Trade-off between travel distance and prioritization of high-reward sites in traplining bumblebeesReportar como inadecuado

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1 The University of Sydney Sydney 2 QMUL - Queen Mary University of London 3 RHUL - Royal Holloway University of London

Abstract : 1. Animals exploiting renewable resource patches are faced with complex multi-location routing problems. In many species, individuals visit foraging patches in predictable sequences called tra-plines. However, whether and how they optimize their routes remains poorly understood. 2. In this study, we demonstrate that traplining bumblebees Bombus terrestris make a trade-off between minimizing travel distance and prioritizing the most rewarding feeding locations. 3. Individual bees trained to forage on five artificial flowers of equal reward value selected the shortest possible route as a trapline. After introducing a single highly rewarding flower to the array, they readjusted their routes visiting the most rewarding flower first provided the departure distance from the shortest possible route remained small 18%. When routes optimizing the initial rate of reward intake were much longer 42%, bees prioritized short travel distances. 4. Under natural conditions, in which individual flowers vary in nectar productivity and replenish continuously, it might pay bees to prioritize highly rewarding locations, both to minimize the overall number of flowers to visit and to beat competitors. 5. We discuss how combined memories of location and quality of resource patches could allow bees and other traplining animals to optimize their routing decisions in heterogeneous environments .

Keywords : trapline foraging Travelling Salesman Problem distance reward trade-off optimal foraging theory spatial cog-nition Key-words: Bombus terrestris

Autor: Mathieu Lihoreau - Lars Chittka - Nigel E. Raine -



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