Thursday, August 8, 2013

The language of bees

Yesterday while out in the garden watching my bees i spotted one doing a little dance on the Landing pad. She spent a few minutes dancing around while several other bees watched.

Did you know that bees have there own language? They don't talk with words and sounds but with a dance and sent.

When a scout bee finds a good spot with lots of flowers they can tell the other bees where this spot is. They can show what direction the flowers are by the direction of the sun and how long away it is so that the other bees can find it. They dance on the landing pad and on the frames inside the hive.   Here is some info i found on Wikipedia about the Waggle Dance.

Bee Dance

A waggle dance consists of one to 100 or more turns, each of which consists of two phases: the waggle phase and the return phase.

A worker bee's waggle dance involves running through a small figure-eight pattern: a waggle run (aka waggle phase) followed by a turn to the right to circle back to the starting point (aka return phase), another waggle run, followed by a turn and circle to the left, and so on in a regular alternation between right and left turns after waggle runs.

During the waggle-dance a bee produce pheromones from there abdomens which are spread though the air.

The direction and duration of waggle runs are closely correlated with the direction and distance of the resource being advertised by the dancing bee. For cavity-nesting honey bees, flowers that are located directly in line with the sun are represented by waggle runs in an upward direction on the vertical combs, and any angle to the right or left of the sun is coded by a corresponding angle to the right or left of the upward direction. The distance between hive and recruitment target is encoded in the duration of the waggle runs. The farther the target, the longer the waggle phase.

Smart little creatures aren't they :o)

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