Stingless Bee Research
Globally, over 20,000 bees have been described with more species being discovered every year. Over 600 of these are highly eusocial species belonging to the tribe Meliponini, the stingless bees.
Like European honey bees, the stingless bees live in colonies, have queens and workers, and make and store honey. In Australia there are 11 stingless bee species, from two genera, Tetragonula and Austroplebeia.
Our Lab contributes to a variety of projects focused on stingless bee behaviour, biology and evolution. We work collaboratively with Dr Tobias Smith on these projects.
Being situated in Brisbane, we have easy access to a number of stingless bee species. In particular we focus primarily on two species, Tetragonula carbonaira and Tetragonula hockingsi, both of which are managed in hives as part of a growing stingless bee keeping industry.
More information about Dr Tobias Smith and his various projects can be found here.