Honey Bees Can Learn the Difference Between Even and Odd Numbers

Honey Bees and Mathematics
Honey Bees and Mathematics - MARTIN RUEGNERGETTY IMAGES

The relationship with mathematics has emerged with researches that it is not unique to humans. For the first time, honeybees exhibiting this ability are able to do without the need for a cerebral cortex, unlike humans. Honey bees are the first non-humans to show the ability to learn the difference between even and odd numbers. The honeybee experiment could lead to a better understanding of how humans perform parity separation (even or odd).

The matching process may not be as complicated as previously believed. People can easily learn the difference between even numbers and odd numbers. And until a new study came out, people believed we were the only species capable of this feat, known as companion duty.

All this can change with the knowledge that honey bees can learn to tell the difference between even and odd groups.

With just a fraction of the size of our brains, either the parity game isn't as complex as we once thought, or honeybees have a different way of learning about parity. The human brain works with 86 billion neurons. A honey bee's brain has a little more than a million neurons.

The study was published last week in "The journal Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution." He emphasized how honey bees "show the ability to learn the concepts of odd and even."

They then applied the concepts to numbers larger than the researchers believed they could understand. Everything was pretty impressive for a flying insect.

“The findings should encourage further research into parity processing in a wider range of species.”

According to the researchers, “the aim of this study is to learn more about their biological underpinnings, evolutionary factors, and prospective technological advances for concept processing.”

"These findings suggest that beyond cultural transmission, odd and even processing tasks may have a biological basis for how numbers are processed."

Our brave honeybee warriors were divided into two control groups for the study. A group of bees were taught to expect a sugar water treat when placed on even-numbered cards after being shown cards containing one to ten printed forms. Landing on odd-numbered cards, on the other hand, resulted in a bitter quinine. The second group discovered the opposite. Pair-odd training continued until the honeybees were able to choose the correct answer at least 80% of the time.

While humans showed that they could understand even numbers faster, honeybees showed the opposite: The group that received sugar water for odd-numbered groups learned faster.

The research then took a bold step, going beyond the previous ten constraints to include either groups of 11 or 12. In the master class, the bees maintained an accuracy rate of over 70%.

The scientists suggest that more research is needed to understand how honeybees learn to classify numbers by parity, and whether this is a cognitively complex, simple, or pre-existing brain mechanism. “It suggests that alternative brain regions can assist with such abilities,” because while humans use the cortex for number processing, honeybees can do without one. This concept could lead to a shift in how we treat similar human activities.

According to the scientists, this understanding could help them build a more efficient machine learning model by showing that "it is possible to create neuromorphic computational solutions with relatively simple mechanisms."

If the honey bee can do it, humans can too.

Source: PopularMecahanics

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