Distribution and variation of size of Apis florea F in IranF. Ruttnera, M.S. Mossadeghb and D. Kauhausen-Kellerc
a Institut für Bienenkunde (Polytechnische Gesellschaft), JW Goethe Universität Frankfurt am Main, D-61440 Oberursel, Germany
b Department of Entomology, College of Agriculture, Shahid Chamran University, Ahwaz, Iran
c Länderinstitut für Bienenkunde, Fr Engelsstr 32, D-16540 Hohen Neuendorf, Germany
Abstract - Fifteen samples of Apis florea worker bees were collected from nests found in Iranian provinces near the Persian Gulf, up to more than 33° north and to 1 900 m altitude. This indicates a wider range of ecological adaptability than had previously been assumed. A south-north geocline exists in size characteristics over about the same range as for A mellifera. The vertical ecocline, although present, was only partial and rather irregular. No climate-related variation in hair length was found in the species. The data are discussed in view of the rudimentary thermoregulation and possible seasonal migration behavior in A florea.
Key words: Apis florea / Iran / Apis mellifera yemenitica / geographic variation / cline