Mating and How Reproductive Isolation Is Achieved

Honey bees mate in flight; the process has been studied in detail in A. mellifera, and involves three stages. A queen flies out when only a few days old, and drones that are flying in the area, attracted by the pheromones she produces, follow her. If a drone succeeds in clasping the queen with his legs,

FIGURE 1 Worker honey bees (Apis mellifera) on honeycomb. (Photograph courtesy of P. Kirk Visscher.)

his endophallus is everted and mating occurs. When they separate, part of his genitalia remains in the queen, and he falls away and dies. She may mate more than once (usually on the same flight), and the semen she receives is stored in her spermatheca for use throughout her egg-laying life.

The main component of the pheromone attracting drones to the queen seems to be the same for all Apis species (9-oxo-trans-decenoic acid). In an area with more than one species, reproductive isolation can be achieved if the drones of different species fly at different times of day.

Bee Keeping

Bee Keeping

Make money with honey How to be a Beekeeper. Beekeeping can be a fascinating hobby or you can turn it into a lucrative business. The choice is yours. You need to know some basics to help you get started. The equipment needed to be a beekeeper. Where can you find the equipment you need? The best location for the hives. You can't just put bees in any spot. What needs to be considered when picking the location for your bees?

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