Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Once again StumbleUpon has lead me to an interesting article on insects.
This particular one is discussing some of the problem solving skills associated with hymenoptera–specifically Bumblebees.
The test was set up to determine if the bees could "find the shortest route between cities" (here as faux-flowers). Two researchers, Laura Chittka and Mathieu Lihoreau assessed how the bees would respond to the flowers: seeing "whether the bees would go after the flowers in the order in which they were discovered, or if they would figure out the shortest route among all the flowers even as new ones were added"
Ultimately they found that however the simulated field was manipulated, the Bumblebees consistently determined and followed the shortest path.
The article itself is not that long, it's definitely worth checking out.