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Two odometers in honeybees?

Dacke, Marie LU and Srinivasan, M. V. (2008) In Journal of Experimental Biology 211(20). p.3281-3286
Abstract
Although several studies have examined how honeybees gauge and report the distance and direction of a food source to their nestmates, relatively little is known about how this information is combined to obtain a representation of the position of the food source. In this study we manipulate the amount of celestial compass information available to the bee during flight, and analyse the encoding of spatial information in the waggle dance as well as in the navigation of the foraging bee. We find that the waggle dance encodes information about the total distance flown to the food source, even when celestial compass cues are available only for a part of the journey. This stands in contrast to how a bee gauges distance flown when it navigates... (More)
Although several studies have examined how honeybees gauge and report the distance and direction of a food source to their nestmates, relatively little is known about how this information is combined to obtain a representation of the position of the food source. In this study we manipulate the amount of celestial compass information available to the bee during flight, and analyse the encoding of spatial information in the waggle dance as well as in the navigation of the foraging bee. We find that the waggle dance encodes information about the total distance flown to the food source, even when celestial compass cues are available only for a part of the journey. This stands in contrast to how a bee gauges distance flown when it navigates back to a food source that it already knows. When bees were trained to find a feeder placed at a fixed distance in a tunnel in which celestial cues were partially occluded and then tested in a tunnel that was fully open to the sky, they searched for the feeder at a distance that corresponds closely to the distance that was flown under the open sky during the training. Thus, when navigating back to a food source, information about distance travelled is disregarded when there is no concurrent input from the celestial compass. We suggest that bees may possess two different odometers - a 'community' odometer that is used to provide information to nestmates via the dance, and a 'personal' odometer that is used by an experienced individual to return to a previously visited source. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Apis mellifera, honeybee, path integration, odometer, celestial compass
in
Journal of Experimental Biology
volume
211
issue
20
pages
3281 - 3286
publisher
The Company of Biologists Ltd
external identifiers
  • wos:000259866400012
  • scopus:55549091748
ISSN
1477-9145
DOI
10.1242/jeb.021022
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
b8c9d76c-54c0-4a43-ac40-1f9f856127d1 (old id 1285730)
date added to LUP
2009-02-06 09:11:17
date last changed
2017-01-01 05:16:08
@article{b8c9d76c-54c0-4a43-ac40-1f9f856127d1,
  abstract     = {Although several studies have examined how honeybees gauge and report the distance and direction of a food source to their nestmates, relatively little is known about how this information is combined to obtain a representation of the position of the food source. In this study we manipulate the amount of celestial compass information available to the bee during flight, and analyse the encoding of spatial information in the waggle dance as well as in the navigation of the foraging bee. We find that the waggle dance encodes information about the total distance flown to the food source, even when celestial compass cues are available only for a part of the journey. This stands in contrast to how a bee gauges distance flown when it navigates back to a food source that it already knows. When bees were trained to find a feeder placed at a fixed distance in a tunnel in which celestial cues were partially occluded and then tested in a tunnel that was fully open to the sky, they searched for the feeder at a distance that corresponds closely to the distance that was flown under the open sky during the training. Thus, when navigating back to a food source, information about distance travelled is disregarded when there is no concurrent input from the celestial compass. We suggest that bees may possess two different odometers - a 'community' odometer that is used to provide information to nestmates via the dance, and a 'personal' odometer that is used by an experienced individual to return to a previously visited source.},
  author       = {Dacke, Marie and Srinivasan, M. V.},
  issn         = {1477-9145},
  keyword      = {Apis mellifera,honeybee,path integration,odometer,celestial compass},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {20},
  pages        = {3281--3286},
  publisher    = {The Company of Biologists Ltd},
  series       = {Journal of Experimental Biology},
  title        = {Two odometers in honeybees?},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1242/jeb.021022},
  volume       = {211},
  year         = {2008},
}