Bees are impressive creatures, powering entire ecosystems via pollination and making sweet honey at the same time, one of the most incredible substances in nature.

It turns out the little striped insects are also quite clever. A new study suggests that, despite having tiny brains, bees understand the mathematical concepts of addition and subtraction.    To test the numeracy of the arthropods, researchers set up unique Y-shaped math mazes for the bees to navigate, according to Nicola Davis at the The Guardian. … More Bees are impressive creatures, powering entire ecosystems via pollination and making sweet honey at the same time, one of the most incredible substances in nature.

Bees prefer warm violets in cool forests, scientists discover

Research by scientists at Saint Louis University’s Bernhardt/Meier Laboratory engaged in a study of Missouri bees and wildflowers has been published in the online Journal of Pollination Ecology. Peter Bernhardt, Ph.D., a professor of biology at SLU and research associate at the Missouri Botanical Garden and the Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust in Sydney, New … More Bees prefer warm violets in cool forests, scientists discover

Bee decline threatens US crop production

First US wild bee map reveals 139 ‘trouble zone’ counties The first-ever study to map U.S. wild bees suggests they are disappearing in the country’s most important farmlands — from California’s Central Valley to the Midwest’s corn belt and the Mississippi River valley. A new study of wild bees identifies 139 counties in key agricultural … More Bee decline threatens US crop production

How honey bee gut bacteria help to digest their pollen-rich diet

he honey bee gut is colonized by specialized bacteria that help digest components of the floral pollen diet and produce molecules that likely promote bee health. In a study publishing 12 December in the open access journal PLOS Biology, a group of researchers led by Philipp Engel at the University of Lausanne and ETH Zürich, Switzerland, … More How honey bee gut bacteria help to digest their pollen-rich diet

Can Honeybees Monitor Pollution?

The tiny pollinators are useful sentinels of what’s going on in an ecosystem, and might just be environmentalists’ best asset. An apiarist tends to beehives at Hastings Urban Farm in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. (Courtesy M. Amini) By Rachel Kaufman It’s a sunny day, and Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside neighborhood is buzzing. Commuters are commuting, delivery trucks are delivering, … More Can Honeybees Monitor Pollution?

Laws of attraction: Pollinators use multiple cues to identify flowers across continents

Source: National Centre for Biological SciencesSummary:Although at least 75 percent of our crop species depend on animal pollinators, little is known about their flower preferences. As global insect populations decline, it is of utmost importance for us to understand what factors attract wild pollinators to flowers, and how these preferences differ in the face of … More Laws of attraction: Pollinators use multiple cues to identify flowers across continents

Nation’s Beekeepers Lost 33 Percent of Bees in 2016-17

The University of Maryland/Bee Informed Partnership informs us that Beekeepers across the United States lost 33 percent of their honey bee colonies during the year spanning April 2016 to April 2017, according to the latest preliminary results of an annual nationwide survey. Rates of both winter loss and summer loss — and consequently, total annual … More Nation’s Beekeepers Lost 33 Percent of Bees in 2016-17