Thursday, May 27, 2010

Day 147

100% chance of rain, they are saying, so, I guess it really is going to rain. It Thursday - almost Friday - almost payday- almost get out of work at 3:30 and almost the 3 day weekend.
I love bees. After reading the book The Secret Life of Bees I have become even a bigger fan.
Honey bees communicate with one another by "dancing".
When a worker bee who has found a good source of nectar returns to the hive, she executes a 'dance' on the vertical surface of the comb. The dance takes the form of a flattened figure 8. The angle between the vertical and the flattened, central part of the figure 8 represents the angle between the hive, the sun and the nectar source. If the dancing bee waggles her abdomen during this section of the dance it indicates that the nectar source is some distance away. In the darkness of the hive, the workers follow the dancing bee round and learn the direction and distance of the food source. The dancing bee also regurgitates some of the nectar to offer the followers who, therefore, learn the taste of it. The scent from the flower might also help identify its source.
More about the dance of the bees:
Waggle dance is a term used in beekeeping and ethology for a particular figure-eight dance of the honey bee. By performing this dance, successful foragers can share with their hive mates information about the direction and distance to patches of flowers yielding nectar and pollen, to water sources, or to new housing locations. Thus the waggle dance is a mechanism whereby successful foragers can recruit other bees in their colony to good locations for collecting various resources. It was once thought that bees had two distinct recruitment dances — round dances and waggle dances — the former for indicating nearby targets and the latter for indicating distant targets, but it is now known that a round dance is simply a waggle dance with a very short waggle run. Austrian ethologist and Nobel laureate Karl von Frisch was one of the first who translated the meaning of the waggle dance.
The more I learn about them the more I am amazed.

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