Main content

Waggle dance

Honey bees don't only steer by the sun, they use it to pass on instructions to one another. When one worker finds a fresh source of nectar in newly opend flowers, it fills its crop and flies back to the hive using the sun to navigate and does a 'waggle dance', to communicate the position of the flower. It waggles across the comb so that the angle of its waggled path to the vertical tells the other bees to fly out at the same angle to the sun. As the day goes on and the sun moves, the dancer continues its dance, and though unable to see the sun in the darkness of the hive, remarkably, it alters the angle of the dance accordingly. So the continuous stream of departing workers is always given the right flight path.

Release date:


2 minutes

Featured in...

More clips from Finding the Way