dice

How does a honeybee find food?

diceHow is a bee told where to find food? Bees se a primitive but truly symbolic language—the only such means of communication known to exist in nonhumans—to guide each other to food. When a worker bee returns to the hive from a foray, it performs a kind of dance. From those simple steps the observing workers collect all the information they need—not only how far to fly, but in what direction. The dance is executed on the vertical face of a comb; the pull of gravity tells the bee which way is “down,” so that it can orient the dance steps in space. The direction in which each maneuver points is very important if the other workers are to find the food.