5.4. Bioassays

Using bioassays to assess the effect of a stimulus can pose various challenges. To identify behaviour modifying cues, a simple and repeatable bioassay, in which all parameters are well controlled, with the experimental conditions kept as close as possible to the natural ones is recommended. The bioassay should also be a discriminative and quantitative test that measures the induction of the tested behaviour. In studies of workers attraction to the queen, commonly used bioassays can be carried in or out of the colony. Each has its own advantages and shortcomings detailed below.