BROOD REARING ASSOCIATED WITH A RANGE OF WORKER-LARVA RATIOS IN THE HONEYBEE
FRANK A. EISCHEN, WALTER C. ROTHENBUHLER AND JOVAN M. KULlNCEVIC
Small colonies of honeybees (Apis melll!era), each consisting of a caged queen to which bees had access and young workers ranging in number from 200 to 2800, were given 400 eggs to rear. Workers in small colonies ate more pollen and reared more brood per individual than did workers in large colonies. A positive correlation was found between pollen consumption by workers and number of progeny reared per worker. Progeny exhibited varying life-spans that were negatively correlated with pollen consumption and rearing efficiency of workers. Dry weight of progeny was also negatively correlated with these brood-rearing parameters. The results suggest that as workers rear increasing numbers of progeny, there is an associated decrease in progeny life-span and dry weight.