Scientific journals digest for what’s new in honeybee biology: what happens with honey bee gut during overwintering in Canada; understanding Foul Brood Disease and “crud brood”; and appreciating diversity in scientific community.
New study “A Pediococcus strain to rescue honeybees by decreasing Nosema ceranae- and pesticide-induced adverse effects” by Peghaire et al. found that feeding live Pediococcus bacteria can rescue honeybees from N. ceranae– and pesticide adverse effects. Mortality was down from 41% to 15% and Nosema spores per bee decreased by 80%. Gene expression analysis indicates that the bacteria can achieve this benefit by stimulating the honeybee immune and detoxication systems.
One of the most creative applications for probiotic study was American Foulbrood (AFB). In my latest article, I discuss two studies that tried to overcome AFB with probiotics and arrived at different conclusions. Comparing the two gives the reader a chance to compare scope of scientific inquiry and different methods of probiotic use.
At Apimondia this year, 40% of honey entries for the honey competition were disqualified for adulteration and contamination. What does this say about the health of the world’s managed pollinators? What does this mean for the future of honey? Is “clean” honey possible anymore?
“Bees are actually omnivores, and their meat is microbes. This finding may open a new window on why bees are in trouble: Anything that disrupts the microbial community in a bee’s food, whether it is high heat linked to climate change, fungicides or another stressor, could be causing developing bees to starve.”