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Honeybee democracy

Author: Thomas D Seeley
Publisher: Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, ©2010.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"Honeybees make decisions collectively---and democratically. Every year, faced with the life-or-death problem of choosing and traveling to a new home, honeybees stake everything on a process that includes collective fact-finding, vigorous debate, and consensus building. In fact, as world-renowned animal behaviorist Thomas Seeley reveals, these incredible insects have much to teach us when it comes to collective  Read more...
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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Thomas D Seeley
ISBN: 9780691147215 0691147213
OCLC Number: 587249075
Description: 273 pages : illustrations (some color), map ; 25 cm
Contents: Life in a honeybee colony --
Dream home for honeybees --
Scout bees' debate --
Agreement on best site --
Building a consensus --
Initiating the move to new home --
Steering the flying swarm --
Swarm as cognitive entity --
Swarm smarts.
Responsibility: Thomas D. Seeley.

Abstract:

Honeybees make decisions collectively - and democratically. This book reveals that these incredible insects have much to teach us when it comes to collective wisdom and effective decision making. It  Read more...

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One of Financial Times (FT.com)'s Books of the Year in Nonfiction Round-Up in the Science & Environment list for 2010 "Dr. Seeley is an engaging guide. His enthusiasm and admiration for honeybees is Read more...

 
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    schema:reviewBody ""Honeybees make decisions collectively---and democratically. Every year, faced with the life-or-death problem of choosing and traveling to a new home, honeybees stake everything on a process that includes collective fact-finding, vigorous debate, and consensus building. In fact, as world-renowned animal behaviorist Thomas Seeley reveals, these incredible insects have much to teach us when it comes to collective wisdom and effective decision making. A remarkable and richly illustrated account of scientific discovery, Honeybee Democracy brings together, for the first time, decades of Seeley's pioneering research to tell the amazing story of house hunting and democratic debate among the honeybees." "In the late spring and early summer, as a bee colony becomes overcrowded, a third of the hive stays behind and rears a new queen, while a swarm of thousands departs with the old queen to produce a daughter colony. Seeley describes how these bees evaluate potential nest sites, advertise their discoveries to one another, engage in open deliberation, choose a final site, and navigate together---as a swirling cloud of bees---to their new home. Seeley investigates how evolution has honed the decision-making methods of honeybees over millions of years, and he considers similarities between the ways that bee swarms and primate brains process information. He concludes that what works well for bees can also work well for people: any decision-making group should consist of individuals with shared interests and mutual respect, a leader's influence should be minimized, debate should be relied upon, diverse solutions should be sought, and the majority should be counted on for a dependable resolution." "An impressive exploration of animal behavior, Honeybee Democracy shows that decision-making groups, whether honeybee or human, can be smarter than even the smartest individuals in them."--Jacket." ;
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