Monday, August 24, 2015

maladaptive behavior - washboarding

bee, beekeeping, Honeybee Ecology, Thomas D. Seeley, washboarding,
I'm re-reading the public library copy of Honeybee Ecology.  This time around, I discovered an explanation of washboarding.  On page 18,  the author describes bees moving forward and backward as "planing."  In the wild, bees scrub the rough wood landing area of a tree trunk hive. The same bee behavior on an already smooth man-made hive makes no sense.

Compared to honeybees in nature, the author lists other maladaptive behaviors such as the over production of honey and a reduced tendency to swarm .  These insights hurt my feelings.  I'll get over it, but are my motives bee fitness or honey production?  On reflection, why wouldn't my existential pain include beekeeping?

I'm looking forward to finding other gems missed in earlier readings of Honeybee Ecology.

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