January 23 2013

12:00 LSB 2320

Kirk Visscher
Department of Entomology, University of California, Riverside

How Honey Bee Swarms Decide on a New Home


Honey bees in search of a new home site make complex collective decisions among the alternatives discovered. Honeybee swarms and complex brains show many parallels in how they make decisions. In both, separate populations of units (bees or neurons) integrate noisy evidence for alternatives, and, when one population exceeds a threshold, the alternative it represents is chosen. One key feature of a brain—cross inhibition between the evidence-accumulating populations—also exists in a swarm as it chooses its nesting site.















































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































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