Taste stimuli play vital role in the life of honey bees. Sensory structures observed on tongue of the honey bees with the help of Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) have become an important tool in analyzing honey bee biodiversity which offers an advanced diagnostic tool to study honey bee biogeography and determine adaptive variations to native flora. Tongue of honey bees present a high geographic variability in regard to the floral resources visited by the bees. The present study has determined to determine differences in the tongue of
open-nesting bees by scanning electron microscopy of Apis dorsata and Apis florea. The two bees showed distinct morphological variations with respect to the lapping and sucking apparatus. It was observed that the ridges on the proximal region exhibited rough surface on A.dorsata whereas spinous in case of A.florea. Moreover, the arrangement of hair in the middle part of the tongue also differed in the two species. The shape of flabellum differed in the two species reason being the influence of native flora. It was observed that the shape of flabellum was oval in A.dorsata whereas in A.florea it was triangular. These differences indicated for the role of native flora and honey bee biodiversity.
Apis dorsata, Apis florea, Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Tongue
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