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Linking Measures of Colony and Individual Honey Bee Health to Survival among Apiaries Exposed to Varying Agricultural Land Use

We previously characterized and quantified the influence of land use on survival and productivity of colonies positioned in six apiaries and found that colonies in apiaries surrounded by more land in uncultivated forage experienced greater annual survival, and generally more honey production. Here, detailed metrics of honey bee health were assessed over three years in colonies...

Physiological and Behavioral Changes in Honey Bees (Apis mellifera) Induced by Nosema ceranae Infection

Persistent exposure to mite pests, poor nutrition, pesticides, and pathogens threaten honey bee survival. In healthy colonies, the interaction of the yolk precursor protein, vitellogenin (Vg), and endocrine factor, juvenile hormone (JH), functions as a pacemaker driving the sequence of behaviors that workers perform throughout their lives. Young bees perform nursing duties within...

Increased Resin Collection after Parasite Challenge: A Case of Self-Medication in Honey Bees?

The constant pressure posed by parasites has caused species throughout the animal kingdom to evolve suites of mechanisms to resist infection. Individual barriers and physiological defenses are considered the main barriers against parasites in invertebrate species. However, behavioral traits and other non-immunological defenses can also effectively reduce parasite transmission and...

Propolis and bee health: the natural history and significance of resin use by honey bees

Social immunity, which describes how individual behaviors of group members effectively reduce disease and parasite transmission at the colony level, is an emerging field in social insect biology. An understudied, but significant behavioral disease resistance mechanism in honey bees is their collection and use of plant resins. Honey bees harvest resins with antimicrobial...

Metabolomics Reveals the Origins of Antimicrobial Plant Resins Collected by Honey Bees

The deposition of antimicrobial plant resins in honey bee, Apis mellifera, nests has important physiological benefits. Resin foraging is difficult to approach experimentally because resin composition is highly variable among and between plant families, the environmental and plant-genotypic effects on resins are unknown, and resin foragers are relatively rare and often forage in...

Field trial of honey bee colonies bred for mechanisms of resistance against Varroa destructor

We compared colonies selectively bred for both hygienic behavior and Suppression of Mite Reproduction (HYG/SMR) with colonies bred solely for hygienic behavior (HYG) and unselected control colonies. Colonies were evaluated for strength, brood viability, removal of freeze-killed brood, honey production, mite loads on adult bees and within worker brood, and mite reproductive...

Israeli Acute Paralysis Virus: Epidemiology, Pathogenesis and Implications for Honey Bee Health

Bee Health Yan Ping Chen Jeffery S. Pettis Miguel Corona Wei Ping Chen Cong Jun Li Marla Spivak P. Kirk Visscher Gloria DeGrandi-Hoffman Humberto Boncristiani Yan Zhao Dennis vanEngelsdorp Keith