Acta veterinaria 2002 Volume 52, Issue 2-3, Pages: 169-179
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Investigations of hygienic behaviour and disease resistance in organic beekeeping of two honeybee ecogeographic varieties from Serbia

Stanimirović Zoran Ž., Pejović Dejan, Stevanović Jevrosima B., Vučinić Marijana M., Mirilović Milorad

Hygienic behaviour of the carniolan honeybee (Apis mellifera carnica Pollm) was investigated in 20 localities in Serbia (10 localities from the Machva region and 10 localities from the Rudnik region). The results revealed that the grey bees from Rudnik have a more expressed form of hygienic behavior compared to the yellow bees from Machva. The obtained data indicate that colonies of both investigated honeybee varieties, yellow bees from Machva and grey bees from Rudnik, belong to a category of the so called "hygienic colonies", as the efficiency of elimination of damaged pupae amounted to 91,45% in Machva honeybees and 93,60% in Rudnik honeybees. Our results point to an indisputable relationship between hygienic behaviour and the strength of honeybee colonies, i.e. the potent colonies have more expressed hygienic behaviour. Both investigated honeybee varieties can be used for improving breeds selection and for organic beekeeping in Serbia, owing to the manifested hygienic behaviour and thence, resistance to some diseases (Varroa, American foulbrood, and especially Chalkbrood).

Keywords: disease resistance, honeybee, hygienic behaviour, organic beekeeping, Serbia.

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