

    Honey bees transfer different informational components of the discovered feeding source to their nestmates during the waggle dance. To decode the multicomponent information of this complex behavior, dance followers have to attend to the most relevant signal elements while filtering out less relevant ones. To achieve that, dance followers should present improved abilities to acquire information compared with those bees not engaged in this behavior. Through proboscis extension response assays, sensory and cognitive abilities were tested in follower and non-follower bees. Individuals were captured within the hive, immediately after following waggle runs or a bit further from the dancer. Both behavioral categories present low and similar spontaneous odor responses (SORs). However, followers exhibit differences in responsiveness to sucrose and odor discrimination: followers showed increased gustatory responsiveness and, after olfactory differential conditioning, better memory retention than non-followers. Thus, the abilities of the dance followers related to appetitive behavior would allow them to improve the acquisition of the dance surrounding information. PMID:29755329

  16. Assessment of Appetitive Behavior in Honey Bee Dance Followers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariel A. Moauro

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Honey bees transfer different informational components of the discovered feeding source to their nestmates during the waggle dance. To decode the multicomponent information of this complex behavior, dance followers have to attend to the most relevant signal elements while filtering out less relevant ones. To achieve that, dance followers should present improved abilities to acquire information compared with those bees not engaged in this behavior. Through proboscis extension response assays, sensory and cognitive abilities were tested in follower and non-follower bees. Individuals were captured within the hive, immediately after following waggle runs or a bit further from the dancer. Both behavioral categories present low and similar spontaneous odor responses (SORs. However, followers exhibit differences in responsiveness to sucrose and odor discrimination: followers showed increased gustatory responsiveness and, after olfactory differential conditioning, better memory retention than non-followers. Thus, the abilities of the dance followers related to appetitive behavior would allow them to improve the acquisition of the dance surrounding information.

  17. Pathogen prevalence and abundance in honey bee colonies involved in almond pollination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavigli, Ian; Daughenbaugh, Katie F; Martin, Madison; Lerch, Michael; Banner, Katie; Garcia, Emma; Brutscher, Laura M; Flenniken, Michelle L

    Honey bees are important pollinators of agricultural crops. Since 2006, US beekeepers have experienced high annual honey bee colony losses, which may be attributed to multiple abiotic and biotic factors, including pathogens. However, the relative importance of these factors has not been fully elucidated. To identify the most prevalent pathogens and investigate the relationship between colony strength and health, we assessed pathogen occurrence, prevalence, and abundance in Western US honey bee colonies involved in almond pollination. The most prevalent pathogens were Black queen cell virus (BQCV), Lake Sinai virus 2 (LSV2), Sacbrood virus (SBV), Nosema ceranae , and trypanosomatids. Our results indicated that pathogen prevalence and abundance were associated with both sampling date and beekeeping operation, that prevalence was highest in honey bee samples obtained immediately after almond pollination, and that weak colonies had a greater mean pathogen prevalence than strong colonies.

  18. Vitellogenin in the honey bee brain: Atypical localization of a reproductive protein that promotes longevity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Münch, Daniel; Ihle, Kate E; Salmela, Heli; Amdam, Gro V

    2015-11-01

    In comparative gerontology, highly social insects such as honey bees (Apis mellifera) receive much attention due to very different and flexible aging patterns among closely related siblings. While experimental strategies that manipulate socio-environmental factors suggest a causative link between aging and social signals and behaviors, the molecular underpinnings of this linkage are less well understood. Here we study the atypical localization of the egg-yolk protein vitellogenin (Vg) in the brain of the honey bee. Vg is known to influence honey bee social regulation and aging rate. Our findings suggest that Vg immunoreactivity in the brain is specifically localized within the class of non-neuronal glial cells. We discuss how these results can help explain the socially-dependent aging rate of honey bees. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Wintering Map for Honey Bee Colonies in El-Behera Governorate

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    MICHAEL HORSFALL

    www.bioline.org.br/ja. Wintering Map for Honey Bee Colonies in El-Behera Governorate, Egypt by using ... F. ABOU-SHAARA. Plant Protection Department, Faculty of Agriculture, Damanhour University, Egypt. ..... Architecture of automatized ...

  20. western honey bee management for crop pollination abstract résumé

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ACSS

    2018-02-09

    Feb 9, 2018 ... of Western honey bee for pollination services is reported mainly in developed countries. Because ... plants, or accumulating in nectar and pollen that affect ..... Ecology and Evolution .... Pollinator interactions in the Neotropics.

  1. The African honey bee: factors contributing to a successful biological invasion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott Schneider, Stanley; DeGrandi-Hoffman, Gloria; Smith, Deborah Roan

    2004-01-01

    The African honey bee subspecies Apis mellifera scutellata has colonized much of the Americas in less than 50 years and has largely replaced European bees throughout its range in the New World. The African bee therefore provides an excellent opportunity to examine the factors that influence invasion success. We provide a synthesis of recent research on the African bee, concentrating on its ability to displace European honey bees. Specifically, we consider (a) the genetic composition of the expanding population and the symmetry of gene flow between African and European bees, (b) the mechanisms that favor the preservation of the African genome, and (c) the possible range and impact of the African bee in the United States.

  2. Regular dorsal dimples and damaged mites of Varroa destructor in some Iranian honey bees (Apis mellifera)

    OpenAIRE

    Ardestani, Masoud M.; Ebadi, Rahim; Tahmasbi, Gholamhossein

    2011-01-01

    The frequency of damaged Varroa destructor Anderson and Trueman (Mesostigmata: Varroidae) found on the bottom board of hives of the honey bee, Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera: Apidae) has been used as an indicator of the degree of tolerance or resistance of honey bee colonies against mites. However, it is not clear that this measure is adequate. These injuries should be separated from regular dorsal dimples that have a developmental origin. To investigate damage to Varroa mites and regular dor...

  3. Nephroprotective effect of bee honey and royal jelly against subchronic cisplatin toxicity in rats

    OpenAIRE

    Ibrahim, Abdelazim; Eldaim, Mabrouk A. Abd; Abdel-Daim, Mohamed M.

    2015-01-01

    Cisplatin is one of the most potent and effective chemotherapeutic agents. However, its antineoplastic use is limited due to its cumulative nephrotoxic side effects. Therefore, the present study was undertaken to examine the nephroprotective potential of dietary bee honey and royal jelly against subchronic cisplatin toxicity in rats. Male Wistar rats were randomly divided into controls, cisplatin-treated, bee honey-pretreated cisplatin-treated and royal jelly-pretreated cisplatin-treated grou...

  4. Varroa Sensitive Hygiene contributes to naturally selected varroa resistance in honey bees

    OpenAIRE

    Panziera, Delphine; Langevelde, van, Frank; Blacquière, Tjeerd

    2017-01-01

    The parasitic mite Varroa destructor is a serious threat for western honey bee colonies and beekeepers are compelled to control it to keep their colonies healthy. Yet, by controlling varroa no resistance to the parasite can evolve. As a trial, honey bee colonies have been left untreated in isolated locations to allow development of resistance or tolerance to the mite. These colonies developed an ability to live without control measures against varroa, although the traits responsible for this ...

  5. Using DNA Metabarcoding to Identify the Floral Composition of Honey: A New Tool for Investigating Honey Bee Foraging Preferences.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer Hawkins

    Full Text Available Identifying the floral composition of honey provides a method for investigating the plants that honey bees visit. We compared melissopalynology, where pollen grains retrieved from honey are identified morphologically, with a DNA metabarcoding approach using the rbcL DNA barcode marker and 454-pyrosequencing. We compared nine honeys supplied by beekeepers in the UK. DNA metabarcoding and melissopalynology were able to detect the most abundant floral components of honey. There was 92% correspondence for the plant taxa that had an abundance of over 20%. However, the level of similarity when all taxa were compared was lower, ranging from 22-45%, and there was little correspondence between the relative abundance of taxa found using the two techniques. DNA metabarcoding provided much greater repeatability, with a 64% taxa match compared to 28% with melissopalynology. DNA metabarcoding has the advantage over melissopalynology in that it does not require a high level of taxonomic expertise, a greater sample size can be screened and it provides greater resolution for some plant families. However, it does not provide a quantitative approach and pollen present in low levels are less likely to be detected. We investigated the plants that were frequently used by honey bees by examining the results obtained from both techniques. Plants with a broad taxonomic range were detected, covering 46 families and 25 orders, but a relatively small number of plants were consistently seen across multiple honey samples. Frequently found herbaceous species were Rubus fruticosus, Filipendula ulmaria, Taraxacum officinale, Trifolium spp., Brassica spp. and the non-native, invasive, Impatiens glandulifera. Tree pollen was frequently seen belonging to Castanea sativa, Crataegus monogyna and species of Malus, Salix and Quercus. We conclude that although honey bees are considered to be supergeneralists in their foraging choices, there are certain key species or plant groups that

  6. Using DNA Metabarcoding to Identify the Floral Composition of Honey: A New Tool for Investigating Honey Bee Foraging Preferences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkins, Jennifer; de Vere, Natasha; Griffith, Adelaide; Ford, Col R; Allainguillaume, Joel; Hegarty, Matthew J; Baillie, Les; Adams-Groom, Beverley

    2015-01-01

    Identifying the floral composition of honey provides a method for investigating the plants that honey bees visit. We compared melissopalynology, where pollen grains retrieved from honey are identified morphologically, with a DNA metabarcoding approach using the rbcL DNA barcode marker and 454-pyrosequencing. We compared nine honeys supplied by beekeepers in the UK. DNA metabarcoding and melissopalynology were able to detect the most abundant floral components of honey. There was 92% correspondence for the plant taxa that had an abundance of over 20%. However, the level of similarity when all taxa were compared was lower, ranging from 22-45%, and there was little correspondence between the relative abundance of taxa found using the two techniques. DNA metabarcoding provided much greater repeatability, with a 64% taxa match compared to 28% with melissopalynology. DNA metabarcoding has the advantage over melissopalynology in that it does not require a high level of taxonomic expertise, a greater sample size can be screened and it provides greater resolution for some plant families. However, it does not provide a quantitative approach and pollen present in low levels are less likely to be detected. We investigated the plants that were frequently used by honey bees by examining the results obtained from both techniques. Plants with a broad taxonomic range were detected, covering 46 families and 25 orders, but a relatively small number of plants were consistently seen across multiple honey samples. Frequently found herbaceous species were Rubus fruticosus, Filipendula ulmaria, Taraxacum officinale, Trifolium spp., Brassica spp. and the non-native, invasive, Impatiens glandulifera. Tree pollen was frequently seen belonging to Castanea sativa, Crataegus monogyna and species of Malus, Salix and Quercus. We conclude that although honey bees are considered to be supergeneralists in their foraging choices, there are certain key species or plant groups that are particularly

  7. Safety of methionine, a novel biopesticide, to adult and larval honey bees (Apis mellifera L.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weeks, Emma N I; Schmehl, Daniel R; Baniszewski, Julie; Tomé, Hudson V V; Cuda, James P; Ellis, James D; Stevens, Bruce R

    2018-03-01

    Methionine is an essential/indispensible amino acid nutrient required by adult and larval honey bees (Apis mellifera L. [Hymenoptera: Apidae]). Bees are unable to rear broods on pollen deficient in methionine, and reportedly behaviorally avoid collecting pollen or nectar from florets deficient in methioinine. In contrast, it has been demonstrated that methionine is toxic to certain pest insects; thus it has been proposed as an effective biopesticide. As an ecofriendly integrated pest management agent, methionine boasts a novel mode of action differentiating it from conventional pesticides, while providing non-target safety. Pesticides that minimize collateral effects on bees are desirable, given the economic and ecological concerns about honey bee health. The aim of the present study was to assess the potential impact of the biopesticide methionine on non-target adult and larval honey bees. Acute contact adult toxicology bioassays, oral adult assessments and chronic larval toxicity assessments were performed as per U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requirements. Our results demonstrated that methionine fits the U.S. EPA category of practically nontoxic (i.e. lethal dose to 50% mortality or LD 50 > 11µg/bee) to adult honey bees. The contact LD 50 was > 25µg/bee and the oral LD 50 was > 100µg/bee. Mortality was observed in larval bees that ingested DL-methionine (effective concentration to 50% mortality or EC 50 560µg/bee). Therefore, we conclude that methionine poses little threat to the health of the honey bee, due to unlikely exposure at concentrations shown to elicit toxic effects. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Varroa destructor Mites Can Nimbly Climb from Flowers onto Foraging Honey Bees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David T Peck

    Full Text Available Varroa destructor, the introduced parasite of European honey bees associated with massive colony deaths, spreads readily through populations of honey bee colonies, both managed colonies living crowded together in apiaries and wild colonies living widely dispersed in natural settings. Mites are hypothesized to spread between most managed colonies via phoretically riding forager bees when they engage in robbing colonies or they drift between hives. However, widely spaced wild colonies show Varroa infestation despite limited opportunities for robbing and little or no drifting of bees between colonies. Both wild and managed colonies may also exchange mites via another mechanism that has received remarkably little attention or study: floral transmission. The present study tested the ability of mites to infest foragers at feeders or flowers. We show that Varroa destructor mites are highly capable of phoretically infesting foraging honey bees, detail the mechanisms and maneuvers by which they do so, and describe mite behaviors post-infestation.

  9. Varroa destructor Mites Can Nimbly Climb from Flowers onto Foraging Honey Bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Michael L.; Seeley, Thomas D.

    2016-01-01

    Varroa destructor, the introduced parasite of European honey bees associated with massive colony deaths, spreads readily through populations of honey bee colonies, both managed colonies living crowded together in apiaries and wild colonies living widely dispersed in natural settings. Mites are hypothesized to spread between most managed colonies via phoretically riding forager bees when they engage in robbing colonies or they drift between hives. However, widely spaced wild colonies show Varroa infestation despite limited opportunities for robbing and little or no drifting of bees between colonies. Both wild and managed colonies may also exchange mites via another mechanism that has received remarkably little attention or study: floral transmission. The present study tested the ability of mites to infest foragers at feeders or flowers. We show that Varroa destructor mites are highly capable of phoretically infesting foraging honey bees, detail the mechanisms and maneuvers by which they do so, and describe mite behaviors post-infestation. PMID:27942015

  10. Varroa destructor Mites Can Nimbly Climb from Flowers onto Foraging Honey Bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peck, David T; Smith, Michael L; Seeley, Thomas D

    2016-01-01

    Varroa destructor, the introduced parasite of European honey bees associated with massive colony deaths, spreads readily through populations of honey bee colonies, both managed colonies living crowded together in apiaries and wild colonies living widely dispersed in natural settings. Mites are hypothesized to spread between most managed colonies via phoretically riding forager bees when they engage in robbing colonies or they drift between hives. However, widely spaced wild colonies show Varroa infestation despite limited opportunities for robbing and little or no drifting of bees between colonies. Both wild and managed colonies may also exchange mites via another mechanism that has received remarkably little attention or study: floral transmission. The present study tested the ability of mites to infest foragers at feeders or flowers. We show that Varroa destructor mites are highly capable of phoretically infesting foraging honey bees, detail the mechanisms and maneuvers by which they do so, and describe mite behaviors post-infestation.

  11. Honey Bee Gut Microbiome Is Altered by In-Hive Pesticide Exposures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kakumanu, Madhavi L; Reeves, Alison M; Anderson, Troy D; Rodrigues, Richard R; Williams, Mark A

    2016-01-01

    Honey bees (Apis mellifera) are the primary pollinators of major horticultural crops. Over the last few decades, a substantial decline in honey bees and their colonies have been reported. While a plethora of factors could contribute to the putative decline, pathogens, and pesticides are common concerns that draw attention. In addition to potential direct effects on honey bees, indirect pesticide effects could include alteration of essential gut microbial communities and symbionts that are important to honey bee health (e.g., immune system). The primary objective of this study was to determine the microbiome associated with honey bees exposed to commonly used in-hive pesticides: coumaphos, tau-fluvalinate, and chlorothalonil. Treatments were replicated at three independent locations near Blacksburg Virginia, and included a no-pesticide amended control at each location. The microbiome was characterized through pyrosequencing of V2-V3 regions of the bacterial 16S rRNA gene and fungal ITS region. Pesticide exposure significantly affected the structure of bacterial but not fungal communities. The bee bacteriome, similar to other studies, was dominated by sequences derived from Bacilli, Actinobacteria, α-, β-, γ-proteobacteria. The fungal community sequences were dominated by Ascomycetes and Basidiomycetes. The Multi-response permutation procedures (MRPP) and subsequent Phylogenetic Investigation of Communities by Reconstruction of Unobserved States (PICRUSt) analysis indicated that chlorothalonil caused significant change to the structure and functional potential of the honey bee gut bacterial community relative to control. Putative genes for oxidative phosphorylation, for example, increased while sugar metabolism and peptidase potential declined in the microbiome of chlorothalonil exposed bees. The results of this field-based study suggest the potential for pesticide induced changes to the honey bee gut microbiome that warrant further investigation.

  12. Drone and Worker Brood Microclimates Are Regulated Differentially in Honey Bees, Apis mellifera.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zhiyong; Huang, Zachary Y; Sharma, Dhruv B; Xue, Yunbo; Wang, Zhi; Ren, Bingzhong

    2016-01-01

    Honey bee (Apis mellifera) drones and workers show differences in morphology, physiology, and behavior. Because the functions of drones are more related to colony reproduction, and those of workers relate to both survival and reproduction, we hypothesize that the microclimate for worker brood is more precisely regulated than that of drone brood. We assessed temperature and relative humidity (RH) inside honey bee colonies for both drone and worker brood throughout the three-stage development period, using digital HOBO® Data Loggers. The major findings of this study are that 1) both drone and worker castes show the highest temperature for eggs, followed by larvae and then pupae; 2) temperature in drones are maintained at higher precision (smaller variance) in drone eggs and larvae, but at a lower precision in pupae than the corresponding stages of workers; 3) RH regulation showed higher variance in drone than workers across all brood stages; and 4) RH regulation seems largely due to regulation by workers, as the contribution from empty honey combs are much smaller compared to that from adult workers. We conclude that honey bee colonies maintain both temperature and humidity actively; that the microclimate for sealed drone brood is less precisely regulated than worker brood; and that combs with honey contribute very little to the increase of RH in honey bee colonies. These findings increase our understanding of microclimate regulation in honey bees and may have implications for beekeeping practices.

  13. Draft genome of the honey bee ectoparasitic mite, Tropilaelaps mercedesae, is shaped by the parasitic life history

    OpenAIRE

    Dong, Xiaofeng; Armstrong, Stuart D.; Xia, Dong; Makepeace, Benjamin L.; Darby, Alistair C.; Kadowaki, Tatsuhiko

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The number of managed honey bee colonies has considerably decreased in many developed countries in recent years and ectoparasitic mites are considered as major threats to honey bee colonies and health. However, their general biology remains poorly understood. We sequenced the genome of Tropilaelaps mercedesae, the prevalent ectoparasitic mite infesting honey bees in Asia, and predicted 15?190 protein-coding genes that were well supported by the mite transcriptomes and proteomic data....

  14. Does Cry1Ab protein affect learning performances of the honey bee Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera, Apidae)?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramirez-Romero, R; Desneux, N; Decourtye, A; Chaffiol, A; Pham-Delègue, M H

    2008-06-01

    Genetically modified Bt crops are increasingly used worldwide but side effects and especially sublethal effects on beneficial insects remain poorly studied. Honey bees are beneficial insects for natural and cultivated ecosystems through pollination. The goal of the present study was to assess potential effects of two concentrations of Cry1Ab protein (3 and 5000 ppb) on young adult honey bees. Following a complementary bioassay, our experiments evaluated effects of the Cry1Ab on three major life traits of young adult honey bees: (a) survival of honey bees during sub-chronic exposure to Cry1Ab, (b) feeding behaviour, and (c) learning performance at the time that honey bees become foragers. The latter effect was tested using the proboscis extension reflex (PER) procedure. The same effects were also tested using a chemical pesticide, imidacloprid, as positive reference. The tested concentrations of Cry1Ab protein did not cause lethal effects on honey bees. However, honey bee feeding behaviour was affected when exposed to the highest concentration of Cry1Ab protein, with honey bees taking longer to imbibe the contaminated syrup. Moreover, honey bees exposed to 5000 ppb of Cry1Ab had disturbed learning performances. Honey bees continued to respond to a conditioned odour even in the absence of a food reward. Our results show that transgenic crops expressing Cry1Ab protein at 5000 ppb may affect food consumption or learning processes and thereby may impact honey bee foraging efficiency. The implications of these results are discussed in terms of risks of transgenic Bt crops for honey bees.

  15. Queen rearing and selection practices and their impact on the genetic diversity and fitness of honey bee colonies

    OpenAIRE

    Bouga, Maria; Arnold, Gerard; Bienkowska, Malgorzata; Büchler, Ralph; Garnery, Lionel; Ivanova, Evgeniya; De Jong, David; De la Rúa, Pilar; Kence, Meral; Kezic, Nikola; Kryger, Per; Murilhas, António; Oldroyd, Benjamin; Oliver, Randy; Palacio, María

    2011-01-01

    The Apimondia working group on honey bee diversity and fitness (AWG 7) was created on October 25, 2010 as a Scientific Working Group of Apimondia. The aim of this AWG is to collect information on honey bee queen rearing practices, and examine their impact on the genetic variability and general health of honey bee colonies. The AWG consists of 23 members from 16 different countries. The world wide survey being conducted by this AWG is focused on gathering information on how selection methods, ...

  16. First report of sacbrood virus in honey bee (Apis mellifera) colonies in Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freiberg, M; De Jong, D; Message, D; Cox-Foster, D

    2012-09-13

    Sacbrood disease, an affliction of honey bees (Apis mellifera) characterized by brood that fails to pupate and subsequently dies, is an important threat to honey bee health. The disease is caused by the sacbrood virus (SBV), a positive-, single-stranded RNA virus in the order Picornavirales. Because of the economic importance of honey bees for both pollination and honey production, it is vital to understand and monitor the spread of viruses such as SBV. This virus has been found in many places across the globe, including recently in some South American countries, and it is likely that it will continue to spread. We performed a preliminary study to search for SBV in two apiaries of Africanized honey bees in the State of São Paulo, Brazil, using RT-PCR and Sanger sequencing and found the first evidence of SBV in honey bee colonies in Brazil. The virus was detected in larvae, foraging and nurse bees from two colonies, one of which had symptoms of sacbrood disease, at the beginning of the winter season in June 2011. No SBV was found in samples from nine other nearby colonies.

  17. Genetic structure of Mount Huang honey bee (Apis cerana) populations: evidence from microsatellite polymorphism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Fang; Shi, Tengfei; Huang, Sisi; Yu, Linsheng; Bi, Shoudong

    2016-01-01

    The Mount Huang eastern honey bees ( Apis cerana ) are an endemic population, which is well adapted to the local agricultural and ecological environment. In this study, the genetic structure of seven eastern honey bees ( A. cerana ) populations from Mount Huang in China were analyzed by SSR (simple sequence repeat) markers. The results revealed that 16 pairs of primers used amplified a total of 143 alleles. The number of alleles per locus ranged from 6 to 13, with a mean value of 8.94 alleles per locus. Observed and expected heterozygosities showed mean values of 0.446 and 0.831 respectively. UPGMA cluster analysis grouped seven eastern honey bees in three groups. The results obtained show a high genetic diversity in the honey bee populations studied in Mount Huang, and high differentiation among all the populations, suggesting that scarce exchange of honey bee species happened in Mount Huang. Our study demonstrated that the Mount Huang honey bee populations still have a natural genome worth being protected for conservation.

  18. Hemolymph proteome changes during worker brood development match the biological divergences between western honey bees (Apis mellifera) and eastern honey bees (Apis cerana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Mao; Ramadan, Haitham; Han, Bin; Fang, Yu; Li, Jianke

    2014-07-05

    Hemolymph plays key roles in honey bee molecule transport, immune defense, and in monitoring the physiological condition. There is a lack of knowledge regarding how the proteome achieves these biological missions for both the western and eastern honey bees (Apis mellifera and Apis cerana). A time-resolved proteome was compared using two-dimensional electrophoresis-based proteomics to reveal the mechanistic differences by analysis of hemolymph proteome changes between the worker bees of two bee species during the larval to pupal stages. The brood body weight of Apis mellifera was significantly heavier than that of Apis cerana at each developmental stage. Significantly, different protein expression patterns and metabolic pathways were observed in 74 proteins (166 spots) that were differentially abundant between the two bee species. The function of hemolymph in energy storage, odor communication, and antioxidation is of equal importance for the western and eastern bees, indicated by the enhanced expression of different protein species. However, stronger expression of protein folding, cytoskeletal and developmental proteins, and more highly activated energy producing pathways in western bees suggests that the different bee species have developed unique strategies to match their specific physiology using hemolymph to deliver nutrients and in immune defense. Our disparate findings constitute a proof-of-concept of molecular details that the ecologically shaped different physiological conditions of different bee species match with the hemolymph proteome during the brood stage. This also provides a starting point for future research on the specific hemolymph proteins or pathways related to the differential phenotypes or physiology.

  19. Multiple Virus Infections and the Characteristics of Chronic Bee Paralysis Virus in Diseased Honey Bees (Apis Mellifera L. in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wu Yan Y.

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available China has the largest number of managed honey bee colonies globally, but there is currently no data on viral infection in diseased A. mellifera L. colonies in China. In particular, there is a lack of data on chronic bee paralysis virus (CBPV in Chinese honey bee colonies. Consequently, the present study investigated the occurrence and frequency of several widespread honey bee viruses in diseased Chinese apiaries, and we used the reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR assay. Described was the relationship between the presence of CBPV and diseased colonies (with at least one of the following symptoms: depopulation, paralysis, dark body colorings and hairless, or a mass of dead bees on the ground surrounding the beehives. Phylogenetic analyses of CBPV were employed. The prevalence of multiple infections of honey bee viruses in diseased Chinese apiaries was 100%, and the prevalence of infections with even five and six viruses were higher than expected. The incidence of CBPV in diseased colonies was significantly higher than that in apparently healthy colonies in Chinese A. mellifera aparies, and CBPV isolates from China can be separated into Chinese-Japanese clade 1 and 2. The results indicate that beekeeping in China may be threatened by colony decline due to the high prevalence of multiple viruses with CBPV.

  20. The possible role of honey bees in the spread of pollen from field trials

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kleinjans, H.A.W.; Keulen, van S.J.; Blacquière, T.; Booij, C.J.H.; Hok-A-Hin, C.H.; Cornelissen, A.C.M.; Dooremalen, van C.

    2012-01-01

    Honey bees are important pollinators in agricultural crops, home gardens, orchards and wildlife habitats. As they fly from flower to flower in search of nectar and pollen, they transfer pollen from plant to plant, thus fertilizing the plants and enabling them to bear fruit. In light of this, honey

  1. The impact of pollen consumption on honey bee digestive physiology and carbohydrate metabolism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbohydrate-active enzymes play an important role in the honey bee (Apis mellifera) due to its dietary specialization on plant-based nutrition. Secretory glycoside hydrolases (GHs) produced in worker head glands aid in the processing of floral nectar into honey and are expressed in accordance with ...

  2. Multiple routes of pesticide exposure for honey bees living near agricultural fields.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian H Krupke

    Full Text Available Populations of honey bees and other pollinators have declined worldwide in recent years. A variety of stressors have been implicated as potential causes, including agricultural pesticides. Neonicotinoid insecticides, which are widely used and highly toxic to honey bees, have been found in previous analyses of honey bee pollen and comb material. However, the routes of exposure have remained largely undefined. We used LC/MS-MS to analyze samples of honey bees, pollen stored in the hive and several potential exposure routes associated with plantings of neonicotinoid treated maize. Our results demonstrate that bees are exposed to these compounds and several other agricultural pesticides in several ways throughout the foraging period. During spring, extremely high levels of clothianidin and thiamethoxam were found in planter exhaust material produced during the planting of treated maize seed. We also found neonicotinoids in the soil of each field we sampled, including unplanted fields. Plants visited by foraging bees (dandelions growing near these fields were found to contain neonicotinoids as well. This indicates deposition of neonicotinoids on the flowers, uptake by the root system, or both. Dead bees collected near hive entrances during the spring sampling period were found to contain clothianidin as well, although whether exposure was oral (consuming pollen or by contact (soil/planter dust is unclear. We also detected the insecticide clothianidin in pollen collected by bees and stored in the hive. When maize plants in our field reached anthesis, maize pollen from treated seed was found to contain clothianidin and other pesticides; and honey bees in our study readily collected maize pollen. These findings clarify some of the mechanisms by which honey bees may be exposed to agricultural pesticides throughout the growing season. These results have implications for a wide range of large-scale annual cropping systems that utilize neonicotinoid seed

  3. The Honey Bee Pathosphere of Mongolia: European Viruses in Central Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsevegmid, Khaliunaa; Neumann, Peter; Yañez, Orlando

    2016-01-01

    Parasites and pathogens are apparent key factors for the detrimental health of managed European honey bee subspecies, Apis mellifera. Apicultural trade is arguably the main factor for the almost global distribution of most honey bee diseases, thereby increasing chances for multiple infestations/infections of regions, apiaries, colonies and even individual bees. This imposes difficulties to evaluate the effects of pathogens in isolation, thereby creating demand to survey remote areas. Here, we conducted the first comprehensive survey for 14 honey bee pathogens in Mongolia (N = 3 regions, N = 9 locations, N = 151 colonies), where honey bee colonies depend on humans to overwinter. In Mongolia, honey bees, Apis spp., are not native and colonies of European A. mellifera subspecies have been introduced ~60 years ago. Despite the high detection power and large sample size across Mongolian regions with beekeeping, the mite Acarapis woodi, the bacteria Melissococcus plutonius and Paenibacillus larvae, the microsporidian Nosema apis, Acute bee paralysis virus, Kashmir bee virus, Israeli acute paralysis virus and Lake Sinai virus strain 2 were not detected, suggesting that they are either very rare or absent. The mite Varroa destructor, Nosema ceranae and four viruses (Sacbrood virus, Black queen cell virus, Deformed wing virus (DWV) and Chronic bee paralysis virus) were found with different prevalence. Despite the positive correlation between the prevalence of V. destructor mites and DWV, some areas had only mites, but not DWV, which is most likely due to the exceptional isolation of apiaries (up to 600 km). Phylogenetic analyses of the detected viruses reveal their clustering and European origin, thereby supporting the role of trade for pathogen spread and the isolation of Mongolia from South-Asian countries. In conclusion, this survey reveals the distinctive honey bee pathosphere of Mongolia, which offers opportunities for exciting future research.

  4. Sudden deaths and colony population decline in Greek honey bee colonies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacandritsos, N; Granato, A; Budge, G; Papanastasiou, I; Roinioti, E; Caldon, M; Falcaro, C; Gallina, A; Mutinelli, F

    2010-11-01

    During June and July of 2009, sudden deaths, tremulous movements and population declines of adult honey bees were reported by the beekeepers in the region of Peloponnesus (Mt. Mainalo), Greece. A preliminary study was carried out to investigate these unexplained phenomena in this region. In total, 37 bee samples, two brood frames containing honey bee brood of various ages, eight sugar samples and four sugar patties were collected from the affected colonies. The samples were tested for a range of pests, pathogens and pesticides. Symptomatic adult honey bees tested positive for Varroa destructor, Nosema ceranae, Chronic bee paralysis virus (CBPV), Acute paralysis virus (ABPV), Deformed wing virus (DWV), Sacbrood virus (SBV) and Black queen cell virus (BQCV), but negative for Acarapis woodi. American Foulbrood was absent from the brood samples. Chemical analysis revealed that amitraz, thiametoxan, clothianidin and acetamiprid were all absent from symptomatic adult bees, sugar and sugar patty samples. However, some bee samples, were contaminated with imidacloprid in concentrations between 14 ng/g and 39 ng/g tissue. We present: the infection of Greek honey bees by multiple viruses; the presence of N. ceranae in Greek honey bees and the first record of imidacloprid (neonicotonoid) residues in Greek honey bee tissues. The presence of multiple pathogens and pesticides made it difficult to associate a single specific cause to the depopulation phenomena observed in Greece, although we believe that viruses and N. ceranae synergistically played the most important role. A follow-up in-depth survey across all Greek regions is required to provide context to these preliminary findings. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. The Honey Bee Pathosphere of Mongolia: European Viruses in Central Asia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khaliunaa Tsevegmid

    Full Text Available Parasites and pathogens are apparent key factors for the detrimental health of managed European honey bee subspecies, Apis mellifera. Apicultural trade is arguably the main factor for the almost global distribution of most honey bee diseases, thereby increasing chances for multiple infestations/infections of regions, apiaries, colonies and even individual bees. This imposes difficulties to evaluate the effects of pathogens in isolation, thereby creating demand to survey remote areas. Here, we conducted the first comprehensive survey for 14 honey bee pathogens in Mongolia (N = 3 regions, N = 9 locations, N = 151 colonies, where honey bee colonies depend on humans to overwinter. In Mongolia, honey bees, Apis spp., are not native and colonies of European A. mellifera subspecies have been introduced ~60 years ago. Despite the high detection power and large sample size across Mongolian regions with beekeeping, the mite Acarapis woodi, the bacteria Melissococcus plutonius and Paenibacillus larvae, the microsporidian Nosema apis, Acute bee paralysis virus, Kashmir bee virus, Israeli acute paralysis virus and Lake Sinai virus strain 2 were not detected, suggesting that they are either very rare or absent. The mite Varroa destructor, Nosema ceranae and four viruses (Sacbrood virus, Black queen cell virus, Deformed wing virus (DWV and Chronic bee paralysis virus were found with different prevalence. Despite the positive correlation between the prevalence of V. destructor mites and DWV, some areas had only mites, but not DWV, which is most likely due to the exceptional isolation of apiaries (up to 600 km. Phylogenetic analyses of the detected viruses reveal their clustering and European origin, thereby supporting the role of trade for pathogen spread and the isolation of Mongolia from South-Asian countries. In conclusion, this survey reveals the distinctive honey bee pathosphere of Mongolia, which offers opportunities for exciting future research.

  6. Spore load and immune response of honey bees naturally infected by Nosema ceranae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wenfeng; Evans, Jay D; Li, Jianghong; Su, Songkun; Hamilton, Michele; Chen, Yanping

    2017-12-01

    Nosema ceranae causes widespread infection in adult workers of European honey bees, Apis mellifera, and has often been linked to honey bee colony losses worldwide. Previous investigations of honey bee immune response to N. ceranae infection were largely based on laboratory experiment, however, little is known about the immune response of honey bees that are naturally infected by N. ceranae. Here, we compared the infection levels of N. ceranae in three different categories of adult bees (emergent bees, nurses, and foragers) and detected the host immune response to the N. ceranae infection under natural conditions. Our studies showed that the Nosema spore load and infection prevalence varied among the different types of adult workers, and both of them increased as honey bees aged: No infection was detected in emergent bees, nurses had a medium spore load and prevalence, while foragers were with the highest Nosema infection level and prevalence. Quantification of the mRNA levels of antimicrobial peptides (abaecin, apidaecin, defensin-1, defensin-2, and hymenoptaecin) and microbial recognition proteins (PGRP-S1, PGRP-S2, PGRP-S3, PGRP-LC, GNBP1-1, and GNBP1-2) confirmed the involvement of the Toll and/or Imd immune pathways in the host response to N. ceranae infection, and revealed an activation of host immune response by N. ceranae infection under natural conditions. Additionally, the levels of immune response were positively correlated with the Nosema spore loads in the infected bees. The information gained from this study will be relevant to the predictive modeling of honey bee disease dynamics for Nosema disease prevention and management.

  7. Conservation in Mammals of Genes Associated with Aggression-Related Behavioral Phenotypes in Honey Bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Hui; Robinson, Gene E; Jakobsson, Eric

    2016-06-01

    The emerging field of sociogenomics explores the relations between social behavior and genome structure and function. An important question is the extent to which associations between social behavior and gene expression are conserved among the Metazoa. Prior experimental work in an invertebrate model of social behavior, the honey bee, revealed distinct brain gene expression patterns in African and European honey bees, and within European honey bees with different behavioral phenotypes. The present work is a computational study of these previous findings in which we analyze, by orthology determination, the extent to which genes that are socially regulated in honey bees are conserved across the Metazoa. We found that the differentially expressed gene sets associated with alarm pheromone response, the difference between old and young bees, and the colony influence on soldier bees, are enriched in widely conserved genes, indicating that these differences have genomic bases shared with many other metazoans. By contrast, the sets of differentially expressed genes associated with the differences between African and European forager and guard bees are depleted in widely conserved genes, indicating that the genomic basis for this social behavior is relatively specific to honey bees. For the alarm pheromone response gene set, we found a particularly high degree of conservation with mammals, even though the alarm pheromone itself is bee-specific. Gene Ontology identification of human orthologs to the strongly conserved honey bee genes associated with the alarm pheromone response shows overrepresentation of protein metabolism, regulation of protein complex formation, and protein folding, perhaps associated with remodeling of critical neural circuits in response to alarm pheromone. We hypothesize that such remodeling may be an adaptation of social animals to process and respond appropriately to the complex patterns of conspecific communication essential for social organization.

  8. Conservation in Mammals of Genes Associated with Aggression-Related Behavioral Phenotypes in Honey Bees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hui Liu

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The emerging field of sociogenomics explores the relations between social behavior and genome structure and function. An important question is the extent to which associations between social behavior and gene expression are conserved among the Metazoa. Prior experimental work in an invertebrate model of social behavior, the honey bee, revealed distinct brain gene expression patterns in African and European honey bees, and within European honey bees with different behavioral phenotypes. The present work is a computational study of these previous findings in which we analyze, by orthology determination, the extent to which genes that are socially regulated in honey bees are conserved across the Metazoa. We found that the differentially expressed gene sets associated with alarm pheromone response, the difference between old and young bees, and the colony influence on soldier bees, are enriched in widely conserved genes, indicating that these differences have genomic bases shared with many other metazoans. By contrast, the sets of differentially expressed genes associated with the differences between African and European forager and guard bees are depleted in widely conserved genes, indicating that the genomic basis for this social behavior is relatively specific to honey bees. For the alarm pheromone response gene set, we found a particularly high degree of conservation with mammals, even though the alarm pheromone itself is bee-specific. Gene Ontology identification of human orthologs to the strongly conserved honey bee genes associated with the alarm pheromone response shows overrepresentation of protein metabolism, regulation of protein complex formation, and protein folding, perhaps associated with remodeling of critical neural circuits in response to alarm pheromone. We hypothesize that such remodeling may be an adaptation of social animals to process and respond appropriately to the complex patterns of conspecific communication essential for

  9. Neonicotinoid-contaminated pollinator strips adjacent to cropland reduce honey bee nutritional status

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mogren, Christina L.; Lundgren, Jonathan G.

    2016-07-01

    Worldwide pollinator declines are attributed to a number of factors, including pesticide exposures. Neonicotinoid insecticides specifically have been detected in surface waters, non-target vegetation, and bee products, but the risks posed by environmental exposures are still not well understood. Pollinator strips were tested for clothianidin contamination in plant tissues, and the risks to honey bees assessed. An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) quantified clothianidin in leaf, nectar, honey, and bee bread at organic and seed-treated farms. Total glycogen, lipids, and protein from honey bee workers were quantified. The proportion of plants testing positive for clothianidin were the same between treatments. Leaf tissue and honey had similar concentrations of clothianidin between organic and seed-treated farms. Honey (mean±SE: 6.61 ± 0.88 ppb clothianidin per hive) had seven times greater concentrations than nectar collected by bees (0.94 ± 0.09 ppb). Bee bread collected from organic sites (25.8 ± 3.0 ppb) had significantly less clothianidin than those at seed treated locations (41.6 ± 2.9 ppb). Increasing concentrations of clothianidin in bee bread were correlated with decreased glycogen, lipid, and protein in workers. This study shows that small, isolated areas set aside for conservation do not provide spatial or temporal relief from neonicotinoid exposures in agricultural regions where their use is largely prophylactic.

  10. Antagonistic interactions between honey bee bacterial symbionts and implications for disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Armstrong Tamieka-Nicole

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Honey bees, Apis mellifera, face many parasites and pathogens and consequently rely on a diverse set of individual and group-level defenses to prevent disease. One route by which honey bees and other insects might combat disease is through the shielding effects of their microbial symbionts. Bees carry a diverse assemblage of bacteria, very few of which appear to be pathogenic. Here we explore the inhibitory effects of these resident bacteria against the primary bacterial pathogen of honey bees, Paenibacillus larvae. Results Here we isolate, culture, and describe by 16S rRNA and protein-coding gene sequences 61 bacterial isolates from honey bee larvae, reflecting a total of 43 distinct bacterial taxa. We culture these bacteria alongside the primary larval pathogen of honey bees, Paenibacillus larvae, and show that many of these isolates severely inhibit the growth of this pathogen. Accordingly, symbiotic bacteria including those described here are plausible natural antagonists toward this widespread pathogen. Conclusion The results suggest a tradeoff in social insect colonies between the maintenance of potentially beneficial bacterial symbionts and deterrence at the individual and colony level of pathogenic species. They also provide a novel mechanism for recently described social components behind disease resistance in insect colonies, and point toward a potential control strategy for an important bee disease.

  11. The Stingless Bee Melipona solani Deposits a Signature Mixture and Methyl Oleate to Mark Valuable Food Sources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alavez-Rosas, David; Malo, Edi A; Guzmán, Miguel A; Sánchez-Guillén, Daniel; Villanueva-Gutiérrez, Rogel; Cruz-López, Leopoldo

    2017-10-01

    Stingless bees foraging for food improve recruitment by depositing chemical cues on valuable food sites or pheromone marks on vegetation. Using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry and bioassays, we showed that Melipona solani foragers leave a mixture composed mostly of long chain hydrocarbons from their abdominal cuticle plus methyl oleate from the labial gland as a scent mark on rich food sites. The composition of hydrocarbons was highly variable among individuals and varied in proportions, depending on the body part. A wide ratio of compounds present in different body parts of the bees elicited electroantennogram responses from foragers and these responses were dose dependent. Generally, in bioassays, these bees prefer to visit previously visited feeders and feeders marked with extracts from any body part of conspecifics. The mean number of visits to a feeder was enhanced when synthetic methyl oleate was added. We propose that this could be a case of multi-source odor marking, in which hydrocarbons, found in large abundance, act as a signature mixture with attraction enhanced through deposition of methyl oleate, which may indicate a rich food source.

  12. Environmental radioactivity and chemical composition of different types of bee honeys produced at in-house area, egypt

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ramadan, A.B.

    2005-01-01

    Environmental radioactivity and chemical composition of bee honey varies with the surrounding environment (major floral and soil contamination), which reflects the nutritional value of honey. 23SU, 232Th, 40K, >37Cs, major elements Na, K, Mg and Cl and trace elements Mn, Fe, Zn, F, I, Cu, Co, Ni and Sr as well as toxic elements Cd and Pb -were all determined in different types of bee honey, which include non-floral honey with artificial feeding (syrup-feed honey) and mono-floral honeys (clover honey or sesame honey or orange honey). These elements were also determined in the bee feeds, which include flowers (clover, sesame and orange) and syrup. The results revealed that of all types of honeys and syrup-feed honey exhibited higher natural radioactivity and higher concentrations ofNa, K, Mg, Cl, oMn, Fe, Co, Cd and Pb than in the other honeys. Orange honey contained the lowest natural radioactivity and element concentrations. Clover honey had the lowest toxic element Cd and Pb concentrations (0.02 and 4.2/xg/g, respectively) while sesame honey contained the highest levels of Cd and F (0.7 and 12.9 /ig/g, respectively). Statistical analysis revealed significant correlation between honey and the feed (R= 0.745 to 0.921). Environmental radioactivity and element concentrations in the honey under study were in the safety baseline levels for human consumption

  13. Queen introduction into the queenright honey bee colony

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonín Přidal

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available One of the actual elementary biologic principles of the introduction of queen is that the recipient co­lo­ny has to be queenless. We accidentally found that a queen can be accepted also in queenright co­lo­ny with using of the queen excluder. Therefore, we conducted two experiments with the introduction of queen in queenright colony.Under defined conditions of the experiment and with application of the queen excluder as a separator of queens we successfully introduced queen in the queenright colony. This result is discussed in relation to the general principle that a queen should be introduced only in a queenless colony. It is possible that there are some exceptions advert to the existence of some unknown biologic patterns in the honey bee biology and pheromones.

  14. Immunogene and viral transcript dynamics during parasitic Varroa destructor mite infection of developing honey bee (Apis mellifera) pupae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuster, Ryan D; Boncristiani, Humberto F; Rueppell, Olav

    2014-05-15

    The ectoparasitic Varroa destructor mite is a major contributor to the ongoing honey bee health crisis. Varroa interacts with honey bee viruses, exacerbating their pathogenicity. In addition to vectoring viruses, immunosuppression of the developing honey bee hosts by Varroa has been proposed to explain the synergy between viruses and mites. However, the evidence for honey bee immune suppression by V. destructor is contentious. We systematically studied the quantitative effects of experimentally introduced V. destructor mites on immune gene expression at five specific time points during the development of the honey bee hosts. Mites reproduced normally and were associated with increased titers of deformed wing virus in the developing bees. Our data on different immune genes show little evidence for immunosuppression of honey bees by V. destructor. Experimental wounding of developing bees increases relative immune gene expression and deformed wing virus titers. Combined, these results suggest that mite feeding activity itself and not immunosuppression may contribute to the synergy between viruses and mites. However, our results also suggest that increased expression of honey bee immune genes decreases mite reproductive success, which may be explored to enhance mite control strategies. Finally, our expression data for multiple immune genes across developmental time and different experimental treatments indicates co-regulation of several of these genes and thus improves our understanding of the understudied honey bee immune system. © 2014. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  15. Population structuring of the ubiquitous stingless bee Tetragonisca angustula in southern Brazil as revealed by microsatellite and mitochondrial markers

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Flávio O.Francisco; Leandro R.Santiago; Yuri M.Mizusawa; Benjamin P.Oldroyd; Maria C.Arias

    2017-01-01

    Tetragonisca angustula is one of the most widespread stingless bees in the Neotropics.This species swarms frequently and is extremely successful in urban environments.In addition,it is one of the most popular stingless bee species for beekeeping in Latin America,so nest transportation and trading is common.Nest transportation can change the genetic structure of the host population,reducing inbreeding and increasing homogenization.Here,we evaluate the genetic structure of 17 geographic populations of T.angustula in southern Brazil to quantify the level of genetic differentiation between populations.Analyses were conducted on partially sequenced mitochondrial genes and 11 microsatellite loci of 1002 workers from 457 sites distributed on the mainland and on 3 islands.Our results show that T.angustula populations are highly differentiated as demon strated by mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and microsatellite markers.Of 73 haplotypes,67 were population-specific.MtDNA diversity was low in 9 populations but microsatellite diversity was moderate to high in all populations.Microsatellite data suggest 10 genetic clusters and low level of gene flow throughout the studied area.However,physical barri ers,such as rivers and mountain ranges,or the presence or absence of forest appear to be unrelated to population clusters.Factors such as low dispersal,different ecological con ditions,and isolation by distance arc most likely shaping the population structure of this species.Thus far,nest transportation has not influenced the general population structure in the studied area.However,due to the genetic structure we found,we recommend that nest transportation should only occur within and between populations that are genetically similar.

  16. Population structuring of the ubiquitous stingless bee Tetragonisca angustula in southern Brazil as revealed by microsatellite and mitochondrial markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Francisco, Flávio O; Santiago, Leandro R; Mizusawa, Yuri M; Oldroyd, Benjamin P; Arias, Maria C

    2017-10-01

    Tetragonisca angustula is one of the most widespread stingless bees in the Neotropics. This species swarms frequently and is extremely successful in urban environments. In addition, it is one of the most popular stingless bee species for beekeeping in Latin America, so nest transportation and trading is common. Nest transportation can change the genetic structure of the host population, reducing inbreeding and increasing homogenization. Here, we evaluate the genetic structure of 17 geographic populations of T. angustula in southern Brazil to quantify the level of genetic differentiation between populations. Analyses were conducted on partially sequenced mitochondrial genes and 11 microsatellite loci of 1002 workers from 457 sites distributed on the mainland and on 3 islands. Our results show that T. angustula populations are highly differentiated as demonstrated by mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and microsatellite markers. Of 73 haplotypes, 67 were population-specific. MtDNA diversity was low in 9 populations but microsatellite diversity was moderate to high in all populations. Microsatellite data suggest 10 genetic clusters and low level of gene flow throughout the studied area. However, physical barriers, such as rivers and mountain ranges, or the presence or absence of forest appear to be unrelated to population clusters. Factors such as low dispersal, different ecological conditions, and isolation by distance are most likely shaping the population structure of this species. Thus far, nest transportation has not influenced the general population structure in the studied area. However, due to the genetic structure we found, we recommend that nest transportation should only occur within and between populations that are genetically similar. © 2016 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  17. Measuring hypopharyngeal gland acinus size in honey bee (Apis mellifera) nurse workers

    Science.gov (United States)

    The nurse worker honey bee hypopharyngeal glands produce the protein fraction of worker and royal jelly fed to developing larvae and queens. These paired glands that are located in the head of the bee are highly sensitive to the quantity and quality of pollen and pollen substitutes that the nurse be...

  18. Monitoring colony-level effects of sublethal pesticide exposure on honey bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    The effects of sublethal pesticide exposure to honey bee colonies may be significant but difficult to detect in the field using standard visual assessment methods. Here we describe methods to measure the quantities of adult bees, brood and food resources by weighing hives and hive parts, by photogra...

  19. The first comprehensive molecular detection of six honey bee viruses in Iran in 2015-2016.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghorani, Mohammadreza; Madadgar, Omid; Langeroudi, Arash Ghalyanchi; Rezapanah, Mohammadreza; Nabian, Sedigheh; Akbarein, Hesameddin; Farahani, Reza Kh; Maghsoudloo, Hossein; Abdollahi, Hamed; Forsi, Mohammad

    2017-08-01

    At least 18 viruses have been reported in the honey bee (Apis mellifera L.). However, severe diseases in honey bees are mainly caused by six viruses, and these are the most important in beekeeping. These viruses include: deformed wing virus (DWV), acute bee paralysis virus (ABPV), chronic bee paralysis virus (CBPV), sacbrood virus (SBV), kashmir bee virus (KBV), and black queen cell virus (BQCV). In this study, we evaluated 89 Iranian honey bee apiaries (during the period 2015-2016) suffering from symptoms of depopulation, sudden collapse, paralysis, or dark coloring, by employing reverse transcription-PCR. Samples were collected from four regions (Mazandaran, Hormozgan, Kurdistan, and Khorasan Razavi) of Iran. Of the 89 apiaries examined, 16 (17.97%), three (3.37%), and three (3.37%) were infected by DWV, ABPV, and CBPV, respectively. The study results for the other viruses (SBV, KBV, and BQCV) were negative. The present study evaluated the presence of the six most important honey bee viruses in bee colonies with suspected infections, and identified remarkable differences in the distribution patterns of the viruses in different geographic regions of Iran.

  20. Honey bees and their products as indicators of environmental pollution: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Salkova

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract. In the present work a literature review of the experiments that explore the use of honey bees and their products as bioindicator of environmental pollution is presented. The greatest number of studies has been carried out on contaminations with heavy metals, followed by pesticides, radionuclides and other substances. Pb, Cd and Zn have been the most looked for metals. Zn and Cd have been mainly deposited on the surface of the bee body while Ni, Cd, Pb and Co have been released with the excrements most often. In all cases of pesticide implementation certain amounts of them have been always accumulated in the bees and their products. According to the researchers, pollutants accumulate in the bees and their products at different extents. Heavy metals and pesticides have been established in the bodies of honey bees in larger quantities in comparison to honey. Most of the authors reported that bee honey is a suitable tool for monitoring pollution with heavy metals and pesticides but the opposite assertions have been also expressed. A suggestion for the presence of a bio-barrier function of the bee organism against contaminators has been forwarded. It has been established that pollen is the most suitable indicator for radioactive pollution. As a whole, the present review shows that bees and their products are suitable models for bio-monitoring of the environmental pollution of different nature.

  1. Are agrochemicals present in high fructose corn syrup fed to honey bees (Apis mellifera L.)?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honey bee colonies are commonly fed high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) as a nectar substitute. Many agrochemicals are applied to corn during cultivation including systemic neonicotinoids. Whether agrochemicals are present in HFCS fed to bees is unknown. Samples from the major manufacturers and distri...

  2. Modelling collective foraging by means of individual behaviour rules in honey-bees

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vries, Han de; Biesmeijer, J.C.

    1998-01-01

    An individual-oriented model is constructed which simulates the collective foraging behaviour of a colony of honey-bees, Apis mellifera. Each bee follows the same set of behavioural rules. Each rule consists of a set of conditions followed by the behavioural act to be performed if the

  3. Modelling collective foraging by means of individual behaviour rules in honey-bees

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Vries, H; Biesmeijer, JC

    1998-01-01

    An individual-oriented model is constructed which simulates the collective foraging behaviour of a colony of honey-bees, Apis mellifera. Each bee follows the same set of behavioural rules. Each rule consists of a set of conditions followed by the behavioural act to be performed if the conditions are

  4. Influence of feeding bee colonies on colony strenght and honey authenticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreja KANDOLF BOROVŠAK

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available For the natural development of bee colonies, there is the need for appropriate nutrition. Lack of natural honey flow must be supplemented by feeding bee colonies with sugar syrups or candy paste. This supplementary feeding encourages brood breeding and forage activity, whereby stronger colonies collect more honey. Sugar syrups can cause honey adulteration, which is more frequent with the reversing of the brood combs with the bee food, with the combs moved from the brood chamber to the upper chamber. Authentication of honey from the standpoint of the presence of sugar syrup is very complex, because there is no single method by which honey adulteration can be reliably confirmed. Feeding the colonies in spring should result in stronger colonies and hence the collection of more honey in the brood chambers. The objective of the present study was to determine whether this has effects also on honey authenticity, and to discover a simple method for detection of honey adulteration. The colonies were fed with candy paste that had added yeast and blue dye, to provide markers for detection of honey adulteration. The strength of the colonies and quantity of honey in the brood chambers were monitored. The results of the analysis of stable isotope and activity of foreign enzymes were compared with the results of yeast quantity and colour of the honey (absorbance, L*, a*, b* parameters. Detection of yeast in the honey samples and presence of colour as a consequence of added dye appear to be appropriate methods to follow honey adulteration, and further studies are ongoing.

  5. A Push-pull Protocol to Reduce Colonization of Bird Nest Boxes by Honey Bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Efstathion, Caroline A; Kern, William H

    2016-09-04

    Introduction of the invasive Africanized honey bee (AHB) into the Neotropics is a serious problem for many cavity nesting birds, specifically parrots. These bees select cavities that are suitable nest sites for birds, resulting in competition. The difficulty of removing bees and their defensive behavior makes a prevention protocol necessary. Here, we describe a push-pull integrated pest management protocol to deter bees from inhabiting bird boxes by applying a bird safe insecticide, permethrin, to repel bees from nest boxes, while simultaneously attracting them to pheromone-baited swarm traps. Shown here is an example experiment using Barn Owl nest boxes. This protocol successfully reduced colonization of Barn Owl nest boxes by Africanized honey bees. This protocol is flexible, allowing adjustments to accommodate a wide range of bird species and habitats. This protocol could benefit conservation efforts where AHB are located.

  6. Nutritional aspects of honey bee-collected pollen and constraints on colony development in the eastern Mediterranean

    OpenAIRE

    Shafir, S.; Avni, D.; Hendriksma, H.; Dag, A.; Uni, Z.; Avni, Dorit; Hendriksma, Harmen; Dag, Arnon; Uni, Zehava; Shafir, Sharoni

    2014-01-01

    Pollen is the main protein and lipid source for honey bees (Apis mellifera), and nutritionally impoverished landscapes pose a threat to colony development. To determine colony nutritional demands, we analyzed a yearly cycle of bee-collected pollen from colonies in the field and compared it to colony worker production and honey bee body composition, for the first time in social insects. We monitored monthly bee production in ten colonies at each of seven sites throughout Israel, and trapped po...

  7. The antiquity and evolutionary history of social behavior in bees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophie Cardinal

    Full Text Available A long-standing controversy in bee social evolution concerns whether highly eusocial behavior has evolved once or twice within the corbiculate Apidae. Corbiculate bees include the highly eusocial honey bees and stingless bees, the primitively eusocial bumble bees, and the predominantly solitary or communal orchid bees. Here we use a model-based approach to reconstruct the evolutionary history of eusociality and date the antiquity of eusocial behavior in apid bees, using a recent molecular phylogeny of the Apidae. We conclude that eusociality evolved once in the common ancestor of the corbiculate Apidae, advanced eusociality evolved independently in the honey and stingless bees, and that eusociality was lost in the orchid bees. Fossil-calibrated divergence time estimates reveal that eusociality first evolved at least 87 Mya (78 to 95 Mya in the corbiculates, much earlier than in other groups of bees with less complex social behavior. These results provide a robust new evolutionary framework for studies of the organization and genetic basis of social behavior in honey bees and their relatives.

  8. Honey bees and their products as indicators of environmental radioactive pollution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tonelli, D.; Gattavecchia, E.; Ghini, S.; Porrini, C.; Celli, G.; Mercuri, A.M.

    1990-01-01

    Samples of honey, pollen and honey bees were collected in some regions of Italy after the Chernobyl accident, and subjected to gamma spectrometry in order to assess their possible use as markers of the radioactive environmental contamination. Pollen proved to be the best indicator, since it reflects exactly the air contamination and therefore it is suitable for obtaining a map of fallout. Also bees can be used for this purpose, even if their collection is more difficult, whereas honey gives only an indication. (author) 13 refs.; 4 figs.; 2 tabs

  9. Honey bees and their products as indicators of environmental radioactive pollution

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tonelli, D; Gattavecchia, E; Ghini, S [Bologna Univ. (Italy). Ist. di Scienze Chimiche; Porrini, C; Celli, G [Bologna Univ. (Italy). Ist. di Entomologia ' Guido Grandi' ; Mercuri, A M [Modena Univ. (Italy). Ist. Botanico

    1990-08-01

    Samples of honey, pollen and honey bees were collected in some regions of Italy after the Chernobyl accident, and subjected to gamma spectrometry in order to assess their possible use as markers of the radioactive environmental contamination. Pollen proved to be the best indicator, since it reflects exactly the air contamination and therefore it is suitable for obtaining a map of fallout. Also bees can be used for this purpose, even if their collection is more difficult, whereas honey gives only an indication. (author) 13 refs.; 4 figs.; 2 tabs.

  10. Effects of pollen dilution on infection of Nosema ceranae in honey bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jack, Cameron J; Uppala, Sai Sree; Lucas, Hannah M; Sagili, Ramesh R

    2016-04-01

    Multiple stressors are currently threatening honey bee health, including pests and pathogens. Among honey bee pathogens, Nosema ceranae is a microsporidian found parasitizing the western honey bee (Apis mellifera) relatively recently. Honey bee colonies are fed pollen or protein substitute during pollen dearth to boost colony growth and immunity against pests and pathogens. Here we hypothesize that N. ceranae intensity and prevalence will be low in bees receiving high pollen diets, and that honey bees on high pollen diets will have higher survival and/or increased longevity. To test this hypothesis we examined the effects of different quantities of pollen on (a) the intensity and prevalence of N. ceranae and (b) longevity and nutritional physiology of bees inoculated with N. ceranae. Significantly higher spore intensities were observed in treatments that received higher pollen quantities (1:0 and 1:1 pollen:cellulose) when compared to treatments that received relatively lower pollen quantities. There were no significant differences in N. ceranae prevalence among different pollen diet treatments. Interestingly, the bees in higher pollen quantity treatments also had significantly higher survival despite higher intensities of N. ceranae. Significantly higher hypopharyngeal gland protein was observed in the control (no Nosema infection, and receiving a diet of 1:0 pollen:cellulose), followed by 1:0 pollen:cellulose treatment that was inoculated with N. ceranae. Here we demonstrate that diet with higher pollen quantity increases N. ceranae intensity, but also enhances the survival or longevity of honey bees. The information from this study could potentially help beekeepers formulate appropriate protein feeding regimens for their colonies to mitigate N. ceranae problems. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  11. Odor information transfer in the stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata: effect of in-hive experiences on classical conditioning of proboscis extension.

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    Mc Cabe, Sofía I; Farina, Walter M

    2009-02-01

    A recent study showed that the stingless bee Melipona quadrifasciata could learn to discriminate odors in a classical conditioning of proboscis extension response (PER). Here we used this protocol to investigate the ability of these bees to use olfactory information obtained within the colony in an experimental context: the PER paradigm. We compared their success in solving a classical differential conditioning depending on the previous olfactory experiences received inside the nest. We found that M. quadrifasciata bees are capable of transferring the food-odor information acquired in the colony to a differential conditioning in the PER paradigm. Bees attained higher discrimination levels when they had previously encountered the rewarded odor associated to food inside the hive. The increase in the discrimination levels, however, was in some cases unspecific to the odor used indicating a certain degree of generalization. The influence of the food scent offered at a field feeder 24 h before the classical conditioning could also be seen in the discrimination attained by the foragers in the PER setup, detecting the presence of long-term memory. Moreover, the improved performance of recruited bees in the PER paradigm suggests the occurrence of social learning of nectar scents inside the stingless bees' hives.

  12. Rapid Determination of Major Compounds in the Ethanol Extract of Geopropolis from Malaysian Stingless Bees, Heterotrigona itama, by UHPLC-Q-TOF/MS and NMR.

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    Zhao, Lingling; Yu, Mengjiao; Sun, Minghui; Xue, Xiaofeng; Wang, Tongtong; Cao, Wei; Sun, Liping

    2017-11-10

    A reliable, rapid analytical method was established for the characterization of constituents of the ethanol extract of geopropolis (EEGP) produced by Malaysian stingless bees- Heterotrigona itama -by combining ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography with quadruple time-of-flight mass spectrometry (UHPLC-Q-TOF/MS). Based on known standards, the online METLIN database, and published literature, 28 compounds were confirmed. Phenolic acids, flavones, triterpenes and phytosterol were identified or tentatively identified using characteristic diagnostic fragment ions. The results indicated that terpenoids were the main components of EEGP, accompanied by low levels of phenolic acids, flavonoids, and phytosterol. Two major components were further purified by preparative high-performance liquid chromatography (PHPLC) and identified by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) as 24( E )-cycloart-24-ene-26-ol-3-one and 20-hydroxy-24-dammaren-3-one. These two triterpenes, confirmed in this geopropolis for the first time, are potential chemical markers for the identification of geopropolis from Malaysian stingless bees, H. itama .

  13. Two Novel Strains of Torulaspora delbrueckii Isolated from the Honey Bee Microbiome and Their Use in Honey Fermentation

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    Joseph P. Barry

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Yeasts are ubiquitous microbes found in virtually all environments. Many yeast species can ferment sugar into ethanol and CO2, and humans have taken advantage of these characteristics to produce fermented beverages for thousands of years. As a naturally abundant source of fermentable sugar, honey has had a central role in such fermentations since Neolithic times. However, as beverage fermentation has become industrialized, the processes have been streamlined, including the narrow and almost exclusive usage of yeasts in the genus Saccharomyces for fermentation. We set out to identify wild honey- or honey-bee-related yeasts that can be used in honey fermentation. Here, we isolated two strains of Torulaspora delbrueckii from the gut of a locally collected honey bee. Both strains were able to ferment honey sugar into mead but failed to metabolize more than a modest amount of wort sugar in trial beer fermentations. Further, the meads fermented by the T. delbrueckii strains displayed better sensory characteristics than mead fermented by a champagne yeast. The combination of T. delbrueckii and champagne yeast strains was also able to rapidly ferment honey at an industrial scale. Thus, wild yeasts represent a largely untapped reservoir for the introduction of desirable sensory characteristics in fermented beverages such as mead.

  14. The Spatial Information Content of the Honey Bee Waggle Dance

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    Roger eSchürch

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available In 1954, Haldane and Spurway published a paper in which they discussed the information content of the honey bee waggle dance with regard to the ideas of Norbert Wiener, who had recently developed a formal theory of information. We return to this concept by reanalyzing the information content in both vector components (direction, distance of the waggle dance using recent empirical data from a study that investigated the accuracy of the dance. Our results show that the direction component conveys 2.9 bits and the distance component 4.5 bits of information, which agrees to some extent with Haldane and Spurway's estimates that were based on data gathered by von Frisch. Of course, these are small amounts of information compared to what can be conveyed, given enough time, by human language, or compared to what is routinely transferred via the internet. Nevertheless, small amounts of information can be very valuable if it is the right information. The receivers of this information, the nestmate bees, know how to react adaptively so that the value of the information is not negated by its low information content.

  15. Unequal subfamily proportions among honey bee queen and worker brood

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    Tilley; Oldroyd

    1997-12-01

    Queens from three colonies of feral honey bees, Apis mellifera were removed and placed in separate nucleus colonies. For each colony, eggs and larvae were taken from the nucleus and placed in the main hive on each of 3-4 consecutive weeks. Workers in the queenless parts selected young larvae to rear as queens. Queen pupae, together with the surrounding worker pupae, were removed from each colony and analysed at two to three microsatellite loci to determine their paternity. In all three colonies, the paternity of larvae chosen by the bees to rear as queens was not a random sample of the paternities in the worker brood, with certain subfamilies being over-represented in queens. These results support an important prediction of kin selection theory: when colonies are queenless, unequal relatedness within colonies could lead to the evolution of reproductive competition, that is some subfamilies achieving greater reproductive success than others. The mechanism by which such dominance is achieved could be through a system of kin recognition and nepotism, but we conclude that genetically based differential attractiveness of larvae for rearing as queens is more likely.Copyright 1997 The Association for the Study of Animal BehaviourCopyright 1997The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.

  16. Colony Level Prevalence and Intensity of Nosema ceranae in Honey Bees (Apis mellifera L.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, Hannah M.; Webster, Thomas C.; Sagili, Ramesh R.

    2016-01-01

    Nosema ceranae is a widely prevalent microsporidian parasite in the western honey bee. There is considerable uncertainty regarding infection dynamics of this important pathogen in honey bee colonies. Understanding the infection dynamics at the colony level may aid in development of a reliable sampling protocol for N. ceranae diagnosis, and provide insights into efficient treatment strategies. The primary objective of this study was to characterize the prevalence (proportion of the sampled bees found infected) and intensity (number of spores per bee) of N. ceranae infection in bees from various age cohorts in a colony. We examined N. ceranae infection in both overwintered colonies that were naturally infected with N. ceranae and in quadruple cohort nucleus colonies that were established and artificially inoculated with N. ceranae. We also examined and quantified effects of N. ceranae infection on hypopharyngeal gland protein content and gut pH. There was no correlation between the prevalence and intensity of N. ceranae infection in composite samples (pooled bee samples used for analysis). Our results indicated that the prevalence and intensity of N. ceranae infection is significantly influenced by honey bee age. The N. ceranae infection prevalence values from composite samples of background bees (unmarked bees collected from four different locations in a colony) were not significantly different from those pertaining to marked-bee age cohorts specific to each sampling date. The foraging-aged bees had a higher prevalence of N. ceranae infection when compared to nurse-aged bees. N. ceranae did not have a significant effect on hypopharyngeal gland protein content. Further, there was no significant difference in mean gut pH of N. ceranae infected bees and non-infected bees. This study provides comprehensive insights into N. ceranae infection dynamics at the colony level, and also demonstrates the effects of N. ceranae infection on hypopharyngeal gland protein content and

  17. Colony Level Prevalence and Intensity of Nosema ceranae in Honey Bees (Apis mellifera L..

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cameron J Jack

    Full Text Available Nosema ceranae is a widel