, Volume 27, Issue 5, pp 919-926

Task-Related Chemical Analysis of Labial Gland Volatile Secretion in Worker Honeybees (Apis mellifera ligustica)

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Chemical analyses revealed that the labial gland complex of worker honeybees possesses a series of hydrocarbons dominated by odd-numbered carbon chain alkanes along with minor amounts of alkenes and branched alkanes. Foragers contained significantly more secretion than nurse bees. Experiments with bees from colonies induced to have a division of labor independent of age revealed that the differences in the amount of secretion were task, but not age dependent.