An efficient method for decoding the honey bee waggle dance and its use in determining the effects of hive relocation on foraging efficiency

Riddell Pearce, Fiona (2013) An efficient method for decoding the honey bee waggle dance and its use in determining the effects of hive relocation on foraging efficiency. Masters thesis (MPhil), University of Sussex.

[img]
Preview
PDF - Published Version
Download (1MB) | Preview

Abstract

Our understanding and uses of the honey bee waggle dance have come a long way since its discovery by Karl von Frisch in the 1940s. It is now used as a powerful research tool for investigating various features of honey bee biology. Manual dance decoding is time-consuming. It is impractical to decode all circuits of a dance to determine foraging location; however, intra-dance waggle runs vary, so it is important to decode enough to obtain a good average. In chapter 2 I examine the variation among waggle runs made by foraging bees to devise a method of dance decoding. The first and last waggle runs within a dance are significantly more variable than any waggle run in between. We recommend that any four consecutive waggle runs, not including the first and last runs, may be decoded.
This thesis also examines how artificially moving hives affects the foraging efficiency of colonies that are moved and whether it has any effect on resident colonies (Chapter 3). We moved three colonies (in observation hives) onto the University of Sussex campus from a site more than 20km away and compared their foraging efficiency to three similarly sized resident colonies. Foraging distance, forager effort, nectar concentration, percentage of successful nectar foragers were the factors used to quantify foraging efficiency. We found that bringing new hives onto the apiary site had no effect on the foraging efficiency of the resident colonies that moved colonies were able to match the foraging efficiency of resident colonies immediately after the move.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Schools and Departments: School of Life Sciences > Biology and Environmental Science
Subjects: Q Science > QL Zoology > QL0360 Invertebrates > QL0434 Arthropoda > QL0463 Insects > QL0563 Hymenoptera > QL0568.A-Z Systematic divisions. By family, A-Z > QL0568.A6 Apidae (Honeybees, etc.)
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 28 Jun 2013 11:38
Last Modified: 10 Sep 2015 14:30
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/45177

View download statistics for this item

📧 Request an update