Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Bees Cook Wasp

Bee Defenders
from Wikimedia
There is an interesting 3 minute video on Wimp.com how Japanese bees destroy a predatory wasp scout by cooking it.  You may be familiar with the "waggle dance" that bees use to communicate the location of food to their clan.  There are a lot of studies on this aimed at breaking the code.  These Japanese bees use a similar dance to coordinate their attack on this threat to their hive.
How do they cook a wasp?  By combining their body heat, they raise the hive temperature higher that the wasp can tolerate while still in the bee's comfort range.  This probably sounds familiar to any of us who share a thermostat with someone else in the house.

For more interesting facts about bees, check out todayifoundout.com.  There is a long list of bee factoids that I hadn't heard before.

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