This study was done to discover any beneficial effect of a medicinal mushroom Agaricus brasiliensis extract on the honey bee. Firstly, a laboratory experiment was conducted on 640 bees reared in 32 singleuse plastic rearing cups. A. brasiliensis extract proved safe in all doses tested (50, 100 and 150 mg/kg/ day) irrespective of feeding mode (sugar syrup or candy). Secondly, a three-year field experiment was conducted on 26 colonies treated with a single dose of A. brasiliensis extract (100 mg/kg/day) added to syrup. Each year the colonies were treated once in autumn and twice in spring. The treatments significantly increased colony strength parameters: brood rearing improvement and adult population growth were noticed more often than the increase in honey production and pollen reserves. These positive effects were mainly observed in April. In conclusion, A. brasiliensis extract is safe for the bees and helps maintaining strong colonies, especially in spring.
- Apis mellifera
- Colony strength
- Medicinal mushroom ‘Cogumelo do Sol’
- Natural-based supplement