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Bees in captivity

Discussion in 'General Zoo Discussion' started by animal_expert01, 3 Oct 2015.

  1. animal_expert01

    animal_expert01 Well-Known Member

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    Ok I've have heard of a couple of zoos with bees hives and I been wondering how do they feed a whole colony of bees? If anyone knows any answears please post them here.
     
  2. lintworm

    lintworm Moderator Staff Member

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    You do not need to feed them normally as they are honeybees which are semi-domesticated and perfectly capable of feeding themselves on the zoogrounds... Though some beekeepers also feed them a kind of sugar solution, which is placed in a hard form on top of the hive, with an opening inside the hive.
     
  3. wildzoo

    wildzoo Active Member

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    Many beekeepers feed their bees pollen substitutes in winter/spring when there are no flowers, known as pollen patties. They also feed them sugar water and water. I guess if a zoo was keeping a colony inside an enclosure they could technically feed the bees like this and keep them healthy without access to flowers.

    The pollen gives the bees much needed protein and amino acids, vitamins, carbohydrates and minerals.

    I saw all this on youtube while trying to investigate a protein supplement for ants, as I plan on keeping green tree ants in the future. My theory is that as green tree ants are the only pollinators in cape york, that they must be eating some of the pollen, and the bee pollen from health food stores could be a viable protein complement to feeding ants insects and a way of giving ants much needed vitamins etc easily. Sorry for going off topic.
     
  4. animal_expert01

    animal_expert01 Well-Known Member

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    . That's pretty interesting but Where would you get green tree ants from in Australia???
     
  5. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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  6. Eublepharis

    Eublepharis Well-Known Member

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    Bees are usually kept in the children's portions of zoos, at least according to my experiences :p

    According to ZooLex, there's a very interesting bee-themed enclosure in Tierpark Schönbrunn: ZooLex Exhibit
     
  7. wildzoo

    wildzoo Active Member

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    I am guessing you live down south as most Australians would never ask that question haha. Everyone knows the green tree ant here where I live. They are called weaver ants overseas.

    You find them all through the coastal tropical rain forest of Australia from Queensland through the Northern Territory and into WA.

    From your question I guessed you may be interested in keeping bees?

    Green tree ants can be difficult to keep in captivity from what I have heard- I think due to humidity requirements. Google and you will find lots of info on them as they are popular in Europe.

    They belong to a type of ant called Oecophylla Smaragdina also found in asia, which is red, while ours is green.

    You would find them by catching the winged Queens/Kings and establish a colony in captivity that way. I am trying to find winged ones at the moment but have read that they only produce sexuals from November- March. I am just planning on leaving an outside light on at night and attracting the winged ones that way. I have seen them before one night years ago but thought the males were winged ants and the females a weird type of wasp- little did I know they were both related. Colony dynamics of the green tree ant (Oecophylla smaragdina Fab.) in a seasonal tropical climate - [email protected]

    Anyway just putting the info out there in case you had any interest as I know bees can require a lot of care. Although green ants are quite delicate and you would probably find bees easier to keep but who knows.

    Photos and Info on Ants and Termites of Malaysia: Oecophylla Smaragdina
     
  8. wildzoo

    wildzoo Active Member

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    Proceed with caution when it comes to pollen. Pollen has been found to be the disease vector that has lead to a large number of the parasite infections that plague domestic bee colonies today.

    Do managed bees drive parasite spread and emergence in wild bees?