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Dorso-ventral Defense Body Twisting (DBT) of A. laboriosa worker bees (AVI 2.30 MB)
Woyke, Jerzy; Wilde, Jerzy; Wilde, Maria; Sivaram, Venkataramegowda; Cervancia, Cleofas; Nagaraja, Narajanappa; Reddy, MuniswamyreddyJournal: Journal of Insect Behavior
Issue 6DOI: 10.1007/s10905-008-9144-1Published: 2008-10-04Institution(s):
Agricultural University, WM University, Dabur Apicultural Centre, Bangalore University, University of the Philippines
Defense behavior of three, free living giant (Megapis) honey bee subspecies, Apis laboriosa, A. dorsata dorsata and A. dorsata breviligula, was compared. Disturbed worker bees responded with characteristic dorso-ventral defense body twisting (DBT). Workers of A. laboriosa twisted the thorax by 55°, and the two other A. dorsata subspecies by about 10° more. A. laboriosa workers raised the tip of the abdomen by 90° and workers of the two other bee subspecies by about 20° higher. Differences in those traits were highly significant between A. laboriosa and both A. dorsata subspecies, but were not significant between those two subspecies. The whole cycle of DBT was the most vigorous in A. d. breviligula (0.11 s), and it was twice as vigorous as in A. d. dorsata (0.26 s) and trice as in A. laboriosa (0.32 s). A. laboriosa twisted the body together with wings folded over the abdomen, while the two A. dorsata subspecies raised the abdomen between spread wings. This supports the opinion to treat A. laboriosa as a separate species.
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