Conservation Evidence strives to be as useful to conservationists as possible. Please take our survey to help the team improve our resource.

Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Artificial hibernation of buff-tailed bumblebee queens Bombus terrestris for 45 days produces highest egg-laying and colony formation rates in laboratory experiments at the University of Akdeniz, Antalya, Turkey

Published source details

Gosterit A. & Gurel F. (2009) Effect of different diapause regimes on survival and colony development in the bumble bee Bombus terrestris. Journal of Apicultural Research and Bee World, 48, 279-283

This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Rear declining bumblebees in captivity Bee Conservation

Gurel & Gosterit (2009) reared 50 wild-caught B. terrestris dalmatinus over two generations in the laboratory. Queens were anaesthetized with CO2, then confined with B. terrestris workers to induce colony formation. They found second-generation queens produced around 60% more workers (average 121 workers/colony, compared to 72 workers/colony in the first generation), significantly more males (average 71 males/colony, compared to 30 for first-generation colonies) and completed the colony cycle significantly more quickly than first-generation colonies.

Rear declining bumblebees in captivity Bee Conservation

In another replicated controlled laboratory experiment, Gosterit & Gurel (2009) found that hibernating B. terrestris queens at 4-5°C for 45 days followed by anaesthetizing with CO2 for 30 minutes produced the highest egg-laying and colony formation rates, compared to non-hibernated queens, or those hibernated for 75 or 105 days. However, non-hibernated queens (also anaesthetized) ultimately produced larger colonies, with more workers and more new queens and males. These experiments used 148 mated, laboratory reared queens, with 30-40 queens in each treatment group.