Agent-based modelling of nest site selection by bees and ants

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Thesis type
(Thesis) M.Sc.
Date created
Author: Bolis, Reem
In this study we develop an agent-based time discrete model to show how honeybees and ants are able to choose the best site available under different circumstances. We focus on the agent-based model introduced by Christian List, Christian Elsholtz and Thomas Seeley in their paper: Independence and interdependence in collective decision making: an agent-based model of nest-site choice by honeybee swarms. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London B: Biological Sciences, 364(1518):755-762, 2009. In that paper, the authors model the nest site selection of honeybees using an agent model and study the affect of advertising and reliability in nest site selection of honeybees. We extend the model and run it for honeybees to show that being closed-minded reduces the accuracy of the final result. We then modify the model and apply it to two different species of ants. We study how changing different parameters such as colony size, threshold, advertising and reliability can affect the final consensus accuracy. We finally compare results from our mathematical simulations to that of lab experiments and discuss the similarities and differences between the two insect species.
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Supervisor or Senior Supervisor
Thesis advisor: Fetecau, Razvan
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