Free Access
Volume 30, Number 5, 1999
Page(s) 367 - 374
Apidologie 30 (1999) 367-374
DOI: 10.1051/apido:19990502

Influence of body fluid from pin-killed honey bee pupae on hygienic behavior

Kátia Peres Gramachoa, Lionel Segui Gonçalvesa, Peter Rosenkranzb and David De Jongc

a  Biology Departament, Faculty of Philosophy, Science and Letters of Ribeirao Preto, University of Sao Paulo, 14040-901 Ribeirao Preto, SP, Brazil
b  Universität Hohenheim, Landesanstalt für Bienenkunde, August-von-Hartmann Straße 13, 70593 Stuttgart, Germany
c  Genetics Department, Faculty of Medicine, University of São Paulo, 14049-900 Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil

Abstract - Hygienic behavior in honey bees can be tested by piercing the brood with a pin; however, there is concern that variability in the quantity of fluids that leaks from the pupae could influence test results. Colonies of Apis mellifera carnica were tested to evaluate this possibility. We made four repetitions of four treatments and one control in each of three colonies. The order of degree of hygienic behavior was: pin-killed capped worker brood with a drop of body fluid injected underneath the cell capping > pin-killed capped worker brood > undamaged capped brood with a drop of body fluid injected underneath the cell capping > control or a drop of pupal body fluid placed on the cell cappings. All of the differences were significant (Tukey test, P < 0.05) except the body fluid on the cell cap, which gave the same results as the control. The addition, inside worker brood cells, of pupal body fluid had a significant effect on honey bee hygienic behavior, both in normal brood and in pin-killed brood. © Inra/DIB/AGIB/Elsevier, Paris

Key words: Apis mellifera carnica / hygienic behavior / body fluid / pin-killing method