Experimental access to associative learning in honeybeesJ. Mauelshagen and U. Greggers
Institut für Neurobiologie, Freie Universität Berlin, Königin-Luise-Str 28/30, 1000 Berlin 33, Germany
Abstract - The pioneering work on the behavior and physiology of bees provides a fundamental framework on which new experiments can be designed in order to investigate the nature of associative learning in bees. Such studies require investigations not only on the behavior of free-flying bees, but also on the behavior of restrained bees as a basis for studies on the cellular level. In order to combine the results about free-flying bees with the results obtained in the laboratory, it is first necessary to test the validity of the restrained preparation. Therefore, one has to deal with the clarification of associations formed during both classical conditioning and instrumental learning. If it is possible to identify comparable associations, then the results could lead to mutually supportive interpretations with respect to the mechanisms and biological meaning of learning and memory in the honeybee.
Key words: Apis mellifera / instrumental learning / classical conditioning / associative learning