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Carl Anderson Francis L.W. Ratnieks Worker allocation in insect societies: coordination of nectar foragers
 

Summary: REVIEW
Carl Anderson á Francis L.W. Ratnieks
Worker allocation in insect societies: coordination of nectar foragers
and nectar receivers in honey bee (Apis mellifera) colonies
Received: 15 December 1998 / Received in revised form: 6 March 1999 / Accepted: 12 March 1999
Abstract Nectar collection in the honey-bee is parti-
tioned. Foragers collect nectar and take it to the nest,
where they transfer it to receiver bees who then store it
in cells. Because nectar is a Żuctuating and unpredictable
resource, changes in worker allocation are required to
balance the work capacities of foragers and receivers so
that the resource is exploited eciently. Honey bee
colonies use a complex system of signals and other
feedback mechanisms to coordinate the relative and
total work capacities of the two groups of workers in-
volved. We present a functional evaluation of each of
the component mechanisms used by honey bees ± waggle
dance, tremble dance, stop signal, shaking signal and
abandonment ± and analyse how their interplay leads to
group-level regulation. We contrast the actual regula-

  

Source: Anderson, Carl - Synthetic Intelligence, Qbit, LLC, Bethesda, MD
Ratnieks, Francis - Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield

 

Collections: Engineering; Environmental Sciences and Ecology; Mathematics