Bumblebees are important pollinators in greenhouse crops. Methods to produce bumblebees have been developed by Bijen@wur. The commercial production of bumblebees is currently done by specialised companies. Bijen@wur has now been commissioned by these companies to improve the production of bumblebees and to conduct fundamental research into bumblebee diseases.
World-wide, the Netherlands is the biggest exporter of cultured bumblebee colonies. Bumblebee production requires disease-free conditions. Bijen@wur has substantial expertise in the field of bumblebee diseases and contributes to the scientific knowledge on this topic. For example, in 2006 an international study was completed on Nosema bombi, one of the most important bumblebee diseases.
Workshops on this topic are organised as requested by specialised bumblebee companies and research institutes.
- Steen, J.J.M. van der 2008 Infection and transmission of Nosema bombi in Bombus terrestris colonies and its effect on hibernation, mating and colony founding Apidologie 39 (2): 273 - 282