As bumblebee diets narrow, ours could too

There has been a lot of buzz about honeybees' failing health because they pollinate our produce. Less well known is how critical bumblebees are for some of our favorite foods. And their numbers are also rapidly declining.

Six suborbital research payloads from MIT fly to space and back

Blast off! MIT made its latest foray into research in space on May 2 via six payloads from the Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative, tucked into Blue Origin's New Shepard reusable space vehicle that took off from a launchpad ...

Cannibalism helps fire ants invade new territory

Tropical fire ants (Solenopsis geminata), originally from central and South America, are a highly aggressive, invasive ecological pest. Our new research has shed light on how they successfully establish new colonies.

Two-step path to shrinking worker bee gonads

The dramatic difference in gonad size between honey bee queens and their female workers in response to their distinct diets requires the switching on of a specific genetic program, according to a new study publishing March ...

Ant larvae fight the offspring of parasitic queens

In certain ant species, queens invade the colonies of other species, kill the host queen or queens and lay their eggs in the host nest. After this, the host workers tend to the offspring of the parasitic queen as if their ...

A tasty Florida butterfly turns sour

The viceroy butterfly is a mimic, modeling its orange-and-black colors after the queen butterfly, a bug that tastes so disgusting predators have learned not to eat it or anything that looks like it, including viceroys. The ...

A single gene turns socially organized bees into social parasites

A small change in the genetic makeup of the South African Cape bee turns the socially organised animal into a fighting parasite. This change ensures that infertile worker bees begin to lay their own eggs and fight other colonies. ...

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