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Volume 31, Number 3, May-june 2000
Page(s) 443 - 452
DOI: 10.1051/apido:2000135

Apidologie 31 (2000) 443-452

Hybridization between European and Africanized honeybees in tropical Yucatan, Mexico. II. Morphometric, allozymic and mitochondrial DNA variability in feral colonies

José Javier G. Quezada-Euáun

Facultad de Medicina Veterinaria y Zootecnia, Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán, Apdo. Postal 4-116, Mérida, Yucatan 97100, Mexico

(Received 10 December 1998; revised 11 January 2000; accepted 24 January 2000)


This paper presents the results of a long-term study on the genetic status of feral Yucatecan honey bees combining analyses of morphological, allozyme and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) characters. The results showed that feral Yucatecan colonies had varying degrees of association between European/African morphology, allozymes and haplotypes. Frequencies of European markers varied between years, but markers (polymorphisms) of European origin were present in the Yucatecan feral population in frequencies that indicate a process of European/African hybridization. These data suggest that population size, environmental conditions and characteristics of the established feral population in Yucatan have provided quantitative and qualitative opportunities for European gene introgression in the feral population, and thus better explain the present genetic composition of feral Africanized honeybees in southeast Mexico.

Keywords: Apis mellifera / Africanized honeybee / hybridization / mtDNA / morphology / allozyme / Yucatan

Correspondence and reprints: José Javier G. Quezada-Euáun

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