Flora utilizada por Apis mellifera L. en el sur del Caldenal (Provincia Fitogeográfica del Espinal), Argentina
Flora foraged by Apis mellifera L. in. the south of Caldenal (Espinal Phytogeographic Province), Argentina. This paper reports the studies carried out on gathering of pollen and nectar by honeybee and its relation with flowering phenology, in order to know honey plants foraged by bees, in the south of Calden District (Espinal Phytogeographical Province). Flowering intensity and relative abundance were registred. 139 species -75% of which were native- were recorded, during the apicultural period 1997-1999. Flowering period was extended from the end of August to the beginning of January, with a peak in November. The bees visited a small fraction of the available flora. Most of the plants selected by Apis mellifera L. were visited for both pollen and nectar, except Erodium cicutarium (L.) L’Hér. ex Aiton that was only present in the pollen loads, and Melilotus albus Desr. and Trichocline sp. that they were only detected in the honey. Bees have used mainly native species of Asteraceae and Fabaceae families, which contributed with the greatest number of honey plants of the area. Main nectar and pollen sources, that characterize the south of Calden District, come from Brassicaceae, Condalia microphylla Cav. and Prosopis sp.
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