(UConn) Why would a psychologist study honey bees? “My research focuses on collective intelligence – how a group can work together successfully without guidance from a leader. Honeybees are a group that work together, they communicate. But the difference is that honeybees do it very well, and humans are not always as successful while working together in groups.”
(Colossal) When Ava Roth adds the last stitch grasping horsehair or porcupine quills to her embroidered artworks, she passes the fibrous material on to her black-and-yellow counterparts. The Toronto-based artist collaborates with bees to encase her mixed-media pieces in waxy honeycomb. What emerges are organic artworks that consider interspecies interactions and the beauty that such meetings can garner.
(ABC News) Taxonomists are the “map makers of nature”, tasked with naming new plant and animal species, but it is a dying art. For specialties like Australian bees there are just four taxonomists left, and no one to pass on their knowledge and skills to.
(The Art Newspaper) The sculpture is able to absorb up to 15% of her own weight in nitrogen dioxide molecules. When it rains, the absorbed toxins are washed away as a harmless liquid, enabling the continuous ingestion of pollution from the surrounding air. Nitrogen dioxide can mask the scent of flowers, thus preventing bees from finding their food.
(Cosmos) An interview with Australian entomologist Bryan Lessard – aka “Bry the fly guy” – about his interest in all things buggy, insects’ importance to the way the nature works, and their growing importance as part of the solution to feeding the world. Some cultures, of course, have always consumed them.
(Athens Banner-Herald) Scientists have long known two facts about the world’s bee population: pollinating bees are vital contributors to healthy crops and a thriving ecosystem, and many bee species are under threat of extinction from pollution, disease and other factors. The University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine has joined the fight to save the bees by building a set of hives on campus. The new program will give residents and senior veterinary students in clinical training experience caring for these insects.
(ScienceNews) Endangered is a cooperative game for one to five players. Each person takes on a role — zoologist, philanthropist, lobbyist, environmental lawyer or TV wildlife show host — and players work together to convince at least four ambassadors to save a species. If you get too few “yes” votes, or let habitat destruction spread too much, or if your animal population dies out, everyone loses. The game starts with a set of animals in their habitat, either tigers or sea otters, depending on which of the game’s two story lines you play. A third story line, giant pandas, is available in an expansion pack, and a Kickstarter that began this month is raising funds for additional animal packs.
(Marketplace) At 15 years old, Mikaila Ulmer is a student, bee ambassador, social entrepreneur and author. The origins of her company, Me & the Bees Lemonade, which donates a portion of sales to bee conservation, dates back to a lemonade stand Mikaila started in kindergarten for a children’s business competition in Austin, Texas. After 10 years in business and an appearance on the television show “Shark Tank,” Mikaila’s company is a national brand. Her flaxseed lemonade is sold in 1,500 stores in more than 40 states.