Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

If You Use a Screen Reader

This content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.

Experimental Studies of Mimicry. 8. Further Investigations of Honeybees (Apis mellifera) and Their Dronefly Mimics (Eristalis spp.)

Jane Van Zandt Brower and Lincoln Pierson Brower
The American Naturalist
Vol. 99, No. 906 (May - Jun., 1965), pp. 173-187
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2459113
Page Count: 15
  • Read Online (Free)
  • Download ($19.00)
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Cite this Item
Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Experimental Studies of Mimicry. 8. Further Investigations of Honeybees (Apis mellifera) and Their Dronefly Mimics (Eristalis spp.)
Preview not available

Abstract

Controlled experiments were conducted with two series of ten toads (Bufo terrestris) as caged predators to test the effectiveness of mimicry of the honeybee (Apis mellifera) by the droneflies (Eristalis vinetorum and E. agrorum). A total of 501 flies and 468 bees were offered to the 20 toads, along with 1000 mealworms (Tenebrio molitor) which served as the standard edible insect. It was found that experimental toads which experienced the sting of the honeybee ate significantly fewer droneflies than did the control animals which were not stung by honeybees. Batesian mimicry was shown to be highly effective. Honeybees with their stinging mechanism intact were rejected by the toads to a significantly greater extent than those with it removed, indicating that the sting is the source of noxiousness. When the wings of the honeybees and droneflies were cut off to reduce their buzzing, the experimental toads rejected fewer than when the wings were intact. Therefore audio-mimicry of the buzzing bee as well as visual mimicry of the bee's color-pattern appears to be operating. The data in the present experiments were compared with those from an earlier one and for the first time show that mimetic advantage is proportional to the degree of noxiousness of the model. The more noxious bumblebees conferred greater protection from predation upon the robberflies than the honeybees did upon the droneflies, even though the latter are in fact much better visual mimics.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
173
    173
  • Thumbnail: Page 
174
    174
  • Thumbnail: Page 
175
    175
  • Thumbnail: Page 
176
    176
  • Thumbnail: Page 
177
    177
  • Thumbnail: Page 
178
    178
  • Thumbnail: Page 
179
    179
  • Thumbnail: Page 
180
    180
  • Thumbnail: Page 
181
    181
  • Thumbnail: Page 
182
    182
  • Thumbnail: Page 
183
    183
  • Thumbnail: Page 
184
    184
  • Thumbnail: Page 
185
    185
  • Thumbnail: Page 
186
    186
  • Thumbnail: Page 
187
    187