Free Access
Volume 34, Number 6, November-December 2003
Page(s) 597 - 602
Apidologie 34 (2003) 597-602
DOI: 10.1051/apido:2003055

A method to feed individual bees (Hymenoptera: Apiformes) known amounts of pesticides

Edith Ladurnera, Jordi Boschb, Stefano Mainia and William P. Kempc

a  Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Agroambientali, Università di Bologna, 40126 Bologna, Italy
b  Biology Department, Utah State University, Logan, UT 84322-5310, USA
c  USDA-ARS, Bee Biology & Systematics Laboratory, Logan, UT 84322-5310, USA

(Received 10 October 2002; revised 1 February 2003; accepted 16 May 2003)

We devised a simple method ("flower") to feed bees individually, and compared it with two other methods commonly used ("film canister" and "glass vial"). We tested the three methods on two solitary species, Osmia lignaria and Megachile rotundata, and one social species, Apis mellifera, under four different light regimes (natural, artificial, plant growth and darkness). The flower method was the most effective for all three bee species: 90-95% of the bees fed under natural light, 80-95% under artificial light, 75-100% under plant growth light, and 45-70% in darkness. Percent success was 0-50% with the film canister method, and 0-60% with the glass vial method. The flower method may allow more comprehensive future evaluation of pesticide effects on bees.

Key words: oral toxicity test / individual feeding / Osmia lignaria / Apis mellifera / Megachile rotundata

Correspondence and reprints: Jordi Bosch

© INRA, EDP Sciences, DIB, AGIB 2003