Jan 222017
 
How the world's smallest birds survive the winter

As the smallest birds on Earth, hummingbirds may seem frail—so it’s not surprising Donovan Nixon asked Weird Animal Question of the Week how they cope with winter. Turns out these airborne jewels are as tough as diamonds. In cold weather, hummingbird bodies enter into an “energy-conservation mode called torpor,” according to Oregon State ecologist Adam […]

Mar 312016
 
Bees and other pollinators are in dire need of help

Around the world, the animals that pollinate our food crops —over 20,000 species of bees, butterflies, bats and many others —are the subject of growing attention. An increasing number of pollinator species are thought to be in decline, threatened by a variety of mostly human pressures, and their struggles could pose significant risksfor global food […]

Dec 202015
 
Wildlife decline threatens UK's biodiversity, study finds

A decline in wildlife is threatening core functions of the ecosystem that are vital for human wellbeing, researchers behind an unprecedented study of biodiversity in the UK have warned. Climate change and habitat loss are leading to a reduction in biodiversity, with species that act as pollinators and natural pest controls most at risk, the […]

Oct 102013
 
The Case of the Vanishing Honeybees | Book Review

Every year, somewhere between 30 and 50 percent of all worker honeybees disappear from their hives, never to be seen again, leaving their developing young to die and their queens untended. This disturbing phenomenon, known as Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), was first identified in the United States, but it is happening all around the world. […]

May 222013
 
U.S. loses nearly a third of its honey bees this season

Nearly a third of managed honeybee colonies in America died out or disappeared over the winter, an annual survey found on Wednesday. The decline—which was far worse than the winter before—threatens the survival of some bee colonies. The heavy losses of pollinators also threatens the country’s food supply, researchers said. The US Department of Agriculture […]

May 112013
 
Europe bans pesticides linked to bee collapse

The EU has banned three neonicotinoid pesticides (imidacloprid, clothianidin and thiamethoxam) linked to the decline of bees for two years. The ban will apply to all flowering crops, such as corn, rape seed, and sunflowers. The move follows a flood of recent studies, some high-profile, that have linked neonicotinoid pesticides, which employ nicotine-like chemicals, to […]

Apr 132013
 
Domesticated bees do not replace declining wild insects as agricultural pollinators

Sprinkled with pollen, buzzing bees fly from one blossom to another, collecting sweet nectar from brilliantly colored flowers. Bees tend to symbolize the pollination process, but there are many wild insects that carry out the same function. Unfortunately, wild insect populations are in decline, and, according to a recent study, adding more honey bees may […]

Apr 122013
 
Ban pesticides linked to bee deaths, say MPs

The UK government should suspend the use of a number of pesticides linked to the deaths of bees, a committee of MPs has said. Members of the Commons Environmental Audit Committee are calling for a moratorium on the use of sprays containing neonicotinoids. Britain has refused to back an EU ban on these chemicals saying […]