I just saw the funniest video of bumblebees(?) having sex. (mirror) As they were getting it on, there seemed to be an almost audible 'moaning' coming from the pair. From what I presume it was a sexual climax we heard!
Bees have neither vocal chords nor lungs, so I wonder: what is that sound?
As the pair is mating on a newspaper, I'm almost certain we're hearing transduced vibrations from the bees made audible through the paper and not the bees themselves. (Nonetheless, what a beautifully humorous anthropomorphism! Moaning bees certainly give vivid color to the birds and the bees!)
I have multiple theories:
- The ejaculation of sperm by the drone is known to be 'explosive', even rupturing the endophallus and making a 'popping' sound. I wouldn't call the sound in the video 'popping' by any means, though.
- (Un)controlled movements of legs or wings by either of the pair. This seems very likely considering the subjective frequency of the sound, but that's just speculation on my part.
- Perhaps it's the queen piping? I'm really grasping with this one. I don't even know if that species' queens pipe or even have the ability to pipe.
Any excited entomologists wanna fill me in?