The effects of ambient air pressure on oxygen consumption of resting and hovering honeybees

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Abstract

1. The rate of oxygen consumption for honeybees hovering at normal air pressure was 94.3 ml O2 g-1 h-1. The rate of oxygen consumption declined for honeybees hovering at higher air pressures, and declined for bees hovering at pressures less than 600 Torr. 2. The rate of oxygen consumption by resting honeybees was slightly, but significantly, affected by air pressure. Mean resting rate of oxygen consumption at normal air pressure was 12.3 ml O2 g-1 h-1. 3. The rate of oxygen consumption for honeybees during a 30 min peroid after hovering was 3.0 ml O2 g-1 h-1 at normal pressure, and increased slightly but significantly, at lower pressures. 4. Thoracic temperature was maintained relatively constant at 31-33°C during hovering, and was slightly, but significantly, elevated at lower air pressures. 5. The decline in rate of oxygen consumption for honeybees hovering at high pressure is attributed to decreased power requirements for flight, whereas the decline in rate of oxygen consumption at low pressures is attributed to the limitation of low {Mathematical expression} to oxygen transport capacity. 6. The rate of change in oxygen consumption at low air pressures suggests that the inertial power requirement for hovering flight is about 60 ml O2 g-1 h-1 whereas the aerodynamic power requirement is about 33 ml O2 g-1 h-1. © 1981 Springer-Verlag.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-437
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Comparative Physiology B: biochemical, systemic, and environmental physiology
Volume141
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1981

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