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.
“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.”
Nosema infection threatens millions of honeybee colonies worldwide. Direct-Fed Microbials (DFM), also called probiotics, help bees overcome Nosema infection.
Probiotic supplements for bees are meant to replenish beneficial microorganisms. There are many different varieties as well as delivery methods (liquid or syrup, pollen patties, pills, dry powders). Which ones are the most effective?