Optimization of the components of an energetic diet for Africanized bees through the modelling of mixtures
Deodoro M. Brighenti, Carla R. G. Brighenti, Marcelo A. Cirillo and Carlos M. B. Santos
The Africanized bee Apis mellifera in Brazil possess a migratory tendency when there is a lack of food, so for that reason, it is common for beekeepers to supply an energetic diet to encourage fixed apiculture. This often consists of sucrose inverted using lemon juice, as beekeepers in remote rural areas cannot obtain citric acid for this purpose. In order to determine the optimum composition for these energetic diets, it is necessary to carry out both laboratory and field studies, to evaluate different proportions among the components usually used by the beekeepers for this supplementary feed. For these experiments, an appropriate statistical methodology, for instance, using the modelling of mixtures, allows a reduction in the number of treatments necessary. The present work studied the optimization of the following components: water, sugar and lemon juice, used in an energetic diet to maximize the longevity of bees kept in the laboratory. Our results showed that the optimum mixture was 47.50% water, 46.25% granulated sugar together with 6.25% lemon juice.
Africanized honey bees, Apis mellifera, diet, lemon juice, curves of level, extreme vertices design, longevity, process variable