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Bumblebees can discriminate between scent-marks deposited by conspecifics

Overview of attention for article published in Scientific Reports, March 2017
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (99th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (98th percentile)

Mentioned by

news
24 news outlets
blogs
4 blogs
twitter
31 tweeters
facebook
2 Facebook pages
wikipedia
1 Wikipedia page

Citations

dimensions_citation
8 Dimensions

Readers on

mendeley
53 Mendeley
Title
Bumblebees can discriminate between scent-marks deposited by conspecifics
Published in
Scientific Reports, March 2017
DOI 10.1038/srep43872
Pubmed ID
Authors

Richard F. Pearce, Luca Giuggioli, Sean A. Rands

Abstract

Bumblebees secrete a substance from their tarsi wherever they land, which can be detected by conspecifics. These secretions are referred to as scent-marks, which bumblebees are able to use as social cues. Although it has been found that bumblebees can detect and associate scent-marks with rewarding or unrewarding flowers, their ability at discriminating between scent-marks from bumblebees of differing relatedness is unknown. We performed three separate experiments with bumblebees (Bombus terrestris), where they were repeatedly exposed to rewarding and unrewarding artificial flowers simultaneously. Each flower type carried scent-marks from conspecifics of differing relatedness or were unmarked. We found that bumblebees are able to distinguish between 1. Unmarked flowers and flowers that they themselves had scent-marked, 2. Flowers scent-marked by themselves and flowers scent-marked by others in their nest (nestmates), and 3. Flowers scent-marked by their nestmates and flowers scent-marked by non-nestmates. The bumblebees found it more difficult to discriminate between each of the flower types when both flower types were scent-marked. Our findings show that bumblebees have the ability to discriminate between scent-marks of conspecifics, which are potentially very similar in their chemical composition, and they can use this ability to improve their foraging success.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 31 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 53 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 53 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 13 25%
Student > Ph. D. Student 10 19%
Student > Bachelor 10 19%
Researcher 7 13%
Other 4 8%
Other 9 17%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 31 58%
Environmental Science 10 19%
Unspecified 6 11%
Chemistry 2 4%
Neuroscience 2 4%
Other 2 4%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 248. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 11 April 2017.
All research outputs
#46,527
of 12,956,181 outputs
Outputs from Scientific Reports
#612
of 61,331 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#2,448
of 254,296 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Scientific Reports
#13
of 1,134 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 12,956,181 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 99th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 61,331 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 15.4. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 254,296 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 1,134 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 98% of its contemporaries.