Foraging behaviour of Apis mellifera on Trianthema portulacastrum
Jasvir Singh Dalio
One of the major problems in beekeeping is presence of floral dearth periods. So it is desirable to study subsistence flora during these periods. A study was conducted on foraging behaviour of Apis mellifera on Trianthema portulacastrum, which is a very common weed of summer season under Punjab conditions. Foraging activity took place during morning (0730 to 1020 hours) time only and reached a peak at 0830 to 0850 hours. Average abundance of bees on this weed was 5.89 bees/m²/min, while maximum foraging activity was noted to be 13 bees /m² / min from 0830 to 0840 hours. Mean foraging frequency was 18.22 flowers/min. Maximum number of flowers visited / min. was 25 (at 0820 to 0830 hours). Average pollen load observed was 2 mg/ bee. This weed is minor source but provide subsistence forage and serve an important purpose of sustaining bee colonies at critical time of floral scarcity.