Basari, N.; Ramli, S.N.; Mohd Khairi, N.'.S. Food Reward and Distance Influence the Foraging Pattern of Stingless Bee, Heterotrigona itama. Insects2018, 9, 138.
Basari, N.; Ramli, S.N.; Mohd Khairi, N.'.S. Food Reward and Distance Influence the Foraging Pattern of Stingless Bee, Heterotrigona itama. Insects 2018, 9, 138.
Stingless bee beekeeping provides new opportunities to improve the incomes of many households in Malaysia through the sale of honey and other bee products. While Heterotrigona itama is one of the most commonly cultured species of stingless bees, its behavior is not very well understood. Hence, we conducted this study to investigate the behavior of H. itama in exploiting food sources by ascertaining the nectar sugar concentration preferred by the bee. We also aimed to determine the preferred distance of food source from the bee hive. Our results suggest that H. itama prefers high sugar concentrations of 35% and above, and they would fly up to 7 m from the hive to collect food. We discuss how nectar concentration and food distance influence the number of bees exploiting food sources and the overall foraging pattern of H. itama.
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