Margaret Couvillon

Back to list
Postal addressFunkstrasse 124
Office phone+41 (0)789541010
Mobile phone+41 (0)789541010
Job /  professional statusResearcher
Preferred COLOSS theme(s)   Environment
Research interestshoney bee foraging
 honey bee communication
 honey bee nestmate recognition
 honey bee division of labour

1. MJ Couvillon & FLW Ratnieks (2015). Environmental consultancy: dancing bee bioindicators to
evaluate landscape “health”. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 3, 44.
2. MJ Couvillon, TJ Boniface, AM Evripidou, CJ Owen, FLW Ratnieks (2015). Unnatural contexts
cause honey bee guards to adopt non-guarding behaviours. Ethology.
3. M Garbuzov, MJ Couvillon, R Schürch, FLW Ratnieks (2015). Honey bee dance decoding and pollen-
load analysis show limited foraging on spring-flowering oilseed rape, a potential source of neonicotinoid contamination. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment 203, 62-68
4. M Beekman, JC Makinson, MJ Couvillon, K Preece, TM Schaerf (2015). Honeybee linguistics – a
comparative analysis of the waggle dance among species of Apis. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 3, 11.
5. MJ Couvillon, R Schürch & FLW Ratnieks (2014). Dancing bees communicate a foraging
preference for rural lands in High Level Agri-Environment Schemes. Current Biology 24(11), 1212-1215.
6. MJ Couvillon, FC Riddell Pearce, C Accleton, KA Fensome, SLK Quah, Esme Taylor, and FLW
Ratnieks (2015). Honey bee foraging distance depends on month and forage type. Apidologie 46: 61-70.
7. MJ Couvillon, KA Fensome, SLK Quah, & R Schürch (2014) Summertime blues: August foraging
leaves honey bees empty-handed. Communicative and Integrative Biology, 7 (1) e28821:1-2.
8. MJ Couvillon, R Schürch & FWL Ratnieks (2014) Waggle dance distances as integrative indicators of
seasonal foraging challenges. PLoS One, 9 (4), e93495.
9. MJ Couvillon, FHID Segers, R Cooper-Bowman, G Truslove, D Lima, FS Nascimento, & FLW
Ratnieks (2013). Context affects nestmate recognition errors in honey bees and stingless bees. Journal of Experimental Biology 216 (16), 3055-3061.
10. R Schürch, MJ Couvillon, D Burns, K Tasman, D Waxman, & FLW Ratnieks (2013). Incorporating
variability in honey bee waggle dance decoding improves the mapping of communicated resource locations. Journal of Comparative Physiology A 199, 1143-1152.
11. FC Riddell Pearce, MJ Couvillon, FLW Ratnieks (2013) Hive relocation does not adversely affect
honey bee (Hymenoptera: Apidae) foraging. Psyche 2013, 1-8.
12. R Schürch & MJ Couvillon (2013). Too much noise on the dance floor: intra- and inter-dance
angular error in honey bee waggle dances. Communicative and Integrative Biology 6 (1)
13. T Wenseleers, JP Bacon, MJ Couvillon, M Kärcher, FS Nascimento, P Nogueira-Neto, EJH
Robinson, A Tofilski, FLW Ratnieks (2013) Bourgeois behavior and freeloading in the colonial orb-web spider Parawixia bistriata (Araneae, Araneidae). American Naturalist 182 (1).
14. H Al Toufailia, MJ Couvillon, FLW Ratnieks, C Grüter (2013) Honey bee waggle dance
communication:signal meaning and signal noise affect dance follower behavior. Behavioural Ecology and Sociobiology 67, 549-556.
15. FAL Contrera, MJ Couvillon, J Nieh (2012) Hymenopteran collective foraging and information
transfer about resources. Psyche 2012, 1-2.
16. MJ Couvillon, HLF Phillipps, R Schürch, & FWL Ratnieks (2012) Working against gravity:
horizontal honeybee waggle runs have greater angular scatter than vertical waggle runs. Biology Letters 8 (4), 540-543.
17. MJ Couvillon, FC Riddell Pearce, EL Harris-Jones, AM Kuepfer, SJ Mackenzie-Smith, LA Rozario,
R Schürch, & FWL Ratnieks (2012). Intra-dance variation among waggle runs and the design of efficient protocols for honey bee dance decoding. Biology Open 1, 467-472.
18. MJ Couvillon (2012). The dance legacy of Karl von Frisch. Insectes Sociaux 59 (3), 297-306.
19. MJ Couvillon, JS vZweden, FLW Ratnieks (2012) Model of collective decision-making in
nestmate recognition fails to account for individual discriminator responses and non-independent discriminator errors. Behavioural Ecology and Sociobiology 66, 339-341.
20. FAL Contrera, MJ Couvillon, J Nieh (2011) Hymenopteran group foraging and information
transfer about resources. Psyche 2011, 1-2.
21. MJ Couvillon, J Jandt, J Bonds, B Helm & A Dornhaus (2011) Percent fat is associated with
body size but not task in the bumble bee Bombus impatiens. Journal of Comparative
Physiology A.197, 1097-1104.
22. MJ Couvillon, SN Barton, JA Cohen, OK Fabricius, MH Kärcher, LS Cooper, MJ Silk, H
Helanterä, & FLW Ratnieks (2010) Alarm pheromones do not mediate rapid shifts in honey bee guard acceptance threshold. Journal of Chemical Ecology 36, 1306-1308.
23. MJ Couvillon, WOH Hughes, JA Perez-Sato, SJ Martin, & FLW Ratnieks (2010) Sexual
selection in honeybees: colony variation and the importance of size in male mating success. Behavioral Ecology 21 (3), 520-525.
24. MJ Couvillon, J Jandt, N Duong, & A Dornhaus (2010) Ontogeny of worker body size
distribution in bumble bee (Bombus impatiens) colonies. Ecological Entomology 35 (4), 424-435.
25. MJ Couvillon, G Fitzpatrick, & A Dornhaus (2010) Ambient air temperature does not predict
body size of foragers in bumble bees (Bombus impatiens). Psyche 2010.
26. MJ Couvillon & A Dornhaus (2010) Small worker bumble bees (Bombus impatiens) are hardier
against starvation than their larger sisters. Insectes Sociaux 57, 193-197.
23. W Gronenberg & MJ Couvillon. Brain Composition and Olfactory Learning in Honey Bees
(2010) Neurobiology of Learning and Memory 93 (3), 435-443.
24. MJ Couvillon, G DeGrandi-Hoffman, W Gronenberg (2010) Africanized honeybees are slower
learners than their European counterparts. Naturwissenschaften 97 (2), 153-160.
25. MJ Couvillon, GGF Roy, FLW Ratnieks (2009) Recognition errors by honey bee (Apis mellifera)
guards demonstrate overlapping cues in conspecific recognition. Journal of Apiculture Research 48, 225-232.
26. MJ Couvillon & A Dornhaus (2009) Location, location, location: larvae position inside the nest
is correlated with adult body size in worker bumble bees (Bombus impatiens).Proceedings of the Royal Society B 276, 2411-2418.
27. MJ Couvillon, EJH Robinson, B Atkinson, L Child, KR Dent, and FLW Ratnieks (2008) En
Guarde: Rapid changes in honey bee guarding to intense robbing demonstrates individual and colony level responses. Animal Behavior 76, 1653-1658.
28. MJ Couvillon & FLW Ratnieks (2008) Odour transfer between colonies of the stingless bee
Frieseomelitta varia demonstrates that entrance guards use an “undesirable-absent” cue recognition system. Behavioural Ecology and Sociobiology 62, 1099-1105.
29. MJ Couvillon, T Wenseleers, VL Imperatriz-Fonseca, P Nogueira-Neto, FLW Ratnieks (2008)
Comparative Study in Stingless Bees (Meliponini) Demonstrates that Nest Entrance Size Predicts Traffic and Defensivity. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 21 (1), 194-201.*
30. MJ Couvillon, JP Caple, SL Endsor, M Kärcher, TE Russell, DE Storey, FLW Ratnieks (2007)
Nest-mate recognition template of guard honeybees (Apis mellifera) is modified by wax
comb transfer. Biology Letters 3 (3), 228-230.
31. A Tofilski, MJ Couvillon, SE Evison, EJH Robinson, and FLW Ratnieks (2008) Pre-emptive
defensive self-sacrifice by ant workers. The American Naturalist 172 (2).
32. JA Perez-Sato, MJ Couvillon, WOH Hughes, FLW Ratnieks. (2008) Effects of hive spacing,
entrance orientation, and worker activity on nest relocation by honey bee queens. Apidologie 39, 708-713.
33. JA Perez-Sato, WOH Hughes, MJ Couvillon, FLW Ratnieks (2007) Improved technique for
introducing four-day old virgin queens to mating hives that uses artificial and natural queen cells for introduction. Journal of Apiculture Research, 46 (1), 28-33.