Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology

, Volume 34, Issue 1, pp 25–30 | Cite as

Task specialization in a wild bee, Apis florea (Hymenoptera: Apidae), revealed by RFLP banding

  • Benjamin P. Oldroyd
  • H. Allen Sylvester
  • Siriwat Wongsiri
  • Thomas E. Rinderer


Workers in a wild in situ colony of the dwarf honey bee, Apis florea, were observed undertaking the following behavior: liquid foraging, pollen foraging, guarding, stinging, fanning and wagging abdomen. Bees of each behavioral class were separately collected and frozen. Collections were made over a period of 10 days. Random samples of brood and workers were also collected. DNA was extracted from each bee and “fingerprinted” using a probe of unknown sequence obtained from an A. mellifera genomic library. Patterns of fingerprints (Fig. 1) were dissimilar among behavioral classes (Tables 1 and 2), strongly suggesting a genetic component to division of labor in this species. This result supports similar findings in A. mellifera in a species that is not troubled by many of the experimental difficulties inherent in A. mellifera.

Key words

Honey bee Subfamily RFLP Task specialization Dwarf honey bee Thailand Multiple mating 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Benjamin P. Oldroyd
    • 1
  • H. Allen Sylvester
    • 1
  • Siriwat Wongsiri
    • 2
  • Thomas E. Rinderer
    • 1
  1. 1.Honey-Bee BreedingGenetics and Physiology Research Laboratory, USDA-ARSBaton RougeUSA
  2. 2.Bee Biology Research Unit, Faculty of ScienceChulalongkorn UniversityBangkokThailand

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