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2014-12-12 - Colloque/Abstract - Anglais - 1 page(s)

Brasero Et Martin Nicolas, Lecocq Thomas , Frérot Brigitte, Rasmont Pierre , "Comparative study of cuticular hydrocarbons in Bombus terrestris and related species (Hymenoptera, Apidae)" in Benelux Congress of Zoology, Liège, Belgique, 2014

  • Codes CREF : Entomologie (DI3163)
  • Unités de recherche UMONS : Zoologie (S869)
  • Instituts UMONS : Institut des Biosciences (Biosciences)

Abstract(s) :

(Anglais) Pollinating insects, like bees, play a major role in maintaining productive natural plant communities. Because they spend most of their adult lives collecting pollen, bees are considered as excellent pollinators. Their apparent decline is of importance for humans and biodiversity. In this context, an accurate species identification is a crucial first step to any kind of study. The morphological approach is the earliest, the easiest and the most common method used for species identification. However, identifying closely related species is often hindered by lack of diagnostic morphological characters (i.e. cryptic species and convergent evolution). The DNA-based methods is the main alternative features to traditional morphological characters (i.e. barcoding). Nevertheless, the DNA-based approaches remain expensive and are hard to apply successfully particularly on old collection specimens. In insect taxonomy, one of the most used chemical traits are chemical reproductive traits (i.e sexual pheromones). However, this chemical trait need fresh specimens and can only be extracted from a single sex. Another most used chemical traits are the long chains of cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs).They play an important role in insect communication and beside their primary roles as barrier against desiccation and microorganisms several other functions have been assigned to CHCs, including, nestmate recognition and task specificity. Here we propose a new simple and fast method that can also be used on old collection specimens. Considering these points, we aimed to determine whether cuticular hydrocarbons profile might also present a reliable option inside a model group of bees with a confused taxonomy, the bumblebees.