Rearing the European orchard bee Osmia cornuta on artificial pollen-based diets leads to high larval mortality; laboratory experiments at the University of Bologna, Emilia Romagna, Italy
This study is summarised as evidence for the following.
Rear and manage populations of solitary beesAction Link
Rear and manage populations of solitary bees
A replicated controlled laboratory experiment at the University of Bologna, Italy, found that 408 European orchard bees Osmia cornuta reared on pollen-based artificial diets showed high larval mortality (76-100%; Ladurner et al. 1999). The 331 control bees allowed to consume the pollen lump provided by their mother had lower mortality rates (4-32%). These authors suggest this is because female O. cornuta bees add something, perhaps an enzyme, to the pollen they provide for their larvae.