A Philippine stingless bee helps boost coconut yields and empower women

Image of researcher walking among flowers and coconuts.

(Mongabay) Tetragonula biroi, a stingless bee native to the Philippines, is being cultivated on a farm to both produce honey and pollinate coconut trees. The farm has seen an increase of up to 50% in its coconut yields. Researchers say the presence of these pollinators, known as kiwot bees, can boost yields by up to 80%.

Scientists are ‘scent-training’ honey bees to boost pollination of certain crops by more than half

Image of honey bee boxes next to sunflower field.

(Daily Mail) Researchers in Argentina found that exposing bees to foods scented with synthetic sunflower odor altered their choices about which plants to visit later. Exposure to the scent of sunflowers created ‘bee memories’ that influenced the insects to seek out sunflowers and bring back more sunflower pollen to their hives. This increased visitation also boosted flower production by somewhere between 29 to 57 percent, depending on the sunflower hybrid grown.

Bee breeder loses everything in LNU Lightning Complex fires

Image of burned bee boxes.

(CBS13) It’s a hard reality to see what’s left of Caroline Yelle’s Bee farm in ashes. Five hundred of her hives in Vacaville and at another location in Napa Valley all burned. The flames from the LNU Lightning Complex Fires surrounded Yelle’s seven years of work. The fire also destroyed her mentor’s home and four decades of his own legacy that he left to her.

Kind is the first food brand to commit to buying ‘bee-friendly’ almonds

Image of almond blossoms with honey bee.

(Fast Company) The snack company Kind says it plans to source almonds only from “bee-friendly” farmland by 2025. Almond suppliers working with Kind are making two major changes. They’ve stopped using two types of pesticides – neonicotinoids and chlorpyrifos – that can kill bees. They will also convert between 3% to 5% of their orchards to a habitat that supports bees, butterflies and other pollinators.