Researchers have found that before leaving its nest for hunting, a solitary wasp usually performs a typical type of smooth flight. Known as ‘learning flights,’ it refers to looping repetitively around the nest location.
Researchers feel that these kinds of departure flights make the wasp familiar and assist him to return home from his hunting. However, they weren’t yet sure as to how this is done.
After ten years of struggle, scientists have finally discovered the entire process. They say that wasps back away from nests in widening arcs and pivot around the nest while looking back.
When they fly along these arcs, the nest environment is seen from different distances and directions and the nest is always kept on the right or left visual field, says Jochen Zeil, a co-author and an Ecological Neuroscience Investigator at Australian National University.
High-speed cameras were used by scientists for understanding this view of the world through the eyes of the wasp. These were coordinated with the movements of the wasp for recording their return flights and departures. They used software for following the wasp’s head positions and offering a visual idea about the direction in which the wasp was looking.
A 3D replica of a topography surrounding the nest was recorded and created by scientists with the help of the panoramic image. With these technologies, researchers could have an excellent view of the wasp. Apart from visual images, the researchers also understood the wasp’s point of view.
They flew to the nest just like wasps and understood everything. The comparison between the simulations of investigators and movements of the wasp matched.
As per CS Monitor News, before wasps leave to forage, a peculiar aerodynamic exercise is performed by it. They loop in arcs around the nest and gain height and distance gradually before they fly. Now, a video has been created by the scientists of this round trip from insects.