Power lines may become honey bee homes

Dec 15, 2005

A scientist at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City is proposing a novel solution to the dwindling number of U.S. honey bees.

Kimberly Russell, a researcher of invertebrate zoology, says honey bees take refuge under power lines when utility companies allow such land to grow shrubs and flowers, National Geographic News reported.

But utilities routinely keep the land mowed beneath their power lines to prevent vegetation from interfering with the delivery of electricity.

Meanwhile, U.S. farmers rely on European honeybees to pollinate their crops, but diseases, mites and pesticides have devastated those bee populations in recent decades.

Many scientists say wild, native bees can take up the slack, but Russell says such bees need a good habitat when they're not pollinating.

She says electric utility companies have a public relations problem with many people disliking power lines. She told National Geographic: "If they can put up a sign that says 'Wildlife Refuge,' maybe people will dislike the lines less. There's an opportunity there we should follow up on."

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

Explore further: How were fossil tracks made by Early Triassic swimming reptiles so well preserved?

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

World's rarest wild cat doubles in number

15 minutes ago

At least 57 Amur leopards now exist in Russia's Land of the Leopard National Park, up from just 30 cats counted in 2007, according to new census data announced last week. An additional 8-12 leopards were ...

Parasitism runs deep in malaria's family tree

17 minutes ago

The ancestors of a large family of parasites—including those that cause malaria—were equipped to become parasites much earlier in their lineage than previously assumed, according to University of British Columbia (UBC) ...

Recommended for you

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.