Pollen diet for in vitro rearing of africanized honey bee larvae, Apis mellifera (Hymenoptera: Apidae)
Keywords:Larval nutrition, Larval survivorship, Larval development, Hemolymph proteins.
AbstractPollen is the major protein source for honey bees, Apis mellifera. It is essential for the adults to produce royal jelly to feed the larvae. Young larvae receive the brood food, whereas the older (over 3 days old) larvae receive pollen in addition to brood food. The nutritional value of pollen has been investigated only in adults or at the colony level. Protocols for rearing Africanized honey bee larvae in vitro using diets with mixtures of pollen had not been established. We examined different concentrations (2.5, 5 and 10%) of two mixtures of pollen in the larval diet. The effects of pollen diets on larval development were assessed. The survival and development of larvae fed with 10% pollen was impaired; this concentration should be avoided. Concentrations of 2.5 and 5% pollen did not show significant changes in survival, weight, development or the hemolymph protein profile when compared to the controls (without pollen). However, differences in larval survival were observed between the two pollen mixtures (pollen blends 1 and 2), suggesting that a diet with a superior digestibility and greater familial diversity of pollen (blend 2) is more nutritionally adequate.
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Copyright (c) 2014 Juliana Azevedo Veloso, Anete Pedro Lourenço
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