Apidologie

, Volume 44, Issue 5, pp 537–546

Stingless bees, Melipona fasciculata, as efficient pollinators of eggplant (Solanum melongena) in greenhouses

  • Patrícia Nunes-Silva
  • Michael Hrncir
  • Cláudia Inês da Silva
  • Yara Sbrolin Roldão
  • Vera Lucia Imperatriz-Fonseca
Original article

DOI: 10.1007/s13592-013-0204-y

Cite this article as:
Nunes-Silva, P., Hrncir, M., da Silva, C.I. et al. Apidologie (2013) 44: 537. doi:10.1007/s13592-013-0204-y

Abstract

Detailed studies of the behavior of pollinators allow insights into pollination mechanisms and may indicate which pollinators are more efficient for a particular plant species. Our aim was to evaluate if Melipona fasciculata is an efficient pollinator of eggplant (Solanum melongena L., Solanaceae) in greenhouses. We analyzed (1) the colony foraging pattern of M. fasciculata in greenhouses, (2) the behavior of bees during the visits to flowers, and (3) fruit set and fruit quality after different pollination treatments (hand pollination: autogamy, geitonogamy, xenogamy; bee pollination). Our results show that M. fasciculata is an efficient pollinator of eggplants and, consequently, may be a viable alternative to bumblebees in Brazil.

Keywords

Melipona fasciculata stingless bee eggplant Solanum melongena pollination 

Copyright information

© INRA, DIB and Springer-Verlag France 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patrícia Nunes-Silva
    • 1
  • Michael Hrncir
    • 2
  • Cláudia Inês da Silva
    • 1
  • Yara Sbrolin Roldão
    • 1
  • Vera Lucia Imperatriz-Fonseca
    • 2
  1. 1.Departamento de Biologia, Faculdade de Filosofia, Ciências e Letras de Ribeirão PretoUniversidade de São PauloRibeirão PretoBrazil
  2. 2.Departamento de Ciências AnimaisUniversidade Federal Rural do Semi-ÁridoMossoróBrazil