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N Vijayakumari Saravanan P A Chitra N Rajendran L

Abstract

Honey bees also known as "Angels of Agriculture" are arguably the most vital insects on the planet. Bee nutrition is an important aspect of colony management. Supplementary feeding is essential for maintaining the strength and health of honey bee colonies, especially during dearth periods. Experiments were conducted to evaluate a suitable, cheaper carbohydrate supplement and its effect on the colony growth of the Asiatic hive bee Apis cerana indica. Four different sugar syrup components, viz., sugar, water, milk and glucose, were combined to form  seven treatments : T1-Sugar: water (1:1), T2-Sugar: water (1:1) + Glucose (2%),T3- Sugar: water (1:1) + Desi cow’s milk (2%),T4- Sugar + water (2:1), T5- Sugar + water (2:1) + Glucose (2%) ,T6- Sugar + water (2:1) + Desi cow’s milk (2%) and T7-Control and evaluated to select honey bee colonies . Among the different sugar syrup feeding treatments, the colonies fed with T2 - Sugar: water (1:1) + Glucose (2%) had a profound effect within a month and the colonies recorded an increase in sealed brood area from 175.66 cm2 to 425.00 cm2, honey store area from 49.00 cm2 to 130.33 cm2, pollen store area from 47. 33 cm2 to 125.33 cm2, adult bee population from 4318.66 bees/colony to 4933.33 bees/colony. The work is new to A. cerana indica. Many of their bee colonies suffer from poor nutrition and absconding during the dearth period. The present study will help the beekeeping farmers maintain these Asiatic honey bee colonies during the starved period and will be useful in income generation.           

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Keywords

Apis cerana indica, Asiatic hive bee, Colony growth, Sugar feeding

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How to Cite
Vijayakumari, N., P A, S., N, C., & L, R. (2022). Effect of supplementary sugar feeding on colony growth of Asiatic hive bee, Apis cerana indica F. Journal of Applied and Natural Science, 14(SI), 220–226. https://doi.org/10.31018/jans.v14iSI.3612
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