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The Gathering Swarms

series: Nature

air date: 5/25/14 5:30 PM

This program looks at some of the most extraordinary swarms on the planet, including a view from inside a locust swarm, mayflies along the Mississippi, 17-year cicadas, and brine fly hatches over Lake Victoria. Superswarms of finch-like quelea in Africa merit attempts at control through assaults on their roosts, while aggressive swarms of silver carp in North American seem able to overcome any kind of restraint. Dangerous swarms of killer bees, however, can be controlled to the point that they can be worn as a human bee suit. But beyond the power of sheer numbers, increasingly complex and organized swarms eventually give rise to swarm intelligence that allows complex decisions to be made.

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