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Mating influence in the ovary differentiation in adult queens of Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera, Apidae)


Journal: Brazilian Journal of Biology
ISSN 1519-6984

Volume: 62;
Issue: 4a;
Start page: 641;
Date: 2002;
Original page

Keywords: mating | germarium | vitellarium | oocyte

The present results show that in the ovarioles of a newly emerged (0 day) queen of A. mellifera only two regions may be distinguished: a proximal, short germarium and a very long distal, terminal filament. As the queen matures and gets ready for the nupcial flight, the germarium increases in lenght, advancing towered the distal end, as the terminal filament shortens. The ovarioles of queens ready to mate (6 to 8 days old) have, already one or two ovarian follicles, i.e. a very short proximal vitellarium, but a real vitellogenesis only starts after the fecundation. If the queen does not mate the ovarioles structure is disrupted (12-16 days old). In mated queen eggs the ovarioles present three differentiated regions, from the apice to the basis: a short terminal filament, a medium size germarium, and a very long basal vitellarium. As the eggs are laid, the emptied follicle collapses, degenerates and produces a corpus luteum.
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