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Development of Pollen Substitute Diets for Apis mellifera ligustica Colonies and their Impact on Brood Development and Honey Production

Development of Pollen Substitute Diets for Apis mellifera ligustica Colonies and their Impact on Brood Development and Honey Production

Noor Islam1*, Rashid Mahmood1, Ghulam Sarwar1, Sarfaraz Ahmad2 and Saleem Abid

1Honeybee Research Institute, National Agricultural Research Centre (NARC), Islamabad, Pakistan; 2Natural Resources Division, Pakistan Agricultural Research Council, Islamabad, Pakistan; 3Social Sciences Research Institute, National Agricultural Research Centre, Islamabad, Pakistan.

khattakni@gmail.com  

ABSTRACT

Pollen substitute diets become essential when nectar and pollen are not available to honey bees. In this study, some pollen substitute diets i. e., diet 1 (soybean flour + brewer’s yeast + powdered sugar + sugar syrup), diet 2 (soybean flour + brewer’s yeast + powdered sugar + Fenugreek and Turmeric powders + honey + orange juice + A, D and E vitamins + sugar syrup), diet 3 (maize flour + brewer’s yeast + powdered sugar + sugar syrup), diet 4 (maize flour + brewer’s yeast + honey + turmeric and fenugreek powders + A, D and E vitamins + powdered sugar + orange juice + sugar syrup) and diet 5 (Control) sugar syrup were prepared and their effects were tested for various attributes of commercial apiary of honey bee, Apis mellifera in Kohat from June to October 2018. Data were recorded for consumption rates, sealed worker brood area, strength of honey bee colonies and honey yield. Data analysis showed significant difference among all diets tested and check (i. e. control colonies). Diet 2 induced the highest consumption rate (71.90 g per colony), maximum sealed worker brood area (1562.0 cm2 per colony), mean highest maximum (12 frames covered with bees per colony), and higher (9.2 kg Zizyphus spp. honey per colony) as compared with control (D 5) and other tested diets. Honey bee colonies fed over Diet 2 gave a maximum economic return followed by Diet 4, Diet 1 and Diet 3, respectively. It is thus recommended that Diet 2 should be feed to A. mellifera colonies for commercial production of honey. 

 

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Pakistan Journal of Agricultural Research

June

Vol. 33, Iss. 2, Pages 192-421

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