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Author Topic: More research on the AHB  (Read 827 times)

Offline Understudy

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More research on the AHB
« on: April 15, 2007, 01:13:13 PM »
Capitol press has a tendancy to want paid subscriptions. However you can get around that with Google and linking through them however a direct link always tends to go to the subscription page. In order to save you the hassle. Here is the complete article.

Bee researchers: Meanness genetic?
Study centers on whether Africanized bees learn behavior

By Kim Kaplan
Agricultural Research Service

Is the highly defensive behavior of Africanized honeybees simply genetic, or it is due to their social environment?

That's a question Agricultural Research Service entomologist Gloria DeGrandi-Hoffman is trying to answer. She is the research leader of the ARS Carl Hayden Bee Research Center in Tucson, Ariz.

Africanized honeybees (AHBs) more ardently defend their nests than do the European honeybees (EHB) common to the United States.

AHBs sting in greater numbers with less provocation. No honeybees are native to the New World.

European colonists brought honeybees with them, some of which became feral.

But honeybees are essential to U.S. agriculture, pollinating more than 90 crops. That pollination leads to yield and quality improvements worth more than $14 billion annually.

DeGrandi-Hoffman is marking EHB worker bees just as they emerge from their pupal stage and placing them in AHB hives, and vice versa.

Then she tracks the age at which the bees first forage and exhibit defensive behavior.

Once these behaviors are exhibited, she quick freezes the bees and sends them off to a collaborator at the University of Illinois who analyzes them for gene expression.

There are very minor genetic differences between African and European honeybees, but it is not yet known whether these differences govern the honeybee traits that people are most concerned about.

Read more about the research in the February 2007 issue of Agricultural Research magazine, available online at: http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/AR/archive/feb07/bees0207.htm.

ARS is the U.S. Department of Agriculture's chief scientific research agency.


PS. I highlighted the url for the usda link you should read that also.
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Offline Michael Bush

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Re: More research on the AHB
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2007, 09:55:21 PM »
Maybe the AHB are just misunderstood?
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