TitleDiverse communication strategies in bees as a window into adaptations to an unpredictable world.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2023
AuthorsAlves DA, George EA, Kaur R, Brockmann A, Hrncir M, Grüter C
JournalProc Natl Acad Sci U S A
Date Published2023 Jun 13
KeywordsAcclimatization, Animals, Bees, Communication, Ecosystem

Communication is a fundamental feature of animal societies and helps their members to solve the challenges they encounter, from exploiting food sources to fighting enemies or finding a new home. Eusocial bees inhabit a wide range of environments and they have evolved a multitude of communication signals that help them exploit resources in their environment efficiently. We highlight recent advances in our understanding of bee communication strategies and discuss how variation in social biology, such as colony size or nesting habits, and ecological conditions are important drivers of variation in communication strategies. Anthropogenic factors, such as habitat conversion, climate change, or the use of agrochemicals, are changing the world bees inhabit, and it is becoming clear that this affects communication both directly and indirectly, for example by affecting food source availability, social interactions among nestmates, and cognitive functions. Whether and how bees adapt their foraging and communication strategies to these changes represents a new frontier in bee behavioral and conservation research.

Alternate JournalProc Natl Acad Sci U S A
PubMed ID37279263