Honeybees modify flight trajectories in turbulent wind

Eberhard Bodenschatz / Bardia Hejazi
Max Planck Institute Dynamics and Self-Organization, Göttingen, Germany

Date(s) : 15/12/2022   iCal
14 h 00 min - 15 h 00 min

The study of bee flight and their collective behavior has been the focus of many studies that have offered us insight into how bees are able to fly and how they communicate with one another. However not much is known about honeybee fight dynamics in turbulent and windy conditions and how they manage to maneuver in such environments.

In this talk we will be presenting results from recent experiments performed to study honeybee flight and behavior in windy conditions in their natural habitat. We first present experiments where we use 3 GoPro cameras to track honeybees in three-dimensions (3D) during their flight to and from the hive. We create different turbulent conditions using fans and a mobile active grid, similar to one used in high Reynolds number wind tunnel experiments. We find that under the conditions investigated, honeybees seem to exhibit similar flight dynamics which are not dependent on the characteristics of the different flows they are exposed to. In flight, honeybees accelerate slowly and decelerate rapidly. While this behavior is observed in both calm and windy conditions, it is increasingly dominant in windy conditions where short straight trajectories are broken up by turns and increased maneuvering.

Additionally, we will present more recent work studying honeybee landing and takeoff dynamics near the hive entrance and their interactions with each other in different conditions.

IOSSB Seminar

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