Bumblebees use perfume patterns to tell flowers apart.
Study also suggests they can spot similarities between patterns of scent and those made with color.
Pollinators don’t just wing it when it comes to finding a sweet treat: the shape, colour, perfume and even electrical charge of flowers are all known to offer clues.
But now researchers say bumblebees also use another floral feature to guide them: how the concentration of a scent varies across the flower’s surface.
“[This study shows that] bees can tell the difference between flowers where the only difference is their spatial arrangement of scent – and that suggests they could use that information to make their foraging more efficient,” said Dr David Lawson, co-author of the research from the University of Bristol.
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* THESE STATEMENTS HAVE NOT BEEN EVALUATED BY THE FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION. THIS IS NOT INTENDED TO DIAGNOSE, TREAT CURE OR PREVENT ANY DISEASE.