Kamila Dmochowska, Karol Giejdasz, Monika Fliszkiewicz, Krystyna Żółtowska
Journal of Insect Science 13 (77), 1-12, (1 August 2013) https://doi.org/10.1673/031.013.7701
KEYWORDS: diapause, enzymes, insect metabolism, Solitary bees
Bees of the genus Osmia are being used in crop pollination at an increasing rate. However, a short life expectancy of adult individuals limits the feasibility of their use. Cocoons of the red mason bee, Osmia rufa L. (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae), can be stored at 4° C in a postdiapause state, and adult bees can be used for pollination outside their natural flight period. The period of storage in this form has an unfavorable influence on the survival rate, life expectancy, and fertility of the bee. It was suggested that the negative results are connected with exhaustion of energy reserves. To test this hypothesis, the present study examined the contents of protein, carbohydrates, lipids, and the activities of some enzymes, and their degradation in red mason bees that emerged in spring according to their biological clock and in summer after elongated diapause. It was found that postdiapause artificially elongated by 3 months caused significant decreases in body weight, total sugar, glycogen, lipids, and protein content in O. rufa. Glucose level was highest in bees that emerged in the summer, which was coincident with increased activities of maltase and trehalase. The activities of sucrase and cellobiase were not changed, while amylase activity was considerably decreased. The activities of triacylglycerols lipase and C2, C4, C10 carboxylesterases were highest in bees that emerged in July. Low temperatures restrict O. rufa emergence, and during prolonged postdiapause, metabolic processes lead to significant reductions of structural and energetic compounds.