Bees Rigged with RFID Trackers Show Consequences Of Parasites on Pollen Production

Clapway   By Chris   July 15, 2015

Whether they like it or not, bees are the center of attention in the world of scientific studies. This be may be due in part to fact that so many earthly ecosystems depend on their pollination to thrive, or because bee behavior is simply fascinating. Either way, this focus has led researchers to place trackers on honeybees in hives. The results reveal that some of these bees have actually completely lost their ability to pollinate, leading experts to panic about the future of bees and the ecosystems which depend so heavily on them.


The overworked honeybees just won’t get to work, it seems. According to the research executed by Dr. Lori Lach of James Cook University, those bees infected with the parasite Nosema Apis sharply decrease their pollination. This has devastating effects if the parasites become or have become widespread.

According to Dr. Lach’s research, “our finding that bees inoculated with a low dose of N. ap is carried less pollen on their body than non-inoculated bees is...

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A Warming World May Spell Bad News for Honey Bees

The following is brought to us by ABJ Extra    November 26, 2014

Researchers have found that the spread of an exotic honey bee parasite, Nosema ceranae, -now found worldwide - is linked not only to its superior competitive ability, but also to climate, according to a new study published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

The team of researchers, including Myrsini Natsopoulou from the Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, who co-led the research alongside Dr. Dino McMahon from Queen's University Belfast, believes that the parasite could become more prevalent in the UK in the future and their findings demonstrate the importance of both parasite competition and climate change in the spread of this emerging disease.

Myrsini Natsopoulou said: "Our results reveal not only that the exotic parasite is a better competitor than its original close relative, but that its widespread distribution and patterns of prevalence in nature depend on climatic conditions too".

The research compared pathogen growth in honey bees that were infected with both the exotic parasite, Nosema ceranae and its original native relative, Nosema apis.

Experiments showed that, while both parasites inhibit each other's growth, the exotic Nosema ceranae has a much greater negative impact on the native Nosema apis than vice versa. By integrating the effects of competition and climate into a simple mathematical model, the researchers were better able to predict the relative occurrence of both parasite species in nature:Nosema ceranae is common in Southern Europe but rare in Northern Europe.

Coauthor of the study, Prof. Robert Paxton of Queen's University Belfast, added: "This emerging parasite is more susceptible to cold than its original close relative, possibly reflecting its presumed origin in east Asia. In the face of rising global temperatures, our findings suggest that it will increase in prevalence and potentially lead to increased honey bee colony losses in Britain."

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