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Evolutionary History of Honeybees Revealed by Genomics

Posted On: August 26, 2014

 New findings show a surprisingly high level of genetic diversity in honeybees, and indicate that the species most probably originates from Asia, and not from Africa as previously thought. (Credit Alex Hayward) In a study published in Nature Genetics, researchers from Uppsala University present the first global analysis of genome variation in honeybees. The findings Continue Reading »


Of Bees, Mites, and Viruses

Posted On: August 21, 2014

Virus infections after arrival of a new parasitic mite in New Zealand honeybee colonies Honeybee colonies are dying at alarming rates worldwide. A variety of factors have been proposed to explain their decline, but the exact cause—and how bees can be saved—remains unclear. An article published on August 21st in PLOS Pathogens examines the viral landscape in Continue Reading »


Worker bees ‘Know’ When to Invest in Their Reproductive Future

Posted On: August 21, 2014

Reproductive cycle triggered when colonies reach 4,000 members    Honeybees build a new comb on a wooden frame of a beehive. The piece of comb on the right shows the transition from worker comb (small inner cells) to drone comb (large outer cells). Credit: Madeleine M. Ostwald When a colony of honeybees grows to about Continue Reading »


USDA Extends Deadline for the Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish Program

Posted On: July 31, 2014

WASHINGTON, July 31, 2014 — U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) Administrator Juan M. Garcia announced today that the enrollment deadline for the 2012 and 2013 Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees and Farm-Raised Fish Program (ELAP) has been extended to Aug. 15, 2014. Originally, program sign-up was scheduled to end Aug. 1. Continue Reading »


Bees Able to Spot Which Flowers Offer Best Rewards Before Landing

Posted On: July 31, 2014

Bumblebees are able to connect differences in pollen quality with floral features, like petal colour, and so land only on the flowers that offer the best rewards, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Exeter. Researchers have discovered that bumble bees are able to connect differences in pollen quality with floral Continue Reading »


How Honey Bees Stay Cool

Posted On: July 24, 2014

MEDFORD/SOMERVILLE, Mass. – Honey bees, especially the young, are highly sensitive to temperature and to protect developing bees, adults work together to maintain temperatures within a narrow range. Recently published research led by Philip T. Starks, a biologist at Tufts University’s School of Arts and Sciences, is the first to show that worker bees dissipate Continue Reading »


Radio Frequency ID Tags on Honey Bees Reveal Hive Dynamics

Posted On: July 23, 2014

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Scientists attached radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags to hundreds of individual honey bees and tracked them for several weeks. The effort yielded two discoveries: Some foraging bees are much busier than others; and if those busy bees disappear, others will take their place. The findings are reported in the journal Animal Behaviour. Tagging the bees revealed Continue Reading »


Scientists Track Gene Activity When Honey Bees Do and Don’t Eat Honey

Posted On: July 18, 2014

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Many beekeepers feed their honey bees sucrose or high-fructose corn syrup when times are lean inside the hive. This practice has come under scrutiny, however, in response to colony collapse disorder, the massive — and as yet not fully explained — annual die-off of honey bees in the U.S. and Europe. Some Continue Reading »


Why ‘Whispers’ Among Bees Sometimes Evolve Into ‘Shouts’

Posted On: July 8, 2014

Let’s say you’re a bee and you’ve spotted a new and particularly lucrative source of nectar and pollen. What’s the best way to communicate the location of this prize cache of food to the rest of your nestmates without revealing it to competitors, or “eavesdropping” spies, outside of the colony? Many animals are thought to Continue Reading »


Scientists Link Honey Bees’ Changing Roles Throughout Their Lives to Brain Chemistry

Posted On: May 8, 2014

Scientists have been linking an increasing range of behaviors and inclinations from monogamy to addiction to animals’, including humans’, underlying biology. To that growing list, they’re adding division of labor — at least in Africanized bees. A report published in ACS’ Journal of Proteome Research presents new data that link the amounts of certain neuropeptides in these Continue Reading »


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