Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/7158
Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Foraging bumblebees avoid flowers already visited by conspecifics or by other bumblebee species
Authors: Goulson, Dave
Hawson, Sadie A
Stout, Jane C
Contact Email: dave.goulson@stir.ac.uk
Issue Date: Jan-1998
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation: Goulson D, Hawson SA & Stout JC (1998) Foraging bumblebees avoid flowers already visited by conspecifics or by other bumblebee species, Animal Behaviour, 55 (1), pp. 199-206.
Abstract: Honey bees, Apis mellifera, use short-lived repellent scent marks to distinguish and reject flowers that have recently been visited by themselves or by siblings, and so save time that would otherwise be spent in probing empty flowers. Conversely, both honey bees and bumblebees, Bombus spp., can mark rewarding flowers with scent marks that promote probing by conspecifics. We examined detection of recently visited flowers in a mixed community of bumblebees foraging on comfrey, Symphytum officinale, in southern England. When foraging among inflorescences on a plant, three abundant species of Bombus probed fewer inflorescences more than once than would be expected from random foraging. Bees frequently encountered inflorescences but departed without probing them for nectar. Examination of the incidence of such rejections in the two most common species,B. terrestris and B. pascuorum, revealed that the low incidence of multiple probing visits was due to two factors: bees both foraged systematically and selectively rejected inflorescences that they had previously visited. When presented with inflorescences of known history, bees selectively rejected those that had been recently visited by themselves or by conspecifics compared with randomly selected inflorescences. They were also able to distinguish inflorescences that had been visited by other Bombus species. Bees were unable to distinguish and reject inflorescences from which the nectar had been removed artificially. We conclude that these Bombus species are probably using scent marks left by previous visitors. The significance of deposition and detection of interspecific scent marks for competitive interactions between species is discussed.
Type: Journal Article
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/7158
DOI Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1006/anbe.1997.0570
Rights: The publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository. Please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study.
Affiliation: Biological and Environmental Sciences
University of Southampton
University of Southampton

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
goulson_animalbehaviour_1998.pdf136.46 kBAdobe PDFUnder Embargo until 31/12/2999     Request a copy

Note: If any of the files in this item are currently embargoed, you can request a copy directly from the author by clicking the padlock icon above. However, this facility is dependant on the depositor still being contactable at their original email address.

This item is protected by original copyright



Items in the Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

If you believe that any material held in STORRE infringes copyright, please contact library@stir.ac.uk providing details and we will remove the Work from public display in STORRE and investigate your claim.