VTBees Update From the Field
July 30, 2019
Throughout the spring and summer, Vermont Center for Ecostudies biologists and citizen scientists alike have been scouring fields, roadsides, gardens, and all places flowers are found surveying bees for the Vermont Wild Bee Survey (VTBees). As different flowers come into bloom, different specialist bees emerge to nectar on a single species or group of flowers. From pickerelweed to loosestrife, sunflower to goldenrod, chasing down these flowers and the bees that associate with them has led to some exciting apine discoveries
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Natural habitats, bee diversity key to better apple production
January 17, 2019
A Cornell-led study, published Jan. 18 in the journal Science, shows that apple orchards surrounded by agricultural lands are visited by a less diverse collection of bee species than orchards surrounded by natural habitats. In turn, apple production suffers when fewer, more closely-related species of bees pollinate an orchard. Production improves in orchards surrounded by natural habitats, which then draw a broader selection of species to apple blossoms.
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Study Reveals Striking Decline of Vermont’s Bumble Bees
December 15, 2018
A new study examining 100 years of bumble bee records reveals that almost half of Vermont’s species, which are vital pollinators, have either vanished or are in serious decline. After conducting the state’s most extensive search for bumble bees, and combing through historical records from museum collections, the team has concluded that four of Vermont’s 17 bumble bee species appear to have gone extinct. The study, led by researchers from the Vermont Center for Ecostudies (VCE) and the University of Vermont (UVM), was published in the Journal of Insect Conservation.
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The Secret to Better Berries? Wild Bees
November 28, 2018
Want bigger, faster-growing blueberries? New research shows wild bees are an essential secret ingredient in larger and better blueberry yields – producing plumper, faster-ripening berries. The study, led by University of Vermont scientists, is the first to successfully reveal that wild bees improve not only blueberry quantities, but also size and other quality factors. It finds that wild bees provide major benefits for berry farmers, including: greater berry size (12%), quantity (12%), size consistency (11%), and earlier harvests – by two and a half days.
Read more on the UVM Blog »