tech and geek stuff
Bees are first insects shown to understand the concept of zero
Aiming for a bee plus in mathsDonald Jusa/GettyBy Sam WongBees seem to understand the idea of zero – the first invertebrate shown to do so. When the insects were encouraged to fly towards a platform carrying...
Maths explains how bees can stay airborne with such tiny wings
Bees can fly and now we know whyAndrew MountcastleBy Timothy RevellBees have been flouting the laws of mathematics since the 1930s. Calculations have shown that their wings could not provide enough lift...
Insecticides damage bee socialization and learning skills, study reports
The effects of neonicotinoid insecticides on bees has been widely covered in the news recently, with laboratory-based studies suggesting that the chemicals are harmful, and field studies which are much...
Spiders lure bees for dinner by making flowers look flashier
Dinner timeKim Taylor and Jane Burton/GettyBy Katie LanginAmbush hunters normally rely on the element of surprise, opting to stay hidden until the moment of attack. But some spiders go for a flashier...
Honeybee crisis linked to common pesticide
WASHINGTON — A common and much-criticized pesticide dramatically weakens already vulnerable honeybee hives, according to a new massive field study in three European countries.For more than a decade, the...
Strongest evidence yet that neonicotinoids are killing bees
imageBROKER/REX/ShutterstockBy Sam Wong There can be little doubt now that the world’s most widely used insecticides are bad for bees. Two new studies add to the mountain of evidence that neonicotinoids...
Rusty patched bumblebee added to endangered list
GATLINBURG, Tenn. -- In eastern Tennessee’s Smoky Mountains National Park, the only place you can now see a rusty patched bumblebee is inside of a drawer, part of the park’s nature collection.Entomologist...
Overuse of antibiotics brings risks for bees, and for us
Honeybees treated with a common antibiotic were half as likely to survive the week after treatment compared with a group of untreated bees, a finding that may have health implications for bees and people...
Bumblebees can tell who visited flowers by smelly footprints
Nick Ansell/PA WireBy New Scientist staff and Press AssociationSmelly footprints left by bumblebees can help them find good sources of food. The insects secrete invisible markers when they touch their...
Bees are even smarter than we realized
Enlarge / Heck yeah I'll move this ball if it means I'll get some sugar. I'm a bee, dammit!Lida Loukola/QMUL reader comments 2 Share this story You can now add bees to the rarefied list of tool-using...
Bees learn to play golf and show off how clever they really are
I’ll show you ball skillsLida Loukola/QMULBy Sam WongIt’s a hole in one! Bumblebees have learned to push a ball into a hole to get a reward, stretching what was thought possible for small-brained creatures....
Honeybees let out a ‘whoop’ when they bump into each other
Headbutts come as a surpriseSimon Colmer/NaturePLBy Sam WongWhoop whoop! A vibrational pulse produced by honeybees, long thought to be a signal to other bees to stop what they are doing, might actually...
Robotic bee could help pollinate crops as real bees decline
Robotic pollen collectorEijiro MiyakoBy Alice KleinA drone that can pollinate flowers may one day work side by side with bees to improve crop yields. About three-quarters of global crop species, from...
Honeybees welcome friendly migrants to hives but repel raiders
Please have your chemical cues ready for inspectionegon69/GettyBy Amitha KalaichandranHoneybees may have a unique system for accepting migrants. “Drifting” bees that wander into a neighbouring hive may...
Is a "cocktail" of "safe" pesticides killing off bees?
The past decade has been a rough one for honey bees in the United States. Bee colonies have been dying off in high numbers, with suspicion falling on agricultural pesticides like herbicides and fungicides,...
To bee or not to bee is the question
Who knew that bees were in such short numbers in the US. Picture: AFP THE US is on a mission to save one of nature’s busiest workers — bees! Seven species have now been placed on the endangered list. CNN...
Hawaii's native bees put on Endangered Species list
HONOLULU Federal authorities added seven yellow-faced bee species, Hawaii’s only native bees, for protection under the Endangered Species Act Friday, a first for any bees in the United States. The U.S....
Don’t worry, bee happy: Bees found to have emotions and moods
Happily buzzingimageBROKER/REX/ShutterstockBy Emily BensonWhoa! I feel nice, like sugar and spice… Bumblebees may experience something like happiness after getting a treat that makes them appear more...
Bees die needlessly as Zika prompts US state to spray pesticide
Micha Pawlitzki/GettyBy Anna Nowogrodzki It was an avoidable massacre. Beekeepers in Dorchester County, South Carolina, saw 48 of their hives killed off on 28 August. The culprit was a pesticide, sprayed...
Controversial pesticides may be lowering the sperm count of bees
Out for the countJulia Gavin / Alamy By Harry PettitMale bees may have inadvertently been taking contraceptives – a possible factor in the alarming decline in bee populations across North America and...
Water-bottle bees cool the hive after their overheated mates beg
Thirsty workAlbert de Wilde/Buiten-beeld/Minden Pictures/GettyBy Emily BensonTurn the air conditioner on, it’s a scorcher out there. When honeybee hives get too hot, thirsty bees beg their specialised,...
You’ve never seen a swarm of bees like this
Bees swarm on a car in the UK. Picture: Tom Moses/Facebook WHERE the Queen goes, the workers follow. That’s the lesson a Welsh grandmother learned after a gigantic swarm of 20,000 bees converged on her...
Bees Follow Car for 2 Days to Save Queen
How loyal are bees to their queen? Turns out incredibly. A swarm of bees in Wales followed a Mitsubishi Outlander SUV for two days after their queen apparently became trapped inside. According to CNN,...
Researchers: Bees Help Kenyan Farmers Fend Off Elephants
Elephant crop-raiding continues to be a major source of human-wildlife conflict in Kenya, so one elephant researcher is helping to alleviate the problem near Tsavo East National Park with beehive fences,...
San Francisco hotels become unlikely home to millions of bees
SAN FRANCISCO -- Stung hard by disease, sometimes deadly pesticides and colony collapse disorder, the country's bee population is only half of what it was 70 years ago. The epidemic reached its peak in...
Biologists discover sophisticated 'alarm' signals in honey bees
Bees can use sophisticated signals to warn their nestmates about the level of danger from predators attacking foragers or the nest, according to a new study. Biologists found that an Asian species of honey...
Bumblebees don't like sharing their flowers
Bumblebees don't play well with others and certainly don't want young upstarts barging in on their favourite foraging routes, researchers from Queen Mary University of London have found. The team's study,...
Bees are being poisioned by 57 pesticides used in EU
Bees are being poisoned by 57 different pesticides currently licensed for use in the European Union, according to new research.In a new study published in the Journal of Chromatography, researchers from...
Pollinators’ no. falls, to hit global food supply
The birds and the bees need help. Also, the butterflies, moths, wasps, beetles and bats. Without an international effort, a new report warns, increasing numbers of species that promote the growth of hundreds...
World's Pollinators, Food Supply Threatened, Study says
It is a simple but chilling statistic: 75 percent of the world's food supply relies on bees, birds and other pollinators, and they're increasingly threatened. That is part of the conclusion of a two-year...
Report warns wild bees may be heading for extinction
WASHINGTON -- Many species of wild bees, butterflies and other critters that pollinate plants are shrinking toward extinction, and the world needs to do something about it before our food supply suffers,...
There's a new clue about what's killing honeybees
One question that has had scientists buzzing in recent years is, "What is killing the bees?" Many reports have documented the mysterious decline in honeybee populations around the world, with research...
Honeybees know it’s going to rain, so work more before it starts
Anand Varma/Getty Busy bees get busier if the next day looks rainy. This is according to Xu-Jiang He and colleagues at Jiangxi Agricultural University in Nanchang, China, who attached tiny radio-frequency...
Sexual rebellion and murder among the bees
Image credit: Wikipedia. Scientists revealed Wednesday the trigger that can plunge a colony of obedient and sterile worker bees dutifully serving their queen into a chaotic swarm of sexual rebellion and...
EPA says pesticide harms bees in some cases
Credit: Lilla Frerichs/public domain A major pesticide harms honeybees when used on cotton and citrus but not on other big crops like corn, berries and tobacco, the Environmental Protection Agency found....
Maps reveal US “hotspots” where crops could fail in the future
How dire is the problem? Koh and his colleagues decided to find out by modeling what wild bee populations look like now—and how this might change in coming years. They used publicly available satellite...
New long-range micro backpacks for bees could provide vital information
Harnessing the bee's own electrical energy is the solution proposed by an exciting new project to create a lightweight and long range bee-tracking device. Bee populations, our vital crop and fruit pollinators,...
Headbanging Aussie bee takes a heavy metal approach to pollination
Research has for the first time revealed the heavy metal secret behind an Australian bee's unique approach to pollination: high-speed headbanging. Credit: Callin Switzer, Harvard University Research has...
Urban hives can help safeguard the future of food, says a scientist and beekeeper
If you eat food, then you like bees. It's estimated that one-third of the typical American diet depends on pollination by bees, and absent such pollination, nearly 100 fruit and vegetable crops would be...
Some Plants Produce Caffeine to Draw Bees, Researchers Say
Researchers in Britain have discovered that certain plants actually produce caffeine to attract bees and help in pollination. Scientists at the University of Sussex said they thought the plants produce...
How DNA and a supercomputer can help sustain honey bee populations
To uncover what plants honey bees rely on, researchers are applying DNA metabarcoding to pollen analysis. A new method uses three loci to characterize pollen samples collected by honey bees. This multi-locus...
Managed bees spread and intensify diseases in wild bees
For various reasons, wild pollinators are in decline across many parts of the world. To combat this, managed honey bees and bumblebees are frequently shipped in to provide valuable pollination services...
Study: Health Risks Greater for Honeybees in Urban Hives
More and more urban dwellers are starting to keep honeybees as a hobby, but a new study finds it might not be so good for the bees. Researchers at North Carolina State University in Raleigh studied two...
Honey bees larvae absorb social culture of hive
WASHINGTON: Honey bees are tuned in to the social culture of the hive as larvae, becoming more or less aggressive depending on who raises them, researchers have found. University of Illinois entomology...
Study explores what we know about how neonicotinoids affect bees
An international group of pollination experts - including a University of Guelph professor - has published a second summary in as many years on the scientific evidence about the effects of neonicotinoid...
Bumblebees used for targeted pesticide deliveries
Chemical pesticides are generally a bad thing for the environment and pollinators like bees that our agriculture relies on. Now a company out of Vancouver, Canada, called Bee Vectoring Technology (BVT)...
Wimps or warriors? Honey bee larvae absorb the social culture of the hive, study finds
University of Illinois entomology professor Gene Robinson and his colleagues found that honey bee larvae raised in aggressive hives are more likely to be aggressive themselves when they emerge as adults....
Bumblebees deployed to spray crops with pesticides
THEY’RE not called worker bees for nothing. Bumblebees buzz from plant to plant collecting food, and plans are afoot to give them another task while they do it – carrying pesticides to where they are...
Bees found farming fungus for first time to feed larvae
Flowers are not enough, it seems. For the first time, bees have been discovered farming fungus to provide extra food for their larvae. Though farming is well known in many social insects, such as ants...
Wildflowers on farms—not just crops—can expose bees to neonicotinoids
Since bee colonies started declining at alarming rates over the past few decades, some scientists have identified a group of pesticides called neonicotinoids that are commonly used on crops as a potential...
Bees to scientists: 'We're more complicated than you think'
Chemical signaling among social insects, such as bees, ants and wasps, is more complex than previously thought, according to researchers at Penn State and Tel Aviv University, whose results refute the...
Scents and sense ability: Diesels fumes alter half the flower smells bees need
In polluted environments, diesel fumes may be reducing the availability of almost half the most common flower odors that bees use to find their food, research has found. The new findings suggest that toxic...
Diesel fumes alter half the flower smells bees need
image shows an electron scanning microscope image of a bee. Credit: Dr Robbie Girling In polluted environments, diesel fumes may be reducing the availability of almost half the most common flower odours...
Bees are just as addicted to caffeine as you are
Enlarge ImageIf you think I'm going to make a joke about bees getting their daily "buzz" here, you're sorely mistaken. Video screenshot by Danny Gallagher/CNET Some of us can't start our day unless we've...
Plants spike nectar with caffeine and give bees a buzz
The coffee shop may promise productivity and snacks, but only one thing gets you in the door: caffeine. It turns out that honeybees fall for the same trick – and when they do, they probably make less...
Buzzing bees can't resist caffeinated nectar
For many people, the best start to the day is a nice, fresh cup of joe. Now, researchers reporting in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on October 15 find that honey bees find caffeinated beverages—er,...
The Buzzing Dead: citizen-science project tracks zombified honeybees
Call them "The Buzzing Dead." Honeybees are being threatened by tiny flies that lead them to lurch and stagger around like zombies. The afflicted bees often make uncharacteristic night flights, sometimes...
ZomBee Watch Helps Scientists Track Honeybee Killer
While scientists have documented cases of tiny flies infesting honeybees, causing the bees to lurch and stagger around like zombies before they die, researchers don't know the scope of the problem. Now...
Bees use colour-coding to collect pollen and nectar
Credit: Lilla Frerichs/public domain A study published this week in the Royal Society journal Biology Letters finds that bees are able to learn which flowers to collect nectar and pollen from based on...
I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its component fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken-down computers. That is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark