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Apis mellifera bees perform dances to communicate the presence of desirable nectar sources. The regulation of these dances does not depend exclusively on properties of the nectar sources, but also upon certain stimuli derived from the foraging status of the colony as a whole; i.e. bees exploiting a source of constant profitability are more likely to dance when the colony's nectar intake rate is low. Based on these stimuli, individual bees tune their dances according to their colony's nectar influx without visiting alternative nectar sources. Division of labour, in addition, is a common feature in honeybees. Upon returning to the nest, successful foragers transfer the content of their crops to food-receivers by means of a common behaviour in social insects called trophallaxis, i.e. the transfer of liquid food by mouth. Martin Lindauer stated that a returned forager may sense the foraging status of its colony on the basis of the food transfer process by computing how quickly and eagerly the food-receivers unload its crop. This study focuses on the forager's experience during the food transfer process, its variability based on the colony's nectar influx, and the separate effects that the 'ease' and the 'eagerness' of the food-unloading have on the tuning of recruitment dances. Results indicate that foragers can rapidly sense variations in the colony's nectar influx, even when they experience no variation in the time interval between their return to the hive and the beginning of the food transfer. To accomplish this task they appear to use stimuli derived from the number of food-receivers, which enable them, in turn, to set their dance thresholds in relation to the nectar influx of their colony. The relevance of these findings is discussed in the context of communication and successful foraging.


Documento: Artículo
Título:How bees tune their dancing according to their colony's nectar influx: Re-examining the role of the food-receivers' 'eagerness'
Autor:De Marco, R.J.
Filiación:Facultad de Ciencias Exactas Y Naturales, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Ciudad Universitaria, Pb. II, C1428EHA, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Freie Universität Berlin, Fachbereich Biologie, Chemie, Pharmazie, Institut für Biologie-Neurobiologie, Königin-Luise-Strasse 28-30, 14195, Berlin, Germany
Palabras clave:Apis mellifera; Colony's nectar influx; Dance behaviour; Trophallaxis; animal; animal communication; article; bee; chemistry; feeding behavior; flower; food; motor activity; physiology; Animal Communication; Animals; Bees; Feeding Behavior; Flowers; Food; Motor Activity; Apis mellifera; Apoidea; Hexapoda; Insecta
Página de inicio:421
Página de fin:432
Título revista:Journal of Experimental Biology
Título revista abreviado:J. Exp. Biol.


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---------- APA ----------
(2006) . How bees tune their dancing according to their colony's nectar influx: Re-examining the role of the food-receivers' 'eagerness'. Journal of Experimental Biology, 209(3), 421-432.
---------- CHICAGO ----------
De Marco, R.J. "How bees tune their dancing according to their colony's nectar influx: Re-examining the role of the food-receivers' 'eagerness'" . Journal of Experimental Biology 209, no. 3 (2006) : 421-432.
---------- MLA ----------
De Marco, R.J. "How bees tune their dancing according to their colony's nectar influx: Re-examining the role of the food-receivers' 'eagerness'" . Journal of Experimental Biology, vol. 209, no. 3, 2006, pp. 421-432.
---------- VANCOUVER ----------
De Marco, R.J. How bees tune their dancing according to their colony's nectar influx: Re-examining the role of the food-receivers' 'eagerness'. J. Exp. Biol. 2006;209(3):421-432.