Nom du corpus

Corpus Systématique Animale

Titre du document

The spatial precision of the honey bees' dance communication

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Springer (journals)
Langue(s) du document
Type de document
Mots-clés d'auteur
  • Apis
  • communication
  • dance language
  • foraging behavior
  • honey bee
  • information quality
  • insect communication
  • recruitment communication
  • social insects
  • waggle dance
Nom du fichier dans la ressource
  • William F. Towne 1
  • James L. Gould 1
  • 1) Department of Biology, Princeton University, 08544, Princeton, New Jersey

Many social insect species that employ directional recruitment to food finds communicate the location of their targets with seemingly needless imprecision. Here we present evidence that the spatial precision of the honey bees' dance communication has been “tuned” by selection so that recruits are neither so accurate that they usually find areas which have already been depleted nor so inaccurate that they usually fail to find the advertised resources altogether. First, the bees' distance errors are similar in magnitude to their directional errors, and their angular errors decrease greatly with increasing distance to the target (decreasing more than fourfold between 100 and 700 m). As a result, the absolute scatter of recruits remains relatively constant with changing distance to the target (increasing by less than 50% between 100 and 700 m). This is to be expected if the optimal level of imprecision is the same for distance and direction and does not change with the distance of the target from the nest. Second, comparative studies involving three tropical- and one temperate-zone species (all Apis)suggest that the precision of the bees' languages may have been tuned in accordance with the spatial characteristics of the resources each species uses. We suggest that both the round dance, which conveys no directional information for nearby targets, and the high angular divergence in waggle dances indicating targets within several hundred meters of the colony are both understandable in this context.

Catégories Science-Metrix
  • 1 - natural sciences
  • 2 - biology
  • 3 - entomology
Catégories INIST
  • 1 - sciences appliquees, technologies et medecines
  • 2 - sciences biologiques et medicales
  • 3 - sciences biologiques fondamentales et appliquees. psychologie
  • 4 - ethologie animale
Catégories Scopus
  • 1 - Life Sciences ; 2 - Agricultural and Biological Sciences ; 3 - Insect Science
  • 1 - Life Sciences ; 2 - Agricultural and Biological Sciences ; 3 - Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
Catégories WoS
  • 1 - science ; 2 - entomology
Identifiant ISTEX

Journal of Insect Behavior

Année de publication
Présence de XML structuré
Version PDF
Score qualité du texte
  • Insectes
Type de publication
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