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Dancing attraction: followers of honey bee tremble and waggle dances exhibit similar behaviors

Tim Landgraf, Calvin Lam, Yanlei Li, James Nieh— 2017

The function of the honey bee tremble dance and how it attracts signal receivers is poorly understood. We tested the hypothesis that tremble followers and waggle followers exhibit the same dance following behavior. If correct, this would unify our understanding of dance following, provide insight into dance information transfer, and offer a way to identify the signal receivers of tremble dance information. Followers showed similar initial attraction to and tracking of dancers. However, waggle dancers were faster than tremble dancers, and follower forward, sideways, and angular velocities were generally similar to the velocities of their respective dancers. Waggle dancers attracted followers from 1.3-fold greater distances away than tremble dancers. Both follower types were attracted to the lateral sides of dancers, but tremble followers were more attracted to the dancer's head, and waggle followers were more attracted to the dancer's abdomen. Tremble dancers engaged in 4-fold more brief food exchanges with their followers than waggle dancers. The behaviors of both follower types are therefore relatively conserved. Researchers can now take the next steps, observing tremble followers to determine their subsequent behaviors and testing the broader question of whether follower attraction and tracking is conserved in a wide range of social insects.

TitelDancing attraction: followers of honey bee tremble and waggle dances exhibit similar behaviors
VerfasserTim Landgraf, Calvin Lam, Yanlei Li, James Nieh
VerlagThe Company of Biologists Ltd.
ThemaApis mellifera, foraging communication, signaling, colony organization, division of labor
Datum201705
KennungDOI: 10.1242/bio.025445
Quelle/n
Spracheeng
Größe oder Länge24 pages
RechteThis is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License