Tagged: honeybees

Honeybee decline could sting NZ for $700m - News

John Kerr Aug 03, 2016

The pollinating power of the humble honeybee is worth millions of dollars to the New Zealand agricultural sector – but we are at risk of losing it. Bees are having a hard time of it these days; varroa mite, pesticides and a lack of plant diversity are all contributing to the decline of the bee populations crucial for pollinating crops. Read More

What it is like to be a bee: insects can teach us about the origins of consciousness - Guest Work

Guest Author Apr 19, 2016

By Colin Klein and Andrew Barron Do bees like the taste of nectar? Does the ant foraging for your crumbs feel better when she finds one? Are insects merely tiny robots? Or, in the phrase popularised by the philosopher Thomas Nagel, is there something it is like to be a bee? Until recently, most scientists and philosophers … Read More

Argentine ants harbour novel virus - News

Erica Mather Sep 15, 2015

A New Zealand study confirms that Argentine ants are hosts of a virus that is associated with honeybee deaths.  The ants were discovered to also carry a previously undescribed virus, one that could trigger their own demise. Argentine ants (Linepthema humile) are considered one of the six most invasive and damaging ant species in the world.  Large colonies can … Read More

Researchers worldwide team up to tackle the plight of honeybees - News

Erica Mather Aug 25, 2015

Although many of us first think of honeybees as wondrous honey-makers, their most essential role is the pollination of crops. Sadly, honeybees worldwide are under serious threat. International researchers are employing the technology of micro-sensors to find out exactly why. As a result of their evolutionary success and their significance in human food production, the European honeybee (Apis mellifera) is … Read More

Parasites hijack flowers – Chief pollinators at risk - News

Erica Mather Aug 06, 2015

The spread of bee parasites has been found to be mediated by flowers, according to new research from the UK.  Infected bees deposit parasites onto flowers as they forage.  The parasites are then dispersed by other bees that visit the same flowers, and even spread between bee species.  These results reveal flowers to be ‘hotspots’ of pathogen dispersal, aiding the … Read More

Lethal doses and Bees - Genomics Aotearoa

Peter Dearden Jul 30, 2013

Peter K. Dearden More bad news for bees this week. Honeybees around the world are struggling in the face of disease and insecticide threats. In New Zealand we have Varroa mite, that increases costs for beekeepers, destroys unmanaged beehives and vectors viruses, making them more virulent. Overseas, Colony Collapse Disorder and pesticide-threats are adding to the woes Varroa brings, meaning … Read More