Convergence of carbohydrate-biased intake targets in caged worker honeybees fed different protein sources

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dc.contributor.author Altaye, Solomon Z.
dc.contributor.author Pirk, Christian Walter Werner
dc.contributor.author Crewe, Robin M.
dc.contributor.author Nicolson, Sue W.
dc.date.accessioned 2011-05-23T06:22:34Z
dc.date.available 2011-05-23T06:22:34Z
dc.date.issued 2010-06
dc.description.abstract The nutritional needs of bees are supplied by nectar carbohydrates and by protein and other nutrients in pollen but little is known of how bees achieve nutritional balance. Using newly emerged caged worker honeybees (Apis mellifera scutellata), we investigated whether bees maintain their intake target when confined to pairs of imbalanced complementary diets varying in protein to carbohydrate (P:C) ratio. Diets were formulated using three protein sources [casein, royal jelly or Feed-Bee® (a natural pollen substitute)] and sucrose. Within each protein type, honeybees switched between complementary diets and converged on the same P:C intake target. However, this target differed between protein types: P:C ratios were 1:12, 1:14 and 1:11 on casein, royal jelly and Feed-Bee® diets, respectively. Except for an early peak in protein consumption on royal jelly diets, these strongly convergent ratios remained constant over the 14day experiment. This is probably due to the absence of brood, reflected in relatively stable values measured for haemolymph protein concentration and hypopharyngeal gland activation in bees on Feed- Bee® diets. Performance of caged workers was also assessed in terms of survival and ovarian activation. Survival was highest on casein diets and lowest on Feed-Bee® diets but ovarian activation was highest on royal jelly diets and lowest on casein diets. This may be due to additional components in Feed-Bee® and royal jelly (e.g. fatty acids), which are needed to activate the ovaries but also reduce survival. Nutrient intake of broodless workers is directly related to their own physiological requirements, and the strong carbohydrate bias may reflect the high metabolic rate of honeybees even under resting conditions. en
dc.identifier.citation Altaye, SZ, Pirk, CWW, Crewe, RM & Nicolson, SW 2010, 'Convergence of carbohydrate-biased intake targets in caged worker honeybees fed different protein sources', The Journal of Experimental Biology, vol. 213, pp. 3311-3318. [http://jeb.biologists.org/] en
dc.identifier.issn 0022-0949
dc.identifier.other 1477-9145 (online)
dc.identifier.other 10.1242/jeb.046953
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2263/16601
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher Company of Biologists en
dc.rights © 2010. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd. en
dc.subject Nutrition en
dc.subject Geometric framework en
dc.subject Apis mellifera scutellata en
dc.subject Ovarian activation en
dc.subject.lcsh Honeybee -- Nutrition en
dc.title Convergence of carbohydrate-biased intake targets in caged worker honeybees fed different protein sources en
dc.type Article en


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