Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Pheromone (honey bee)
Honey bee pheromones (Greek:“carrier of excitement”) are chemical substances released by individual bees into the hive or environment, which cause changes in the physiology and behaviour of other bees. Pheromones may be volatile or non-volatile. The pheromones are chemical messengers, secreted by a queen, drone or worker bee that elicits a response by another honey bee. The chemical messages are received by the bee's antenna and other body parts. Honey bee (Apis mellifera) pheromones can be grouped into pheromones with short term and long term effects.
1.1 Alarm pheromone
Short term effect pheromones
Short term effect pheromones are also called releaser pheromones. They trigger an almost immediate behavioral response from the receiving bee.
Released by the Koschevnikov gland, near the sting shaft, consisting of more than 40 chemical compounds including isopentyl acetate (IPA), butyl acetate, 1-hexanol], 1-butanol, 1-octanol , hexyl acetate, octyl acetate, n-pentyl acetate and 2-nonanol . The chemical compounds have low molecular weights, are highly volatile and appear to be the least specific of all pheromones. Alarm pheromone is released by worker bees to alert other bees of danger or when a bee stings another animal. This pheromone attracts other bees to the location and causes the other bees to behave defensively, i.e. sting or charge. Smoke can mask the bees alarm pheromone.
Brood recognition pheromone
One rarely finds evidence of a laying worker in a colony that still has live brood. Both larvae and pupae apparently emit Brood Recognition pheromone. In a colony it inhibits the ovarian development in worker bees. The brood recognition pheromone also helps nurse bees distinguish worker larvae, drone larvae and its pupae.
Drones produce a pheromone that attracts other flying drones to promote drone aggregations at sites suitable for mating with virgin queens.
Egg marking pheromone
Helps nurse bees distinguish between eggs layed by the queen bee and eggs layed by a laying worker.
These are left by bee feet when they walk and are useful in enhancing Nasonov pheromones in searching for nectar.
Oily secretion of the queen's tarsal glands that is deposited on the comb as the queen walks across them. Secretion diminishes as the queen ages, inhibits queen cell construction (thereby inhibiting swarming)
These are used for orientation and include different terpenoids including Geraniol, Nerolic acid , Citral and Geranic acid. Bees use these to find the entrance to their colony or hive, and they release them on flowers so other bees know which flowers have nectar. Synthetic Nasonov consisted of Citral and Geraniol in a 2:1 ratio.
Queen mandibular pheromone (QMP)
The QMP, emitted by the queen, is one of the most important pheromones in the bee hive. It effects social behavior, maintenance of the hive, swarming, mating behavior, and inhibition of ovary development in worker bees. The effects are short and long term. Some of the chemicals found in QMP are carboxylic acids and aromatic compounds.
- (E)-9-oxodec-2-enoic acid (9-ODA) - inhibits queen rearing as well as ovarian development in worker bees; strong sexual attractant for drones when on a nuptial flight; critical to worker recognition of the presence of a queen in the hive
- (R,E)-(-)-9-hydroxy-2-enoic acid (9-HDA) promotes stability of a swarm, or a "calming" influence
- Methyl-p-hydroxybenzoate (HOB)
- 4-hydroxy-3-methoxy phenylethanol (HVA)
- methyl (Z)-octadec-9-enoate (methyl oleate )
- (E)-3-(4-hydroxy-3-methoxyphenyl)-prop-2-en-1-ol (coniferyl alcohol )
- (Z9,Z12,Z15)-octadeca-9,12,15-trienoic acid (linolenic acid)
Synthetic queen mandibular pheromone (QMP) is a mixture of five components 9-ODA , (-) isomer (9-HDA), (+) isomer of (9-HDA), HOB and HVA in a ratio of 118:50:22:10:1.
Queen Retinue Pheromone (QRP)
Long term effect pheromones
These pheromones, which are also called primer pheromones exert relatively slow effects that fundamentally alter developmental, physiological, and neural systems.
Ethyl oleate is released by older forager bees to slow the maturing of nurse bees. This pheromone acts as a distributed regulator to keep the ratio of nurse bees to forager bees in the balance that is most beneficial to the hive. Primer pheromones are slow acting pheromones.
- Queen mandibular pheromone in apis mellifera accessed of the web Feb, 2005
- George Imrie's Pink Pages November 1999] accessed Feb. 2005
- Moritz, R.F.A. and H. Burgin. 1987. Group response to alarm pheromones in socialwasps and the honeybees. Ethology 76, 15-26
- Maschwitz, U. 1964. Alarm substances and alarm behavior in social Hymenoptera Nature 204, 324-327.
- Boch, R. and D.A. Shearer. 1971. Chemical releasers of alarm behaviour on the honey-bee, Apis mellifera. Journal of Insect Physiology 17, 2277-2285
- Butler, C. 1609. The Feminine Monarchie. On a Treatise Concerning Bees, and the Due Ordering of them. Joseph Barnes: Oxford.
- Vander Meer, R.K. et al. 1998. Pheromone Communication in Social Insects; Boulder: Westview Press
- Wager, B.R. and M.D. Breed. 2000. Does honeybee sting alarm pheromone give orientation information to defensive bees? Annals of the Entomological Society of America 93(6), 1329-1332
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details