Free access
Volume 34, Number 5, September-October 2003
Page(s) 449 - 455
Apidologie 34 (2003) 449-455
DOI: 10.1051/apido:2003045

Testis length distinguishes haploid from diploid drones in Melipona quadrifasciata (Hymenoptera: Meliponinae)

Mara Garcia Tavares, André Southernman Teixeira Irsigler and Lucio Antonio De Oliveira Campos

Departamento de Biologia Geral, Universidade Federal de Viçosa, 36571-000, Viçosa, MG, Brazil
(Received 19 November 2001; revised 30 May 2002; accepted 26 February 2003)

Testes length in diploid and haploid larvae drones of Melipona quadrifasciata were investigated to ascertain whether it is a good character to distinguish haploid from diploid drones. Two groups of haploid and two groups of diploid drones were compared. The results show that diploid males have shorter testes than haploid males. Another interesting observation was that whereas diploid males from different groups had testes of similar sizes, haploid males produced by different queens had testes which differed significantly in size. It is suggested that measurements of the testes length could be used to determine ploidy and contribute to the understanding of the population biology of this and other related Hymenoptera species.

Key words: Melipona quadrifasciata / stingless bee / diploid drone / testicule

Correspondence and reprints: Mara Garcia Tavares

© INRA, EDP Sciences, DIB, AGIB 2003