Fluctuating Asymmetry in Melipona scutellaris (L.) 1811 (Hymenoptera: Apidae) Associated to Stress due to Transportation of Colonies

Brunelle Ramos Andrade, Eliaber Barros Santos, Lorena Andrade Nunes, Andreia Santos do Nascimento, Carlos Alfredo Lopes de Carvalho


Transportation to long distances and handling of colonies can affect development and survival conditions of bees. Our study investigated the stress intensity of individuals of Melipona scutellaris Latreille, 1811, due to transportation of colonies to long distances, within the natural range of the species. We used 746 bee workers. The right and left forewings were removed and measured using 15 landmarks in vein insertions. Individuals were divided into four groups: (1) workers collected at the origin site, (2) workers emerged at the place of destination in pupal stage during transportation, (3) workers emerged at the destination site in the 3rd instar of larval stage during transportation, and (4) workers collected after three months of colony establishment at the destination site. The Procrustes ANOVA showed significant results as well as the presence of Fluctuating Asymmetry (FA) in all treatments for the shape of wings (P<0.01). However, in the comparison of groups using the One-Way ANOVA, only workers that emerged at the destination site in the 3rd instar of larval stage during transportation (Group 3) significantly differentiated (P<0.05) from the others, with a higher FA index. The larval stage underwent more stress due to colony transportation. Beekeepers should take good care of colonies during transportation in order to minimize damages to workers to prevent quality loss of services and products offered by bees.


stingless bee; migrating meliponiculture;shape

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13102/sociobiology.v67i3.4987


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