The energetic and survival costs of Varroa parasitism in honeybees

Aldea, Patricia; Bozinovic, Francisco


The ectoparasiteV. destructoris one of the major threats to Western honeybees' production (A. mellifera) worldwide, causing colony losses and reducing bees' productivity and pollinating capacity. Since parasitism produces high energy consumption in hosts, the aim of this study was to compare the effects of this ectoparasite on energy expenditure and survival rate in honeybees. Newborn bees were kept in chambers at 32 degrees C and 55% humidity with food ad libitum.Individual bees were taken at random and grouped into three treatments:T-0(no mites),T-1(one mite), andT(2)(two mites). After the mites had fed on the bees, the metabolic rate (CO(2)production = VCO2) was individually measured at 32 degrees C for 3 h. We also measured survival rate, using the same groups for 8 days. A significant effect of the number of mites on VCO(2)was found (T-0= 3.14 mu LCO(2)min(-1),T-1= 4.03 mu LCO(2)min(-1)andT(2)= 6.44 mu LCO(2)min(-1),F-(2)= 25.81,p< 0.001). The treatments did not affect significantly the bees' survival (p= 0.283), despite the survival rates recorded were 57.5% inT(0), 42.5% inT(1), and 40.0% inT(2).V. destructorclearly increases the energetic cost of living in bees and provoking a reduction of the survival rate even when this value was not significant statistically.

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Título según WOS: The energetic and survival costs of Varroa parasitism in honeybees
Título de la Revista: APIDOLOGIE
Volumen: 51
Número: 6
Fecha de publicación: 2020
Página de inicio: 997
Página final: 1005


Notas: ISI