Enhancement of Honey Production of Apis mellifera L. Colonies in Egypt
Zaghloul, A . O., Nagda A. El-Sayed, Nadia M. Hassona, A. K. Mourad and B. A. Abdel-Razek
Two different methods were carried out as an attempt to increase the honey production of A. mellifera colonies (Hybrid) in Egypt. The first method was conducted during winter of 2015/2016 season, includes and three different diets; skimmed soybean, (A) chickpea, (B) and yellow corn flour(C). These supplementary diets were used to fed bee colonies during dearth period to increase their production. Results revealed an increase in sealed brood yield to 1290.0±48.47 inch2 with daily egg laying of 2956.2±111.1 eggs/colony for colonies fed on soybean diet (A), which was the best diet as compared to chickpeas (B) and yellow corn diets (C). In addition, diet (A) showed the highest number of queen cells (138.6±5.65 cell/colony) with the highest cell length (14.9±0.38 mm/queen cell). Moreover, these colonies showed the highest honey production (6.82 ± 0.33 Kg/ colony) during the period of citrus blossom season. A queen exclusion system, the second method, was conducted to increase honey production through out three nectar seasons of citrus, clover and cotton. Total honey was 91.45 kg/10 colonies with amean of 9.15 kg /colony. In clover season, honey production was 53.78 kg/10 colonies, with a mean of 5.38 kg/colony, while in cotton season the colonies produced the least amount of honey of 43.14 kg/10 colonies with a mean of 4.31 kg/colony. There were highly significant differences among the colonies that provided with the queen excluder system on one side and the other control colonies on the other side. Statistical wise, the difference was sigmi ficamt between queen exclusion system ant the control. Keywords: supplementary diets, soybean, chickpeas, yellow corn flour, queen cells, bees honey, sealed brood, egg lying, queen length, queen excluder.