With Tiny Brains, Bumblebees Solve Complex Flower Routing Math

GreenTracker| Scientists at Royal Holloway, University of London and Queen Mary, have discovered that bumblebees can find the solution to a complex mathematical problem that keeps computers busy for days. Bumblebees may look like they’re darting around, flirting with one flower after another. In reality, bees are effectively solving the ‘Travelling Salesman Problem’, and they are the first known animals to do so.

The Travelling Salesman must find the shortest route that allows him (or her) to visit all locations on the route.

Using computer controlled artificial flowers, the bees were observed to see if they just flitted around the meadow or landscape in the order of discovery, or whether they flew the shortest route. With their tiny brains, bees solved math problems neither computers nor high school graduates in America can solve. via Science Daily