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Stranger Than Fiction

Bees dance to communicate

Published:Wednesday | March 15, 2023 | 11:35 PMBANG Bizarre

Scientists have revealed how baby bees are taught the 'waggle dance' by their elders so they can signal to their nestmates where the best food is.

The dance is a form of complex communication where the insects circle around in figure-eight patterns at a rapid pace and translates vital information about food – including direction, distance, type and quality of the meal.

Boffins had previously thought the routine was innate to bees but have now learned that it is picked up through experience.

James Nieh, a professor of ecology, behaviour and evolution at the University of California San Diego, said: "We are beginning to understand that, like us, animals can pass down information important for their survival through communities and families.

"Our new research shows that we can extend such social learning to include insects."



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