Flight Activity of USDA–ARS Russian Honey Bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae) During Pollination of Lowbush Blueberries in Maine
Authors: Danka, Robert G.; Beaman, Lorraine D.
Source: Journal of Economic Entomology, Volume 100, Number 2, April 2007 , pp. 267-272(6)
Publisher: Entomological Society of America
Abstract:Flight activity was compared in colonies of Russian honey bees, Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera: Apidae), and Italian bees during commercial pollination of lowbush blueberries (principally Vaccinium angustifolium Aiton) in Washington Co., ME, in late May and early June in 2003 and 2004. Colonies of the two stocks were managed equally in Louisiana during autumn through early spring preceding observations in late spring each year. Resulting average populations of adult bees and of brood were similar in colonies of the two bee stocks during pollination. Flight during pollination was monitored hourly on 6 d each year by counting bees exiting each colony per minute; counts were made manually with flight cones on 17 colonies per stock in 2003 and electronically with ApiSCAN-Plus counters on 20 colonies per stock in 2004. Analysis of variance showed that temperature, colony size (population of adult bees or brood), and the interaction of these effects were the strongest regulators of flight activity in both years. Russian and Italian bees had similar flight activity at any given colony size, temperature, or time of day. Flight increased linearly with rising temperatures and larger colony sizes. Larger colonies, however, were more responsive than smaller colonies across the range of temperatures measured. In 2003, flight responses to varying temperatures were less in the afternoon and evening (1500–1959 hours) than they were earlier in the day. Russian colonies had flight activity that was suitable for late spring pollination of lowbush blueberries.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: April 2007
- Journal of Economic Entomology is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December. The journal publishes articles on the economic significance of insects and is divided into the following sections: apiculture & social insects; arthropods in relation to plant disease; forum; insecticide resistance and resistance management; ecotoxicology; biological and microbial control; ecology and behavior; sampling and biostatistics; household and structural insects; medical entomology; molecular entomology; veterinary entomology; forest entomology; horticultural entomology; field and forage crops, and small grains; stored-product; commodity treatment and quarantine entomology; and plant resistance. In addition to research papers, Journal of Economic Entomology publishes Letters to the Editor, interpretive articles in a Forum section, Short Communications, Rapid Communications, and Book Reviews.
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