Bees and Flowers: some chronicles to be disclosed
University of Florence Researcher
In everyone's mind, bees and flowers are linked. It is known that bees are important for plant reproduction, and that plants are providing the resources on which bees feed (and make honey!). While on abundance and differences of flowers anyone could easily state, complexity of bees is known to a much lesser extent. Complexity of nesting behaviour: living alone in a subterranean tunnel is not as living in a large hive with thousands of sisters. Complexity of feeding needs: what is best, proteins or sugars? Complexity of mind: choices, memory, individual constraints.
Opposite to other research topics, the human interest in the mechanisms that support pollination has followed an irregular trend. Today, researches on the topic have spread and involve different disciplines. Notwithstanding, it is precisely from studies on animal behaviour that we get important insights.
An introductory overview of the two partners (the flowers and the bees) will be followed by acknowledging the history of pollination, then showing how basic field observations can still stimulate and introduce new questions that previous theories considered already solved.
Thursday, 10th March 2016
FCUL (C6 Building) – 12.00h-13.00h – Room 6.2.51