IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Wing wear affects wing use and choice of floral density in foraging bumble bees

Listed author(s):
  • Danusha J. Foster
  • Ralph V. Cartar
Registered author(s):

    Damage to structures that enable mobility can potentially influence foraging behavior. Bumble bees vary in extent of individual wing wear, a trait predicted to affect mechanical performance during foraging. This study asks 1) do bumble bees distribute themselves across different floral densities in accordance with their concurrent wing wear? and 2) does wing use in foraging bumble bees depend on concurrent wing wear? We observed individually identifiable bumble bees foraging in 1-m-super-2 patches of high and low floral density of 3 plant types (Geranium viscosissimum, Melilotus alba/officinalis, and Monarda fistulosa). Bee preference for flower density was determined by an interaction between wing area and bee body size: small worn-winged bees selected patches of higher density, whereas large worn-winged bees selected patches of lower density. Bees with more worn wings spent less time in flight and flew less often; however, only foragers collecting pollen appeared to reduce wing-use behavior (i.e., wing collision frequency) that leads to loss of wing area. This study demonstrates that individuals respond to wing damage in different ways depending on their body size and foraging task. Wing wear clearly influences foraging behavior of worker bumble bee. Copyright 2011, Oxford University Press.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by International Society for Behavioral Ecology in its journal Behavioral Ecology.

    Volume (Year): 22 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 52-59

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:oup:beheco:v:22:y:2011:i:1:p:52-59
    Contact details of provider: Postal:
    Oxford University Press, Great Clarendon Street, Oxford OX2 6DP, UK

    Fax: 01865 267 985
    Web page:

    Order Information: Web:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:beheco:v:22:y:2011:i:1:p:52-59. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Oxford University Press)

    or (Christopher F. Baum)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.