Comparison of flight design of Asian honeybee dronesReport as inadecuate

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Abstract : The excess power index integrating body dry mass, thorax-to-body dry mass and wing surface area was compared in drones of seven Asian Apis species. There are two statistically distinct groups of drones: drones of the dwarf honeybees form one class, all other Asian species belong to the second. Drones of dwarf honeybees have a 36% ergonomic advantage in power availability and 20% advantage in available excess power over all other drones. Comparisons of flight dimensions between conspecific workers and drones show a highly statistically significant sexual dimorphism for flight. Although drones of all seven tested species are always bigger than their workers their excess power index is some 15% better. It is suggested that prowess of flight in drones is driven by the need to compete and mate with queens flying high in the air while worker bees forage nectar and pollen on flowers.

Keywords : body dry mass wing surface excess power Apis drones sexual dimorphism

Author: Sarah Radloff H. Randall Hepburn Gudrun Koeniger



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