Visual control of flight speed in honeybees

Baird, Emily, Srinivasan, Mandyam V., Zhang, Shaowu and Cowling, Ann (2005) Visual control of flight speed in honeybees. Journal of Experimental Biology, 208 20: 3895-3905. doi:10.1242/jeb.01818

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Author Baird, Emily
Srinivasan, Mandyam V.
Zhang, Shaowu
Cowling, Ann
Title Visual control of flight speed in honeybees
Journal name Journal of Experimental Biology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0022-0949
Publication date 2005
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1242/jeb.01818
Open Access Status File (Publisher version)
Volume 208
Issue 20
Start page 3895
End page 3905
Total pages 11
Place of publication Cambridge
Publisher Company of Biologists Ltd
Language eng
Subject 06 Biological Sciences
Abstract Visual control of flight speed in honeybees (Apis mellifera L.) was investigated by training them to fly through a specially constructed tunnel in which the motion, contrast and texture of the patterns lining the walls could be varied. Manipulation of pattern motion revealed that the speed of flight is controlled by regulating the image motion that is experienced by the eyes. Flight speed is surprisingly robust to changes in the contrast and/or spatial texture of the visual environment, suggesting that the underlying movement-detecting mechanisms estimate the speed of image motion in the eye largely independently of these parameters. This ensures that flight speed depends primarily on the distances to nearby surfaces and not upon their particular visual properties, such as contrast or visual texture. The removal of image motion cues drastically compromises the regulation of flight speed, underscoring their role in this function.
Keyword Biology
insect flight
Apis mellifera
image motion
pattern motion
pattern texture
pattern contrast
Freely Flying Honeybees
Optic Flow
Q-Index Code C1

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) - Collection
Queensland Brain Institute Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 72 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 80 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Fri, 25 Jan 2008, 16:41:59 EST