Walking Among Giants in Northwest Thailand


This post is the first in the “Travel Bug” series by Laura Kraft, a recent graduate from the University of Georgia, who will be chronicling her travels in Asia from an entomological perspective. “This is my office,” Dr. Robinson says jokingly, slinging his backpack onto his back and mounting his bike with a gesture of […]

New Bee Species Bores into Sandstone


When Michael Orr, a graduate student at Utah State University, observed what appeared to be bee nests in sandstone at the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Park in Utah, he decided to investigate by examining bee specimens at the USDA’s National Pollinating Insects Collection. Rummaging through drawer after drawer, he finally found what he’d been seeking: specimens […]

Study Shows Leaf Fertilizers to Be Toxic to Stingless Bees


By Andrew Porterfield There’s been a lot of focus and scientific study on the population reductions of honey bees and other pollinators. Some possible causes that have been cited are: – Solar storms – Viruses – Diesel Fumes – Bacterial pathogens – Selenium – A fungus – Fungicides – Insecticides, especially those in the class […]

Radio Tagging Bumble Bees to Figure Out What the Buzz Is All About


By Jeremy Hemberger Bees are on a lot of folk’s minds these days, and for good reason. They provide pollination services to over 70% of the crops worldwide, helping to get us the delicious and nutritious foods that we love, like apples, cucumbers, cherries, berries, and more. Despite their importance across the planet, they’ve taken […]

An Opportunity to Study Bees and Pollination in Costa Rica


By Gerrit van de Klashorst The importance of bees and other pollinators for natural and agricultural ecosystems has been well documented. But during the past decades, pollinators have been in decline in North America and Europe. This decline is attributed to a number of factors, including pesticides, habitat loss caused by changing land use, and […]

Kiley Friedrich Talks About Plant Diversity and Bee Communities


In this video, which was made by entomology graduate students Jeremy Hemberger and Michael Falk during Entomology 2015 in Minneapolis, Kiley Friedrich (University of Wisconsin-Madison) talks about her poster on how plant community diversity impacts wild and native bee communities.

Four New Bee Species Discovered in Australia


Four new native bee species have been recognized as part of the largest Australian nature discovery project, called “Bush Blitz.” The South Australian bee specialists used molecular and morphological evidence to prove them as new. Three of the species had narrow heads and long mouth parts — adaptations to foraging on flowers of emu-bushes, which […]

Study Finds Very Few Wild Bee Species Pollinate Major Crops


A major international study finds that surprisingly few bee species are responsible for pollinating the world’s crops. The paper, published in Nature Communications, suggests that only two percent of wild bee species pollinate 80 percent of bee-pollinated crops worldwide. The study is one of the largest on bee pollination to date. While agricultural development and […]

Entomovectoring Uses Bees to Fight Fungus with Fungus


A disease called brown rot, which is caused by a fungus, costs the Australian cherry industry $150 million per year. To combat the disease, University of Adelaide researchers are trying a method called “entomovectoring,” which uses bees to deliver spores of a parasitic fungus to prevent the fungus that causes the brown rot from colonizing […]

Eavesdropping Bees Encouraged by “Whispers,” Deterred by “Shouts”


If 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 food to your nestmates without revealing it to competitors? Some animals are thought to deter eavesdroppers by making their signals less conspicuous to outsiders — they’ve evolved “whispers” […]