Actual reproductive conflict during emergency queen rearing in Apis florea
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Unequal relatedness among workers in polyandrous honey bee colonies provides the potential for reproductive conflict during emergency queen rearing. Adult workers can increase their inclusive fitness by selectively rearing their full-sisters as queens. We investigated the paternity of emergency queens in two colonies of Apis florea using five microsatellite loci. In colony 1 there was no significant difference between the proportions of queens and workers in each patriline (P = 0.48). In contrast, the relative frequency of patrilines in colony 2 differed significantly between queens and workers (P = 0.03). More than a quarter of the queens reared in this colony were of a single patriline, suggesting that larvae were selected for rearing as queens non-randomly.
KeywordsApis florea nepotism emergency queen rearing DNA microsatellites
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