Dancing Pollen Collectors

Dancing Pollen Collectors

Along with honey as a second indispensable food, the bee family collects pollen. Pollen gatherers also inform each other about a found abundant source of a bribe, and they do it in the same way as nectar gatherers. They use circular dances at close and wagging dances with a remote source of bribe to convey a message about distance and direction.

However, there is a slight difference: in the nectar collectors, the idea of ​​the form of flowers is conveyed with the help of a floral odor that has lingered on the body and brought in honey cinders. Pollen collectors do not bring fragrant nectar home, but they deliver a small fraction of the flowers they have visited – flower pollen. It has a specific smell, markedly different from the smell of petals and different in each type of flowers. Thus, pollen panties can be called fragrant messages. This is proved by the following experiment.

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Fig. 92. U – hive with bees; ы – a cup with flowers of a dogrose; K – cup with bell flowers.

We will prepare two feeding places for pollen gatherers. In one of them, a group of tagged bees collects pollen from a dog rose, on the other (K) – the second group collects this food from large bell flowers. Remove the flowers from both points and arrange a break in feeding. After some time, not finding the pollen, the pickers will stay at home, and only one of them from time to time flies out to explore to see if there is again here again something suitable for collection. We will place in the place where the bells stood, a fresh bouquet of the same flowers. The scout will immediately collect the update, fly home and begin to dance.

First after the break will pay attention to her dance bees, who had previously collected pollen

from the bells, since a familiar smell as if tells them that the flowers again give off pollen. Immediately they will hurry to the flowers of the bell, which soon thanks to the long dances beginners appear. But the pickers of pollen from the dog rose remain in the hive, since they do not know the smell of the bell flowers.

This is not enough to find out what is decisive – the smell of petals or the smell of pollen. Let’s do the experiment a little differently. We will arrange a break once again at both feeding points, after which we again offer bells to the bees, after replacing their own anthers with anthers of wild rose.

Dancing Pollen Collectors

Fig. 93. a – the flower of the bell; part of the flower corolla is removed and the inside of the flower is visible; pollen from the bent anthers mostly stuck to the pestle; b – the flower of the bell, from which all parts containing pollen were removed, and replaced by the brier’s anthers; c – a flower of a dogrose; e – a flower of a dogrose after removal of its anthers. Inside the flower are placed anthers together with two pistils of bell flowers. Pl – anthers; Ps is a pestle.

The arriving bee-scout finds in the familiar place the flowers of the bell that she knows and collects an update in them. Thus, one of the bees who used to visit the flowers of the bell, in the same place and in the same flowers of the bell, collects an update from the rose hips pollen. Upon arriving home, she dances, but all her friends, who for hours and days gathered together with her pollen on the bell flowers, do not pay the slightest attention to her lively wagging dance. On the contrary, completely “strange” for her collectors of pollen from the dogrose rush to her, sniff her rejuvenation and fly to where they are used to collecting pollen from a dogrose and where now they are searching for his flowers in vain.

Although the bees let themselves be fooled, it became known that it did not smell the bell flowers, in which the bee swarmed, and the smell of the rose hips brought by her plays a decisive role. Reverse experience gives a similar result. The scout who collects the pollen of the bell in the flowers of the dog rose, mobilizes pollen collectors from the bell with the help of dancing.


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Мед и желчный пузырь.
Dancing Pollen Collectors