Open Access
Volume 38, Number 3, May-June 2007
Page(s) 230 - 237
Published online 07 March 2007
Apidologie 38 (2007) 230-237
DOI: 10.1051/apido:2007003

The influence of season and volatile compounds on the acceptance of introduced European honey bee (Apis mellifera) Queens into European and Africanized colonies

Gloria DeGrandi-Hoffmana, David Gilleya and Judith Hooperb, c

a  Carl Hayden Bee Research Center, USDA-ARS, 2000 East Allen Road, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA
b  Pima Research, PO Box 65626, Tucson, AZ 85728, USA
c  ARL Division of Neurobiology, University of Arizona, PO Box 210077, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA

(Received 27 June 2006 - Revised 28 September 2006 - Accepted 28 September 2006 - Published online 7 March 2007)

Abstract - Mated European honey bee (Apis mellifera) queens were introduced into Africanized and European colonies to determine if acceptance rates differed. Prior to introduction, volatile compounds emitted by queens were collected. More queens were accepted by European colonies compared with Africanized. The highest supersedure rate occurred in Africanized colonies during summer introductions. Queen acceptance did not differ between European and Africanized colonies during spring or fall introductions. E-ß-ocimene was the only compound consistently detected in queens prior to their introduction, and was present in lower amounts in queens that were rejected within the first week of their introduction. The best time to introduce European queens appears to be in the fall when overall rejection rates are the lowest.

Key words: honeybee queen / Africanized bee / pheromone / E-ß-ocimene / queen acceptance / Apis mellifera

Corresponding author:

© INRA, DIB-AGIB, EDP Sciences 2007