Bees are Tiny But Mighty

Bees are Tiny But Mighty

Despite their small size, scientists discovered that bees are highly intelligent. The results of researchers at Queen Mary University of London have shown that bees gain knowledge from their environment and learning from each other. During an experiment, scientists demonstrated how to move a yellow ball into the center of a platform. Then, the bees had to do the same. Some thought the ball moved on its own, while the scientists secretly moved it below with a magnet. For other bees, they moved the ball with a plastic bee on a stick.

 

The bees soon began moving the balls by themselves after they realized that the reward came from when the ball was situated in the right place. After that, they placed the trained bees with untrained bees, and after the untrained bees observed the trained bees once, they began to copy and improve on what they were doing. For example, even if the demonstrator bee picked a ball that was farther away, they would still pick the one that was closer.
In 2009, behavioral ecologist and researcher Lars Chittka did a study on the brain networks of bees called “Are Bigger Brains Better?” The conclusion she came to was that even though they some species have small brains, they can still be highly complex. In the past, scientific communities have sometimes theorized that the smaller the brain is, the less intelligent the species is. More recent research in 2014 found that to access sugar, bees could learn increasingly difficult tasks, like learning to slide or lift caps. Overall, bees have a small brain but can do many challenging tasks and activities.