Ever been overworked, tired and felt muddle-headed? Research now shows honey bees suffer from the same thing—and we understand why.
A honey bee’s life is hardly relaxing. Every day forager bees make many trips, traveling long distances, to gather vital resources of pollen and nectar from flowers. They have to deal with predators, challenging weather conditions, and the very real risk of getting lost.
Just as chronic stress affects mental abilities in humans, our recent study suggests these stressful foraging activities reduce bees’ ability to solve problems, by changing the connectivity between specific neurons in the brain.