New smartphone technology aimed at protecting bees during local almond bloom

Image of honey bees on almond blooms.

(The Bakersfield Californian) BeeWhere, a smartphone app introduced statewide in California last fall, lets beekeepers register their colonies’ location so that companies applying pesticides and fungicides know not to spray or fumigate nearby during daytime hours when honey bees tend to be outside their hives. According to California state law, chemicals deemed to be a threat to honey bees may not be applied within one mile of a bee colony.

Successful field trials of artificial pollination technology advance entry into huge almond market

Image of pollination devices behind tractors in orchard.

(Bee Culture) Israeli agritech startup Edete Precision Technologies for Agriculture has successfully completed field trials in almond orchards in Israel using its unique mechanical pollen harvesting and pollination system. The field trials are crucial for advancing the company’s planned entry into the huge almond market in California.

New collection showcases cutting-edge techniques in insect morphology and systematics

Image of bee collection.

(EurekAlert/Entomological Society of America) While the field of morphology is centuries old, the last two decades have brought incredible leaps forward through the emergence of new technologies and genetic research methods. And the impact of these advances has been revolutionary for the scientists working to untangle the vast biodiversity and evolutionary paths of the world of insects.

Bees, please: stop dying in your Martian simulator

Image of honey bees with a sensor.

(Wired) Before astronauts and scientists head to the moon or Mars, they’ll prepare by living and working in space-analog environments on volcanoes, deep inside caves, at the South Pole, and even underwater. But this training isn’t just for humans: in a recent experiment, the potential space cadets were 90,000 bees. The goal was to see whether bees could join a mission to the moon or Mars, where these prolific pollinators could help sustain gardens attached to a base. The initial results weren’t great.