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INTERACTION OF TASTE AND SMELL ON PERCEPTION OF SWEETNESS IN HONEY BEES, APIS MELLIFERA

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abstract
Perception of sweetness depends on sugar content, but organic volatiles produced by certain fruits result in an overestimation of sweetness by humans. It is unknown if this phenomenon occurs in other species. This project focuses on how the interaction of smell and taste modulate perception of sweetness in honey bees (Apis mellifera). Honey bees are generalist foragers that forage for nectar of varying sweetness at different flowering plants; it is well-documented that they readily discriminate different concentrations of sucrose and show a strong preference for higher concentrations. Honey bees also experience floral odors as they forage, creating the possibility that the combination of taste and odor might modulate perception of sweetness. Linalool, geraniol, and 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-ol were used as odorants that may enhance the perception of sweetness by honey bees found in some of the flowering plants honey bees forage upon; limonene and no odorant were used as controls. Bees were tested using gustatory response score (GRS) laboratory assays and gustatory acceptance score (GAS) field assays. In the GRS assays, only geraniol enhanced sweetness perception in honey bees compared with the limonene and no odor treatments. By contrast, there was no difference in responses to any compounds in the field studies.
subject
contributor
Pel, Allyson Vichetra (author)
Fahrbach, Susan E (committee chair)
Maier, Joost (committee member)
date
2019-05-24T08:35:41Z (accessioned)
2019-05-24T08:35:41Z (available)
2019 (issued)
degree
Biology (discipline)
identifier
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/93937 (uri)
language
en (iso)
publisher
Wake Forest University
title
INTERACTION OF TASTE AND SMELL ON PERCEPTION OF SWEETNESS IN HONEY BEES, APIS MELLIFERA
type
Thesis

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