Bees Are Smart

March 18, 2014 at 5:14 PM Leave a comment

I swear, we so underestimate the intelligence of every single animal below us:

Bees Capable of Learning Feats with Tasty Prize in Sight

They may have tiny brains, but bumblebees are capable of some remarkable learning feats, especially when they might get a tasty reward, according to two studies by University of Guelph researchers.

 
 
 

The researchers presented bees with a series of artificial flowers that required ever-more challenging strategies, such as moving objects aside or upwards, to gain a sugar syrup reward.

When inexperienced bees encountered the most complex flower first, they were unable to access the syrup reward and stopped trying. Bees allowed to progress through increasingly complex flowers were able to navigate the most difficult ones.

[…]

She and Kevan consider the study an example of scaffold learning, a concept normally restricted to human psychology in which learners move through increasingly complex steps.

In a second study recently published in Psyche, the researchers found bees learned by watching and communicating with other bees, a process called social learning.

More…

Good reason to respect the humble bumble bee.  Oh, and here’s another one:  They have a lot to do with feeding us.  We’d better take care of them:

Bees Taking Us With them via IrinaGreenVoice on Twitter

 

 

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Entry filed under: Animals (Other Than Us), Food.

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