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Nasonov gland

honey bee, Nasonov gland

Nasonov gland (marked red) of honey bee worker. After Jacobs (1925, fig. 12a, 21b) Das Duftorgan von Apis mellifica und ähnliche Hautdrüsenorgane sozialer und solitärer Apiden,
Zeitschrift für Morphologie und Ökologie der Tiere
, Volume 3, p.1-80, (1924)
[1], Snodgras (1956, fig. 57c) Anatomy of the honey bee,
, Ithaca, p.334, (1956)
In the upper image the gland is exposed; in the lower image the gland is hidden between tergites.

The Nasonov gland is exposed by: workers forming swarm cluster Pheromone concert in swarming honey bees,
Ann. Entomol. Soc. Amer.
, Volume 64, p.1414-17, (1971)
[3], young workers returning from orientation flight De Luchtverversching van een Bijenkast gedurende den zomer,
Maandschrift voor de Bijenteelt
, Volume 44, p.1-16, (1941)
[4], foragers at a food source Reward rate and forager activation in honeybees: recruiting mechanisms and temporal distribution of arrivals,
Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology
, Volume 54, p.80-87, (2003)
[5], returning foragers when they have problem with finding the nest entrance The adaptability of the homecoming honeybee,
The British Journal of Animal Behaviour
, Volume 1, Number 2, p.59–66, (1953)
[6], disorientated workers outside the nest A scent organ in the bee,
British Bee Journal
, Volume 29, p.151-153, (1901)
[7], workers waiting at the nest entrance for queen returning from mating flight The mating of the honeybee,
Bee World
, Volume 3, p.2-15, 23-24, (1956)
[8], worker at the nest entrance of queenless colonies Pheromones of social bees,
, London, p.218, (1987)
[9], near larvae chosen for emergency queen rearing The Nasonov Gland Pheromone is Involved in Recruiting Honeybee Workers for Individual Larvae to be Reared as Queens,
Journal of Insect Behavior
, Volume 25, Issue 4, Number 4, p.392-400, (2012)
[10], workers in some unnatural circumstances The behaviour of worker honeybees at the hive entrance,
, Volume 4, p.262-292, (1952)

Nasanov gland occurs only in workers, not in queens or drones.
The Nasonov gland secretion contains (accordng to The attractiveness of citral to foraging honeybees,
Progress Report - Texas Agricultural Experimental Station
, Volume 2324, p.1-7, (1964)
[12]Identification of geraniol as the active component in the Nassanoff pheromone of the honey bee,
, Volume 194, p.704-706, (1962)
[13]Identification of nerolic and geranic acids in the Nassanoff pheromone of the honey bee,
, Volume 202, p.320-321, (1964)
[14]Nasonov pheromone of the honeybee Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera: Apidae), I. Chemical characterization.,
J. Chem. Ecol.
, Volume 6, p.425-434, (1980)

  1. (Z)-citral
  2. (E)-ditral
  3. nerol
  4. geraniol
  5. nerolic acid
  6. geranic acid
  7. (E,E)-farnesol

Each of the components separately is not as effective as the mixture Attractant or pheromone: The case of Nasonov secretion and honeybee swarms,
Journal of Chemical Ecology
, Volume 25, Number 9, p.2051–2056, (1999)
Composition of the secretion changes with age of workers Production of geraniol by honey bees of various ages,
Journal of Insect Physiology
, Volume 9, Number 4, p.431–434, (1963)
[17] and differs between winter and spring Nasonov pheromone of the honeybee, Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera, Apidae), III. Regulation of pheromone composition and production,
J. Chem. Ecol.
, Volume 7, p.543-554, (1981)

Synthetic Nasonov pheromone can be used to attract swarms to swarm traps Synthetic pheromones to attract honeybee (Apis mellifera) swarms,
Journal of Agricultural Science
, Volume 97, p.427–431, (1981)
[19]Baits to improve bait hive attractiveness to honey bees,
Am. Bee J
, Volume 123, Number 3, p.193–194, (1983)
[20]Honeybee Nasonov pheromone lure,
Bee World
, Volume 65, p.175-181, (1984)
[21]Using synthetic pheromone lures to attract honeybee colonies in Kenya,
J Apic Res
, Volume 25, p.85–86, (1986)
[22]Swarm traps for survey and control of Africanized honey bees,
Bull Entomol Soc Amer
, Volume 33, Number 3, p.155–158, (1987)
[23]Attraction of reproductive honey bee swarms to artificial nests by Nasonov pheromone,
Journal of Chemical Ecology
, Volume 20, Number 5, p.1053–1056, (1994)
[24]Attractant or pheromone: The case of Nasonov secretion and honeybee swarms,
Journal of Chemical Ecology
, Volume 25, Number 9, p.2051–2056, (1999)
[16], attract bees to crops for pollination Attracting honeybees to alfalfa with citral, geraniol, and anise,
J. Apic. Res.
, Volume 9, p.9-12, (1970)
[25]The effect of citral and geraniol conditioning on the searching activity of honeybee recruits,
J. Apic. Res
, Volume 12, p.53-57, (1973)
[26]The Nasonov pheromone of the honeybee, Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera: Apidae), II. Bioassay of the components using foragers,
J. Chem. Ecol.
, Volume 7, p.225-237, (1981)

Other references: La glandola odoripara dell'Apis mellifica L,
Bollettino dell’Istituto di Entomologia dell’Universita degli Studi Bologna
, Volume 24, p.53-66, (1960)
[28]A synthetic pheromone lure to induce worker honeybees to consume water and artificial forage,
J. Apic. Res.
, Volume 22, p.224-228, (1983)
[29]Effect of honeybee Nasonov and alarm pheromone components on behaviour at the nest entrance,
J. Apic. Res.
, Volume 22, p.214–223, (1983)