Free Access
Volume 25, Number 6, 1994
Page(s) 566 - 578
Apidologie 25 (1994) 566-578
DOI: 10.1051/apido:19940607

The effect of the age of the honey bee (Apis mellifera L) queen on worker population, swarming and honey yields in a subtropical climate

H. Hauser and Y. Lensky

Triwaks Bee Research Center, Hebrew University, Faculty of Agriculture, 76100 Rehovot, Israel

Abstract - In a study carried out in the subtropics, we found that brood areas, worker populations and honey yields were higher, and less swarm queen cells were constructed, in colonies headed by 7-to 10-month-old queens than in those headed by up to 20-month-old queens during the nectar flow season. There was a significant effect of seasonal conditions on the number of queen cups constructed but not on that of swarm queen cells. Neither brood area nor worker population affected construction of the 2 kinds of cells in uncongested colonies. The queen's age and the season affect honey yields through the population level of workers.

Key words: queen bee / ageing / swarming / population / population dynamics / Israel