e-ISSN 2231-8542
ISSN 1511-3701

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Species Diversity and External Nest Characteristics of Stingless Bees in Meliponiculture

Kelly, N., Farisya, M. S. N., Kumara, T. K. and Marcela, P.

Pertanika Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science, Volume 37, Issue 3, August 2014

Keywords: Entrance, Trigona, honey, meliponiculture, nest, stingless bee

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Stingless bee farming is a new and potential booming industry in Malaysia. A study was conducted on stingless bee species preferred by meliponiculturists in Malaysia. External nest characteristics of the stingless bee species were also described. Sampling of 161 stingless bee colonies at a bee farm in Kelantan, Malaysia (06°07’N, 102°19’E) revealed five species of stingless bees and one unidentified species. The species included Trigona itama, Trigona thoracica, Trigona terminata, Trigona laeviceps, and Hypotrigona scintillans and one unidentified meliponid that accounted for 83.2%, 11.2%, 2.5%, 1.9%, 0.6% and 0.6%, respectively. The external nest characteristics, including the height of tree trunk, the trunk circumference at the top and bottom, and the height of the entrance tube from the bottom, were measured together with the size and description of entrance tube for each species. It was apparent that of 17-32 known species of stingless bees in Malaysia, only T. itama and T. Thoracica were mostly used in meliponiculture.

ISSN 1511-3701

e-ISSN 2231-8542

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