A growing consensus deems Varroa mite infestation to be the leading factor in the struggles of honey bees in managed hives around the world. A new profile in the open-access Journal of Integrated Pest Management details the biology and life cycle of the Varroa destructor mite and the IPM approach to control the devastating ectoparasites.
Wild pollinators have the potential to play a bigger part in pollinating specialty crops, according to a new study.
Engineers may recognize the internal muscle structure of a honey bee abdomen for its resemblance to a Stewart platform, a mechanical device that enables six degrees of freedom in movement. Researchers who have found its natural equivalent in bees say the discovery is already informing their work in designing articulating nose cones for rockets.
If you've ever used an electronic pass in your car to pay a highway toll, then you know the basics of radio frequency identification (RFID) tracking. RFID tags are now available in sizes allowing for applications in entomological research. Here's how one scientist is using RFID in his research on honey bees.
Nonchemical Varroa-management methods are more common among small-scale beekeepers, but chemical varroacides show wide use among all types.
Honey bees are in high demand for pollinating crops, and hives are often trucked thousands of miles a year to serve different crops in different regions and seasons. But researchers say honey bees show signs of stress from all that travel.
Yellowjackets are nuisance predators of honey bees, preying on them and pillaging their honey. But bees fight back, and healthy hives are rarely at risk. Learn more about yellowjackets, their interactions with bees, and what sets yellowjackets apart from hornets and other fellow wasps.
Some researchers willing to question conventional wisdom, some crafty experimentation, and some high-tech microscopic imagery all add up to a discovery about the Varroa destructor mite that upends years of understanding about how it parasitizes honey bees.
When pesticides show up in the pollen that honey bees collect, can the source plant be pinpointed? A new study is the first to successfully combine chemical analysis of pollen and the keen eye of a palynologist—an expert in identifying pollen microscopically—to track pesticide in bee-collected pollen to a source plant genus.
Research in Pennsylvania shows that overall colony weight and the number of worker bees to be the leading factors in determining overwintering survival of honey bee (Apis mellifera) colonies. For colonies in which the combined weight of adult bees, brood, and food stores exceeded 30 kilograms, overwinter survival rates were about 94 percent.
A new collection of reports in Environmental Entomology highlights the need for pesticide risk assessments that account for the differing qualities and behaviors between honey bees and bumble bees, solitary bees, and stingless bees.
Honey bees are incapable of buzz pollination, but they can (and do) perform pollination duties in highbush blueberry. A new study shows that, while honey bees rarely collect blueberry pollen in the pollen baskets on their hind legs, they frequently contact it with other body parts and transfer it to other flowers.
When honey bees produce more propolis, a waxy resin they use for sealing up their hives, overall health benefits to the colony ensue. A new study tests a few simple methods beekeepers can use to encourage more propolis production in their hives.
Honey bees detect and remove brood afflicted with parasites or pathogens. A new study shows that part of this "hygienic behavior" relies on chemical signals emitted by unhealthy brood, and brood coming from colonies bred to be more hygienic are more effective in signaling for their own removal.
A new study that explores the effect of smoke on honey bee (Apis mellifera) behavior finds that it reduces the instance of bees releasing a venom droplet in their signaling of danger to other bees, which researchers speculate may thereby reduce the amount of alarm pheromone released.
In the course of a study on mosquito movement, researchers discovered that local colonies of honey bees had foraged on a nontoxic sugar bait meant for the mosquitoes. The bait was dyed red to track mosquitoes that fed on it, but the dye also showed up in much of the bees' honey.
A review of existing research on floral resource competition between managed honey bees and wild bees shows gaps in our knowledge about such interactions and calls for further research to better inform decisions on honey bee management and pollinator protection.