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Julian Petrasch:

A flying platform for behavioral and electrophysiological studies in honeybee navigation


The primary purpose of this thesis is to develop a flying platform for extracellular recordings of the honeybee brain. The bee is attached to a quadcopter which carries the necessary equipment for stabilizing the bee and for measuring its neural activity. This requires an analog circuit for amplifying the bee's neural signals, an ADC for digitizing the signals and a system  for storing and synchronizing extracellular recordings while the quadcopter simulates the bee's flight. Furthermore, software for preprocessing the neural and copter-data, for testing the system and for analyzing the data had to be developed. I present the first recordings of neural activity ever made in a living honeybee on a flying copter. A significant correlation of the copter's (yaw) rotation and the neural activity in honeybee's alpha-lobe could be found in the first experiments. The developed system will be used for experiments to study the long-range navigation capabilities of flying honeybees.

Tim Landgraf, Randolf Menzel
Master of Science (M.Sc.)