Weight at emergence of honey bee (Apis mellifera caucasica) queens and its effect on live weights at the pre and post mating periods.
Yasin Kahya, H Vasfi Gençer and Jerzy Woyke.
Fifty queens weighed at emergence were allocated into three groups as: light (under 190 mg); moderate (between 190-200 mg); heavy (over 200 mg), and introduced into Kirchainer mating nuclei. The queens were then weighed at ages ranging from three to 40 days and the intervals between emergence, mating and onset of oviposition were determined. The weight of ovaries, size of spermathecae, and number of spermatozoa in the spermathecae were also measured by dissecting queens one month after they started oviposition.
The weight at emergence did not affect behavioural features of reproduction such as the time from emergence to mating flight and to onset of oviposition (P > 0.05). The weight of queens at emergence was, however, highly significantly (P < 0.01) correlated with the weights three days after emergence (r = 0.572), at the onset of oviposition (r = 0.440), three days after the onset of oviposition (r = 0.562), and one month after the onset of oviposition (r = 0.808). The highest correlation was found between the weights at emergence and one month after the onset of oviposition. Highly significant correlations also occurred between the weight at emergence and the diameter (r = 0.619), and the volume of spermatheca (r = 0.607). No correlation was found between the weight at emergence and the fresh and dry weight of ovaries in queens about 40 days old (one month after the onset of oviposition). This is explained by the number and maturation stage of eggs, which depend upon the colony condition. Discriminant analysis applied to data from all characters reallocated 89.5% of the queens to their pre assigned weight groups.