Insectes Sociaux

, Volume 36, Issue 1, pp 15–27 | Cite as

The influence of queen mandibular pheromones on worker attraction to swarm clusters and inhibition of queen rearing in the honey bee (Apis mellifera L.)

  • M. L. Winston
  • K. N. Slessor
  • L. G. Willis
  • K. Naumann
  • H. A. Higo
  • M. H. Wyborn
  • L. A. Kaminski
Article

Summary

In this study, we examined the role of a new, five-component synthetic blend of queen bee mandibular gland pheromone in the attraction of worker bees to artificial swarm clusters, as well as the inhibition of queen rearing. This blend, which consists of three acids: 9-keto-2 (E)-decenoic acid (9ODA), andR-(−)- andS-(+)-9-hydroxy-2 (E)-decenoic acid (9HDA), and two aromatics: methylp-hydroxybenzoate (HOB) and 4-hydroxy-3-methoxyphenylethanol (HVA), has recently been shown to be significantly more active than any of its individual components, alone or in combinations of less than five components, in retinue formation around the queen (Slessoret al., 1988). In the current research, treatments included live queens, mandibular gland extracts, the three decenoic acids together, and the decenoic acids plus the aromatics HOB and HVA. While mandibular gland pheromones attracted workers during swarming and inhibited queen rearing, the queen always showed the strongest activity. However, the five-component blend was always equal to or better than the mandibular extract, suggesting that additional, non-mandibular pheromones may also be involved in these functions. The combination of the two aromatics, HOB and HVA, with the three decenoic acids, 9ODA,R-(−)-9HDA, andS-(+)-9HDA, showed stronger activity than the decenoic acids alone. The enhanced activity of the full, five-component blend exhibited a range of effects from a slight, qualitative enhancement of cluster formation to a moderate, quantitative enhancement of queen rearing inhibition, to a strong, highly significant enhancement of retinue formation.

Keywords

Apis Mellifera Mandibular Gland Strong Activity Gland Extract Queen Mandibular Pheromone 

Influence des phéromones mandibulaires de la reine sur l'attraction des ouvrières et l'inhibition de la production des reines chez l'abeille domestique (Apis mellifera L.)

Resume

Nous avons examiné l'attractivité d'un nouveau mélange synthétique fait à partir de cinq composés phéromonaux de la glande mandibulaire chez la reine d'abeille domestique sur l'attraction d'ouvrières durant l'essaimage ainsi que l'inhibition de la production des cellules royales. Le mélange est constitué de trois acides: 9-kéto-2 (E)-acide décénoiques (9ODA), etR-(−)- etS-(+)-9 hydroxy-2 (E)-acide décénoique (9HDA), et des deux aromatiques:p-hydroxyzenzoate méthyle (HOB) et 4-hydroxy-3-méthoxyphényléthanol (HVA). Il est significativement plus actif que ne le sont les composés unitaires pris séparément ou en combinaisons de moins de cinq dans la formation de la suite royale (Slessoret al., 1988). Nos expériences ont inclus les traitements suivants: reines vivantes, extraits de glande mandibulaire, combinaison des trois acides décénoiques et des acides décénoiques avec les aromatiques HOB et HVA. Tandis que les phéromones de la glande mandibulaire attiraient les ouvrières durant l'essaimage et inhibaient la production des cellules royales, la reine était toujours la plus active. Cependant, l'effet du mélange des cinq composés a toujours été comparable ou supérieur à celui de l'extrait mandibulaire, suggérant que des phéromones non-mandibulaires additionnelles peuvent aussi être impliquées dans ces fonctions. La combinaison des deux aromatiques, HOB et HVA, avec les trois acides décénoiques, 9ODA,R-(−)-9HDA, etS-(+)-9HDA, a engendré une activité plus forte que les acides décénoiques seuls. L'élévation d'activité du mélange complet de cinq composés a produit des effets allant d'une faible augmentation qualitative de la formation du groupe à une élévation quantitative modérée de l'inhibition de la production des cellules royales et jusqu'à une forte augmentation quantitative de la formation de la suite royale.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Barbier M., Lederer E., Nomura T., 1960.—Synthèse de l'acide ceto-9-decene-2-trans-oique (substance royale) et de l'acide ceto-8-nonene-2-trans-oique.Compt. Rend. Acad. Sci. (Paris,251, 1133–1135.Google Scholar
  2. Boch R., Lensky Y., 1976.—Pheromonal control of queen rearing in honeybee colonies.J. Apic. Res., 15, 59–62.Google Scholar
  3. Boch R., Shearer D.A., Young J.C., 1975.—Honey bee pheromones: field tests of natural and artificial queen substance.J. Chem. Ecol., 1, 133–148.Google Scholar
  4. Butler C.G., 1959.—Queen substance.Bee World, 40, 269–275.Google Scholar
  5. Butler C.G., 1960.—The significance of queen substance in swarming and supersedure in honey-bee (Apis mellifera L.) colonies.Proc. Roy. Entomol. Soc. London (A),35, 129–132.Google Scholar
  6. Butler C.G., 1961.—The scent of queen honey bees(Apis mellifera) that causes partial inhibition of queen rearing.J. Insect Physiol., 7, 258–264.Google Scholar
  7. Butler C.G., Callow R.K., 1968.—Pheromones of the honeybee (Apis mellifera L.): the “inhibitory scent” of the queen.Proc. Roy. Entomol. Soc. London (A),43, 62–65.Google Scholar
  8. Butler C.G., Paton P.N., 1962.—Inhibition of queen rearing by queen honey-bees (Apis mellifera L.) of different ages.Proc. Roy. Entomol. Soc. London (A),37, 114–116.Google Scholar
  9. Butler C.G., Simpson J., 1965.—Pheromones of the honeybee (Apis mellifera L.): an olfactory pheromone from the Koschewnikov gland of the queen.Scientific Studies, Univ. Libeice (Czechoslovakia),4, 33–36.Google Scholar
  10. Butler C.G., Simpson J., 1967.—Pheromones of the queen honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) which enable her workers to follow her when swarming.Proc. Roy. Entomol. Soc. London (A),42, 149–154.Google Scholar
  11. Fell R.D., Morse R.A., 1984.—Emergency queen cell production in the honey bee colony.Insectes Soc., 31, 237.Google Scholar
  12. Ferguson A.W., Free J.B., Pickett J.A., Winder M., 1979.—Techniques for studying honeybee pheromones involved in clustering, and experiments on the effect of Nasonov and queen pheromones.Physiol. Entomol., 4, 339–344.Google Scholar
  13. Gary N.E., 1974.—Pheromones thet affect the behavior and physiology of honey bees. InPheromones, ed. Martin C. Birch. London, North Holland Publishing, pp. 200–221.Google Scholar
  14. Morse R.A., 1963.—Swarm orientation in honeybees.Science, 141, 357–358.Google Scholar
  15. Morse R.A., Boch R., 1971.—Pheromone concert in swarming honey bees.Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am., 64, 1414–1417.Google Scholar
  16. Pain J. Hugel M.F., Barbier M., 1960.—Sur les constituants du mélange mandibulaires des reines d'Abeilles (Apis mellifica L.) à différents stades de leur vie.C. R. Acad. Sci., Paris,251, 1046–1048.Google Scholar
  17. Punnett E.N., Winston M.L., 1983.—Events following queen removal in colonies of European-derived honey bee races.Insectes Soc., 30, 376–383.Google Scholar
  18. Seeley T.D., 1979.—Queen substance dispersal by messenger workers in honeybee colonies.Behav. Ecol. Sociobiol., 5, 391–415.Google Scholar
  19. Silverstein R.M., Young J.C., 1976.—Insects generally use multicomponent pheromones. InPest Management with Insect Sex Attractants, M. Beroza ed., American Chemical Society, Washington, pp. 1–29.Google Scholar
  20. Slessor K.N., Kaminski L.-A., King G.G.S., Borden J.H., Winston M.L., 1988. —The semiochemical basis of the retinue response to queen honey bees.Nature 332, 354–356.Google Scholar
  21. Slessor K.N., King G.G.S., Miller D.R., Winston M.L., Cutforth T.L., 1985. —Determination of chirality of alcohol or latent alcohol semiochemicals in individual insects.J. Chem. Ecol., 11, 1659–1667.Google Scholar
  22. Velthuis H. H. W., 1970.—Queen substances from the abdomen of the honey bee queen.Z. vergl. Physiol., 70, 210–222.Google Scholar
  23. Velthuis H.H.W., 1985.—The honeybee queen and the social organization of her colony. InExperimental Behavioural Ecology and Sociobiology, B. Holldobler and M. Lindauer ed., Sinauer Associates, Sunderland, pp. 343–357.Google Scholar
  24. Velthuis H.H.W., Van Es J., 1964.—Some functional aspects of the mandibular glands of the queen honeybee.J. Apic. Res., 3, 11–16.Google Scholar
  25. Winston M.L., 1979.—Events following queen removal in colonies of Africanized honeybees in South America.Insectes Soc., 26, 373–381.Google Scholar
  26. Winston M.L., 1987.—The Biology of the Honey Bee. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Masson 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. L. Winston
    • 1
  • K. N. Slessor
    • 2
  • L. G. Willis
    • 1
  • K. Naumann
    • 1
  • H. A. Higo
    • 1
  • M. H. Wyborn
    • 1
  • L. A. Kaminski
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesSimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada
  2. 2.Department of ChemistrySimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada

Personalised recommendations