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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Bee Research Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #388153

Research Project: Managing Honey Bees Against Disease and Colony Stress

Location: Bee Research Laboratory

Title: The effect of a novel dietary supplement based on fishery industry waste hydrolysate, essential fatty acids and phytochemicals on honey bee nuclei development

item RAMOS, FACUNDO - Non ARS Employee
item SZAWARSKI, NICOLAS - Non ARS Employee
item MITTON, GIULIA - Non ARS Employee
item IGLESIAS, AZUCENA - Non ARS Employee
item LEONARDO, DE FEUDIS - Non ARS Employee
item CASTELLINI, DAMIAN - Non ARS Employee
item MARTINEZ, PABLO - Non ARS Employee
item Corona, Miguel
item EGUARAS, MARTIN - Non ARS Employee
item MAGGI, MATIAS - Non ARS Employee

Submitted to: Journal of Apicultural Research
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/2/2021
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Nutritional supplementation is required in times of food shortage, especially in areas with a predominant use of monocultures. Local availability of nutritional sources is important economical consideration for the formulation of new supplements. Recent investigations have shown that phytochemicals increase detoxification efficiency in honey bees by up-regulating the expression of members of the cytochrome p-450 family in the honey bee gut. In this study, we tested the affectivity of a new nutritional supplement composed of fish protein hydrolyzate (FPH), essential omega fatty acids (O3/6), and phytochemicals at colony-level. The results obtained show that COMP is palatable, non-toxic to Apis mellifera, and significantly increases the amount of open brood and pollen reserves of bee nuclei compared with nuclei feed with sugar syrup. Here we show the value of a nutritional supplement that combines essential nutritional components and phytochemicals to improve important parameters associated with colony fitness. We expected this nutritional supplement helps beekeepers to develop their colonies in view of the increased loss of floral resources.

Technical Abstract: Honey bees require multiple sources of nectar and pollen to obtain balanced nutrition. However, increased habitat fragmentation has reduced the availability of floral resources, making necessary the use of dietary supplementation to restore the nutritional balance of honey bee colonies. The formulation of effective supplements requires the identification and testing of candidate components, especially at the colony-level. Abscisic acid (ABA) and p-coumaric acid (CUM) are two important phytochemicals that have been reported to improve honey bee health through the activation of their immune and detoxification systems. In this study, we evaluated the affectivity of a nutritional supplement (COMP) composed by absicic acid, p- coumaric acid, fish protein hydrolyzate (FPH), and essential omega fatty acids (O3/6) in nuclei colonies. We first evaluated the toxicity of COMP against Apis mellifera compared with the control (sugar syrup) in laboratory bioassays during 96 hours. Then, we tested the effect on the amount of brood, honey, and pollen in bee hives nuclei supplemented whit COMP during thirty days. In addition, we quantified and compared the concentration of total proteins in individual honey bees collected at the beginning and at the end of the field experiment. We showed that COMP is palatable, non-toxic to Apis mellifera and significantly increases the amount of open brood and pollen reserves of bee nuclei compared with nuclei feed with sugar syrup.