Agriculturae Conspectus Scientificus, Vol 83, No 4 (2018)

Botanical Origin and Quantity of Pollen Load on Satsuma Mandarin (Citrus unshiu Marc.) Honey Bee Forage


Pages: 345-349


Although Satsuma mandarin secretes large amounts of nectar and is considered as excellent honey bee plant species, its anthers are either sterile or produce very small amount of pollen. Therefore, honey bees collect pollen from other plant resources as well. The aim of this study was to determine the botanical origin of pollen loads collected with pollen trap during Satsuma mandarin (Citrus unshiu Marc.) honey bee forage, and to investigate relating foraging parameter (pollen collection time). The study was carried out on Carniolan honey bee (Apis mellifera carnica Pollmann, 1879) colony during April in 2014 and May 2015 in Neretva Valley, Croatia. Pollen of 12 plant species was identified in analysed samples. Results have revealed that a total pollen mass was significantly higher (p < 0.05) in the morning hours compared to the sampling carried out in the afternoon. The largest content of the pollen load in the morning originated from Crepis biennis L. and Citrus sinensis L., while the pollen grains of Cerastium glomeratum Thuill. and C. sinensis were the most dominant pollen components of investigated pollen loads in the afternoon. Although Neretva Valley has almost monocultural Satsuma mandarin orchards, a notable amount of pollen originating from other plant species and non-sterile Citrus were observed in analysed pollen loads.


Satsuma mandarin forage; Apis mellifera carnica; pollen load; botanical origin

Full Text: PDF