Volume 5, Issue 3      July - September, 2017

Effect of queen age on hygienic and grooming behavior of Apis mellifera Ligustica against Varroa destructor (Anderson and Trueman)

Saboor Ahmad, Muhammad Asif Aziz, Munir Ahmad, Imran Bodlah

Department of Entomology, PMAS Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi, Pakistan



The studies were conducted to compare the hygienic and grooming behavior of honey bees (Apis mellifera Ligustica) headed by new (0-year) and old queens (1-year) against Varroa mites at Apiculture Research Farm, PMAS-Arid Agriculture University Rawalpindi during 2013-14. Worker bees removed 91.56, 95.11 and 98.52 % dead brood in colonies headed by new queens, while 75.22, 82.78 and 88.78%, in colonies headed by old queens; after 24, 48 and 72 h, respectively. Similarly, significant differences were observed regarding the removal of artificially introduced Varroa mites between both types of colonies; bees in colonies headed by new queens removed 74.67 and 84.67%, while the bees headed by old queens removed 52.67 and 66.67% artificially introduced Varroa mites from brood cells after 5 and 7 days, respectively. The  mean percentage of  leg deformed Varroa mites due to grooming behavior of adult bees in colonies with new and old queens was 67.45 and 57.83%, and mites with deformed dorsal shield was 27.03% and 20.71%, respectively. Colonies with new queens exhibited better hygienic and grooming behavior against the Varroa mite as compared to those having old queens. Replacing old queens with new queens every year is suggested for better management of Varroa mite in Pothwar region of Punjab.

 Keywords: Hygienic behavior, Apis mellifera Ligustica, Varroa mite, Pothwar, Punjab

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