Stingless bees (Meliponini) are the largest and most diverse group of social bees, yet their largely tropical distribution means that they are less studied than their relatives, the bumble bees and honey bees. Stingless bees produce honey and collect pollen from tens of thousands of tropical plant species and, in the process, provide critical pollination services in the tropics. Like many other insects, they are struggling with new human-made challenges like habitat destruction, climate change and new diseases.
Stingless Bees provides an overview of stingless bee biology, with chapters on the evolutionary history, nesting biology, colony organisation and division of labour of stingless bees. In addition, it explores their defence strategies, foraging ecology, and varied communication methods. Accordingly, the book offers an accessible introduction and reference guide for students, researchers and laypeople interested in the biology of bees.
Dr Christoph Grüter is a Senior Lecturer at the School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, UK. He completed his PhD at the University of Bern, Switzerland, and the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina, before taking on postdoctoral positions at the University of Sussex, UK, and the University of São Paulo, Brazil. Before moving to Bristol in 2020, he held a group leader position at the University of Mainz, Germany. His work investigates the behaviour, ecology and evolution of social insects, with a focus on social bees and ants.