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Old 09-17-2016, 08:10 AM   #91
captainhook455
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I once had a spider lay her eggs in one of my rose flowers. She tied the flower up with her eggs inside. The amazing thing was the other flowers died in winters chill, but this one stayed red and whole. February came and was time to cut the bushes to the ground. I left the one sprig uncut. Spring came. The little buggers hatched. They were red like the rose, soon to be green like dear old mom. After a few days I noticed a couple of yellow jackets were eating my babies. I dispatched them with fly spray. The time came for the brood to leave the nest and the rose flower finally died. None said goodbye or thanks for protecting them. I did notice that I didn't have to spray for white flies or Japanese beatles that summer. I think that was enough thanks for anyone.

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Old 09-18-2016, 01:42 PM   #92
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Friendly neighborhood bees vs. asshole wasps...

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Old 09-18-2016, 02:07 PM   #93
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Old 02-21-2017, 06:07 PM   #94
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Bees are faster than pigeons.
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Old 02-22-2017, 04:46 PM   #95
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If Attenborough is describing a horrific lifecycle, 90% chance he's describing a wasp.
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Old 02-25-2017, 03:10 AM   #96
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Quote:
A bumblebee is now on the endangered species list for the first time in a "race against extinction," the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced Tuesday. The agency placed the rusty patched bumblebee on the list because of a dramatic population decline over the past 20 years. Since the late 1990s, the population of the species has plummeted 87%. Named because of the rust-colored marks on its back, the bee was once common and abundant across 28 states from Connecticut to South Dakota. Today, the bee is only found in small, scattered populations in 13 states...

It's not just the rusty patched bumblebee that is struggling in the U.S. Other species have experienced dramatic declines in recent decades. The reduction is believed to be caused by a combination of habitat loss, disease, pesticide use, climate change and an extremely small population size...

This is the first bee of any type in the continental U.S. to be placed on the list. In September, the Obama administration designated seven species of bees in Hawaii as endangered.

You've probably heard the bad news by now that bees were recently added to the endangered species list for the first time. But if you're part of the 60 percent of people who share stories without actually reading them, you might have missed an important detail: namely, that the newly endangered bees are a handful of relatively obscure species who live only in Hawaii.
The bees you're more familiar with — the ones that buzz around your yard dipping into flowers, making honey, pollinating crops and generally keeping the world's food supply from collapsing? Those bees are doing just fine, according to data released by the USDA this year...

The number of commercial bee colonies is still significantly higher than it was in 2006, when colony collapse disorder — the mass die-offs that began afflicting U.S. honeybee colonies — was first documented...
“Honey bees are not about to go extinct,” Kim Kaplan, a researcher with the USDA, said in an email. “It is the beekeepers who are in danger, facing unsustainable economic losses."
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Old 02-25-2017, 09:01 AM   #97
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Pertinent quote from the comments section of the WaPo article:

Quote:
It's like saying thousands of people are dying, but it's fine, in 9 months they can make more. Bees are indicators of a healthy environment and even if commercial bee keepers can quickly replace dead honey bees it still means something is terribly wrong.
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Old 02-25-2017, 09:28 AM   #98
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I have activity in both hives but I think I took a numbers hit.
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Old 02-25-2017, 02:14 PM   #99
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It's like saying thousands of people are dying, but it's fine, in 9 months they can make more. Bees are indicators of a healthy environment and even if commercial bee keepers can quickly replace dead honey bees it still means something is terribly wrong.
That's not what I got from the article. My take is the bumblebee is the is first to make the endangered list, but a lot of lesser know bees are in deep shit too.
The honeybee is doing OK only because of intense intervention by man.

I've read a bunch of articles saying the problem's real cause is X or Y or Z. Likely it's a combination of a bunch of things, none of which anyone cares to tackle other than on a local small scale.
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Old 02-25-2017, 04:44 PM   #100
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I've read enough to know that we're in trouble, but not enough to be confident about all of the science (meaning trends and population issues; the neonicotinoids are another matter). However - small local scale can make a difference, even turn the tide. I'm going to set up hives this spring.

I've watched the bat population on our property wax and wane over 10 years - there isn't much I can do to help them other than do no harm. For the bees, maybe a little positive intervention is possible.
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Old 02-26-2017, 08:31 PM   #101
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They're smart too!

Bumblebees are nimble learners.

Quote:
Perry and his colleagues wrote Thursday in the journal Science that, despite bees' miniature brains, they can solve new problems quickly just by observing a demonstration. This suggests that bees, which are important crop pollinators, could in time adapt to new food sources if their environment changed.

As we have reported on The Salt before, bee populations around the world have declined in recent years. Scientists think a changing environment is at least partly responsible.

Perry and colleagues built a platform with a porous ball sitting at the center of it. If a bee went up to the ball, it would find that it could access a reward, sugar water.

One by one, bumblebees walked onto the platform, explored a bit, and then slurped up the sugar water in the middle.

"Essentially, the first experiment was: Can bees learn to roll a ball?" says Perry.

Then, the researchers moved the ball to the edge of the platform.

"The bees came out, looked at the center, didn't have reward. They went to the ball, didn't have reward. They had to figure out that they needed to move the ball from the edge to the center, and then they'd get reward," says Perry.

The ball was a token, like the dollar bill you'd put in a vending machine. The sugar water was like a can of soda that could only be unlocked using the token.

If a bee couldn't figure out how to get the reward, a researcher would demonstrate using a puppet — a plastic bee on the end of a stick — to scoot the ball from the edge of the platform to the center.

"Bees that saw this demonstration learned very quickly how to solve the task. They started rolling the ball into the center; they got better over time," says Perry.
They learned from watching a puppet bee. Daaaang.

And some busybee-scientists are probing the bee brains.

Quote:
The difficulty to simultaneously record neural activity and behavior presents a considerable limitation for studying mechanisms of insect learning and memory. The challenge is finding a model suitable for the use of behavioral paradigms under the restrained conditions necessary for neural recording. In honeybees, Pavlovian conditioning relying on the proboscis extension reflex (PER) has been used with great success to study different aspects of insect cognition. However, it is desirable to combine the advantages of the PER with a more robust model that allows simultaneous electrical or optical recording of neural activity. Here, we briefly discuss the potential use of bumblebees as models for the study of learning and memory under restrained conditions. We base our arguments on the well-known cognitive abilities of bumblebees, their social organization and phylogenetic proximity to honeybees, our recent success using Pavlovian conditioning to study learning in two bumblebee species, and on the recently demonstrated robustness of bumblebees under conditions suitable for electrophysiological recording.
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Old 02-26-2017, 09:47 PM   #102
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I was using a small underpowered wood chipper that had an engine like a lawn mower with the fan on top pulling air in and down through the engine for cooling. Anyway, I'm making a lot of noise and chips are flying but the huge Bumble bee is nosing around at their usual pace of how the hell do they stay up. Sure enough he gets sucked into the engine and I figure he's a gonner.
It must have been at least five minutes before the engine stalled again and pretty quick he come flying out, flew in a couple circles then moseyed off.
I thought damn, he is one tough bastard, must be a Seal, or Green Beret, of the Bumblebees.
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Old 02-27-2017, 08:04 AM   #103
xoxoxoBruce
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Beeeeeeeeeeeees
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:20 AM   #104
xoxoxoBruce
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Cheerios ran a ad campaign offering wild flower seeds for the claimed purpose of helping save the Honeybees. We know it was a self serving ad campaign but at least it was something cool, instead of some plastic shit which would break the heart of every kid who mailed in and waited six to eight weeks.

They are promising to add 3300 acres of wild flowers to their oat farms, and set a goal of giving away 100,000,000 wild flower seeds. I don't know how many seeds in a packet so it's hard to figure how many people requested seeds.
They stopped the promotion after giving away 1.5 Billion seeds. I hope half of them get planted, and 20% of those grow.
Thanks, Cheerios.
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Old 03-17-2017, 06:51 AM   #105
Griff
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That kind of advertising should be rewarded.
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