Free access
Volume 38, Number 1, January-February 2007
Page(s) 38 - 46
Published online 15 December 2006
Apidologie 38 (2007) 38-46
DOI: 10.1051/apido:2006052

Cephalic and Dufour gland secretions of Scaptotrigona mexicana queens: Chemical composition and biological activity

Julieta Grajales-Conesaa, Julio C. Rojasa, Miguel Guzmán-Díaza, Manuel Rincón-Rabanalesb and Leopoldo Cruz-Lópeza

a  El Colegio de la Frontera Sur, Unidad Tapachula. Carr. Ant. Aeropuerto, Km.2.5, AP. 36. CP 30700, Tapachula, Chiapas, Mexico
b  Universidad Autónoma de Chiapas, Departamento de Biotecnología, Tapachula, Chiapas, Mexico

(Received 21 November 2005 - Revised 10 May 2006 - Accepted 31 May 2006 - Published online 15 December 2006)

Abstract - Cephalic and Dufour gland secretions of virgin and physogastric queens of Scaptotrigona mexicana were analyzed by GC-MS. Worker responses to extracts and selected compounds identified in these secretions were evaluated in experimental hives. Cephalic secretions of virgin queens and 1-month-old physogastric queens are constituted of 2-ketones, 2-alcohols and esters, while the cephalic secretions of 1-year-old physogastric queens are constituted of 2-alcohols and esters. Dufour gland secretions from virgin queens are mainly constituted of 2-alcohols, ketones, hydrocarbons and esters, while Dufour gland secretions from physogastric queens are mainly constituted of esters, where hexyl hexanoate is the major compound. Workers were significantly attracted to natural extracts and synthetic blends of selected compounds of the 1-year-old physogastric queen cephalic secretion as well as to a blend of enantiomeric 2-alcohols. Dufour gland secretion was not attractive to workers.

Key words: Scaptotrigona mexicana / queens / cephalic secretions / Dufour gland / stingless bees / Apidae

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© INRA, DIB-AGIB, EDP Sciences 2007