18.104.22.168. Behavioural categories
following behavioural categories are a synthesis of the numerous studies (Elzen
et al., 2001; Neumann et al., 2001c; Solbrig, 2001; Ellis 2005;
Ellis et al., 2002c, 2003c, 2004a,b; Pirk and Neumann 2013) and can be
used to investigate interactions. The following behavioural categories were
Resting / Ignore (within 5 mm of a honey bee) - not moving at all, none of the other categories can be observed.
Walking - moving around (<5mm/sec without being chased by a SHB or worker).
Running - moving fast (>5-10 mm/ sec), without being chased by a SHB or worker.
Flee - moving fast (>5-10 mm/ sec), while being chased by a SHB or worker.
Being chased - a) by fellow SHB, b) by a worker c) by more than one worker.
Mating - male is mounting the female
NOTE: in this definition of the behavioural category mounting is used as a proxy for mating.
Feeding on - a) pollen store, b) nectar store, c) larvae, d) a dead honey bee worker, e) a dead SHB, f) a live honey bee worker.
Antennating with a SHB – antennal contact with one or more a SHB.
Antennating with a honey bee worker– antennal contact with any bee (e.g. with a guard bee (guarding the entrance of the hive (Rösch, 1925) or at a confinement site or prison (Neumann et al., 2001c; Ellis, 2005).
Trophallactic contact with worker bee – obtaining a drop of food from a bee that is presenting food between its mandibles.
Interfering with other SHB trophallactic contact with worker bee –obtaining food while another SHB gets fed.
Turtle-defence posture – stays motionless and tucks its head underneath the pronotum with the legs and antennae pressed tightly to the body.
Mount a bee - mounting the
workers’ abdomen and cutting with the mandibles through the tissue between the
There are more than 50 behavioural categories described for honey bees (see for example Kolmes, 1985; Neumann et al., 2001b; Pirk, 2002). The following state only the basic ones related to SHB:
Resting / Ignore (within 5 mm of a SHB) - –not moving at all, none of the other categories can be observed.
Walking –moves around at < 1 cm/sec.
Running – moves around at > 1 cm/sec.
Chasing - running and following an intruder (SHB).
Biting – mandibles are open and the bee tries to bit and grab the SHB.
Stinging - bends the abdomen to bring the stinger into position and / or sting is moving in and out of the sting sheath .
Trophallactic interaction with / feeding - a) another worker, b) queen, c) confined or SHB, d) one free running SHB – the worker regurgitates a droplet from its honey stomach, which can be observed between the mandibles and from which one or more food receivers will feed (SHBs or bees).
Guarding - a worker prevents a SHB from moving freely by keeping it at bay in a crack or a prison /confinement. This kind of pattern is often followed by feeding and/or biting.
Building prison (confinement) – chewing or / moulding the wax-propolis mixture constituting the barrier of the prison (confinement).
Final note: All categories can be further subdivided or merged depending on the needs of the experiment.