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

Smart M, Pettis J, Rice N, Browning Z, Spivak M - PLoS ONE (2016)

Bottom Line: 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.At the individual bee level, expression of vitellogenin, defensin1, and lysozyme2 were important markers of overwinter survival.This study is a novel first step toward identifying pertinent physiological responses in honey bees that result from their positioning near varying landscape features in intensive agricultural environments.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: University of Minnesota, Department of Entomology, St. Paul, MN, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
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 positioned in the same six apiaries. The colonies were located in North Dakota during the summer months and were transported to California for almond pollination every winter. Our aim was to identify relationships among measures of colony and individual bee health that impacted and predicted overwintering survival of colonies. We tested the hypothesis that colonies in apiaries surrounded by more favorable land use conditions would experience improved health. We modeled colony and individual bee health indices at a critical time point (autumn, prior to overwintering) and related them to eventual spring survival for California almond pollination. Colony measures that predicted overwintering apiary survival included the amount of pollen collected, brood production, and Varroa destructor mite levels. At the individual bee level, expression of vitellogenin, defensin1, and lysozyme2 were important markers of overwinter survival. This study is a novel first step toward identifying pertinent physiological responses in honey bees that result from their positioning near varying landscape features in intensive agricultural environments.

Show MeSH

Related in: MedlinePlus

Status of colonies prior to mortality 2010–2013.Each apiary started out with a total of 24 colonies in North Dakota each May. Final colony losses were determined in March (almond pollination) of the following year. Status of the queen was assessed every 6 weeks in each colony.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4814072&req=5

pone.0152685.g003: Status of colonies prior to mortality 2010–2013.Each apiary started out with a total of 24 colonies in North Dakota each May. Final colony losses were determined in March (almond pollination) of the following year. Status of the queen was assessed every 6 weeks in each colony.

Mentions: New queens were introduced into each colony in the spring of each year and monitored during the life span of a colony, extending from May of one year (when colonies were in North Dakota) to March of the following year (when colonies were in almond orchards in California) from 2010–2013. Fig 3 shows the status of queens in colonies experiencing mortality in the colony assessment period six weeks prior to being reported as dead. Among all colonies (24 colonies in six sites over three years) the average annual colony mortality rate was 26%. Among the colonies that died (Fig 3), a majority (59%) had an apparent queen issue on the previous inspection (the colony was queenless, the queen was a drone layer, there was no queen but workers were laying eggs, or there was a virgin queen), while 28% dwindled over time with no signs of queen problems, and 12% perished absent an obvious diagnostic cause (no problems were evident during the previous assessment period). Only one colony death was potentially associated with an obvious disease, Ascophera apis in 2010 at site F.


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

Smart M, Pettis J, Rice N, Browning Z, Spivak M - PLoS ONE (2016)

Status of colonies prior to mortality 2010–2013.Each apiary started out with a total of 24 colonies in North Dakota each May. Final colony losses were determined in March (almond pollination) of the following year. Status of the queen was assessed every 6 weeks in each colony.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4814072&req=5

pone.0152685.g003: Status of colonies prior to mortality 2010–2013.Each apiary started out with a total of 24 colonies in North Dakota each May. Final colony losses were determined in March (almond pollination) of the following year. Status of the queen was assessed every 6 weeks in each colony.
Mentions: New queens were introduced into each colony in the spring of each year and monitored during the life span of a colony, extending from May of one year (when colonies were in North Dakota) to March of the following year (when colonies were in almond orchards in California) from 2010–2013. Fig 3 shows the status of queens in colonies experiencing mortality in the colony assessment period six weeks prior to being reported as dead. Among all colonies (24 colonies in six sites over three years) the average annual colony mortality rate was 26%. Among the colonies that died (Fig 3), a majority (59%) had an apparent queen issue on the previous inspection (the colony was queenless, the queen was a drone layer, there was no queen but workers were laying eggs, or there was a virgin queen), while 28% dwindled over time with no signs of queen problems, and 12% perished absent an obvious diagnostic cause (no problems were evident during the previous assessment period). Only one colony death was potentially associated with an obvious disease, Ascophera apis in 2010 at site F.

Bottom Line: 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.At the individual bee level, expression of vitellogenin, defensin1, and lysozyme2 were important markers of overwinter survival.This study is a novel first step toward identifying pertinent physiological responses in honey bees that result from their positioning near varying landscape features in intensive agricultural environments.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: University of Minnesota, Department of Entomology, St. Paul, MN, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
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 positioned in the same six apiaries. The colonies were located in North Dakota during the summer months and were transported to California for almond pollination every winter. Our aim was to identify relationships among measures of colony and individual bee health that impacted and predicted overwintering survival of colonies. We tested the hypothesis that colonies in apiaries surrounded by more favorable land use conditions would experience improved health. We modeled colony and individual bee health indices at a critical time point (autumn, prior to overwintering) and related them to eventual spring survival for California almond pollination. Colony measures that predicted overwintering apiary survival included the amount of pollen collected, brood production, and Varroa destructor mite levels. At the individual bee level, expression of vitellogenin, defensin1, and lysozyme2 were important markers of overwinter survival. This study is a novel first step toward identifying pertinent physiological responses in honey bees that result from their positioning near varying landscape features in intensive agricultural environments.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus