Location Drone Congregation Areas (DCA) or honey bee mating congregation
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Honey bee mating at 30 meters above ground and 12 miles/hour make studies on conservation, hybridization, and mating behavior difficult. Establishing a reliable set of criteria that could aid in finding DCAs are important for conservation, for assessing genetic diversity, and to study bee behavior. Based on published descriptions of few DCAs we made extensive searches in areas that are up to 2 km up from known bee colonies. In 36 locations we found 8 DCAs. Through global positioning of the locations and landscape analyses we determined extensive characteristics of each location at 100m, 200m, 400m, and 800m diameter around the geometric center. We used these data in recursive partitioning analyses to identify characteristic associated with presence of a DCAs.