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Journal of comparative physiology

, Volume 85, Issue 1, pp 25–36 | Cite as

Orientation of bees by the polarized light of a limited area of the sky

  • Victor Zolotov
  • Leonid Frantsevich
Article

Summary

  1. 1.

    The direction of dances of bees, trained for a place in the certain direction, were recorded in a horizontal hive sheltered with a white tent, where windows exposing the blue sky could be opened. The check distribution of directions indicated by dancing foragers was recorded under the completely sheltered tent.

     
  2. 2.

    The orientation of bees was faultless under the window exposing the area of the sky within the solid angle of 0.157 ster, i.e. occupying 2,5% of the sky hemisphere, in the belt of maximal polarization (polarization content 30–40%). The accuracy of orientation diminished with decrease in the size of the window (Table 1, Kg. 4). Increasing the polarization to 100% level by means of polaroid filter, one scarcely improves the orientation capacity of bees (Table 2, Pig. 4). The threshold area of the blue sky necessary for orientation is estimated as 0.027 to 0.039 ster.

     
  3. 3.

    When the sky was exposed through four small windows with total area of 0.157 ster but each one being of subthreshold size, in different arrangements (Fig. 3), the accuracy of orientation diminished immediately with increase of spacing among small windows (Table 3). The size of the zone of full summation for a system integrating the signal about polarization could not exceed considerably the size of a field sufficient for the faultless orientation.

     
  4. 4.

    The fields for the threshold and faultless orientation are described in terms of arrays of ommatidia. The number of ommatidia in these fields are 25–50 and 150–200 respectively.

     

Keywords

Receptive Field Ster Small Window Density Index Maximal Polarization 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1973

Authors and Affiliations

  • Victor Zolotov
    • 1
  • Leonid Frantsevich
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Insect Physiology, Institute of ZoologyAcademy of Sciences of Ukrainian SSRKiev

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