How quickly do flower strips in cities help the local bees?

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  • March 2, 2020
  • Insects rely on a mix of floral resources for survival. Populations of bees, butterflies, and flies are currently rapidly decreasing due to the loss of flower-rich meadows. In order to deal with the widespread loss of fauna, the European Union supports “greening” measures, for example, the creation of flower strips. A group of scientists from the University […]

    19th-century bee cells in a Panamanian cathedral shed light on human impact on ecosystems

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  • January 27, 2020
  • About 120 clusters of 19th-century orchid bee nests were found during restoration work on the altarpiece of Basilica Cathedral in Casco Viejo (Panamá). Having conducted the first pollen analysis for these extremely secretive insects, the researchers identified the presence of 48 plant species, representing 23 families.

    Non-native pest-controlling wasp identified in Canada prior to formal approval

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  • February 25, 2019
  • Thought to be Canada’s most promising potential defense against the brown marmorated stink bug – a globally spreading agricultural pest native to Asia – the samurai wasp (another species from Asia and natural parasitoid of the former) has been considered for future release in the country in recent years. However, prior to any formal decision […]

    Bee diversity and richness decline as anthropogenic activity increases, confirm scientists

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  • November 1, 2018
  • The researchers compared wild bee communities in the tropical dry forest of Mexico living in three habitat conditions: preserved vegetation, agricultural sites and urbanised areas Changes in land use negatively affect bee species richness and diversity, and cause major shifts in species composition, reports a recent study of native wild bees, conducted at the Sierra de […]

    Towards untangling the ‘antennal grabbing’ phenomenon in mating cuckoo bees

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  • August 27, 2018
  • Scientists report this behavior for the first time in the genus Nomada, following both lab and field observations in Germany One can seldom spot a cuckoo bee, whose peculiar kleptoparasitic behaviour includes laying eggs in the nests of a certain host bee species, let alone a couple mating. Nevertheless, German scientists – Dr. Matthias Schindler, University […]

    Journal of Hymenoptera Research links Crocodile Dundee, Toblerone, Game of Thrones & Alien

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  • June 26, 2018
  • A myriad of species and genera new to science, including economically important wasps drawing immediate attention because of their amusing names and remarkable physical characters, in addition to work set to lay the foundations for future taxonomic and conservation research, together comprise the latest 64th issue of Journal of Hymenoptera Research (JHR). Two genera (Qrocodiledundee and Tobleronius) named after […]

    The ‘Star dust’ wasp is a new extinct species named after David Bowie’s alter ego

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  • June 22, 2017
  • During her study on fossil insects of the order Hymenoptera at China’s Capitol Normal University, student Longfeng Li visited the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, Washington, carrying two unidentified wasp specimens that were exceptionally well-preserved in Burmese amber. This type of fossilized tree resin is known for the quality of the fossil specimens which […]

    Bee species with little known nesting-behavior observed to use plastic instead of leaves

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  • March 1, 2017
  • Little is known about the nesting activities of some lineages of megachiline bees. Dr. Sarah Gess, affiliated with both Albany Museum and Rhodes University, South Africa, and Peter Roosenschoon, Conservation Officer at the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve, United Arab Emirates, made use of their earlier observations gathered during a survey on flower visitation in the […]

    Trapped in a nuclear weapon bunker wood ants survive for years in Poland

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  • August 30, 2016
  • Having built their nest over the vertical ventilation pipe of an old nuclear weapon bunker in Poland, every year a large number of wood ants fall down the pipe to never return back to their colony. Curiously, although trapped in extremely severe conditions underground, the ants have already upped their numbers to these of big, […]