As some of you may have seen on Facebook, the Starks Lab “bee huts” got a serious facelift this summer. During the first week of the Tufts University Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program, we were landscapers, painters, and carpenters—and it was a blast! Although I am a field biologist, I can honestly say that […]
Das ist cool
Last week, I was lucky enough participate in the first ever Plant and Pollen Metabarcoding Workshop at the University of Würzburg in Würzburg, Germany. The workshop was organized and led by Dr. Alexander Keller. In addition to Alex, we had two amazing teachers: Wiebke Sickel (PhD student, teacher for the lab portion), and Markus Ankenbrand […]
What's that smell?
After returning from Costa Rica, it’s hard to decide what to write about—there’s so much! I saw amazing plants and animals, released baby sea turtles, made great friends, conducted research, and ate a LOT of rice and beans. This first Costa Rica-themed post will focus on a particular pollinator I fell in love with: the […]
Stop copying me!
There are a lot of bee mimics out there. Some are so good that they trick people who spend a lot of time with bees (like myself)! To the right is a photo of me with one of those mimics (photo credit goes to Clint Perry, a Tufts graduate student in the Psychology department). At […]
Battling bees: A day in the field
To investigate honey bee mineral preferences, I put out artificial feeders (the upside-down tubes in the video) with different mineral solutions to create a “tasting table” for the honey bees. Once trained to feed from the tasting table (see last week’s How to Train Your Honey Bees), the bees forage at the table, and drink […]
How to train your honey bees
Honey bees can be trained to do a lot of things. Recently, they have been trained to detect bombs, diabetes, and maybe even cancer. I simply train my honey bees to drink from artificial feeders at a certain location. Easier said than done (in the summertime anyway). Whether honey bees are being trained to detect […]
If you are a beekeeper, you have probably asked this question…
Why do honey bees like dirty water? It is a common question—in fact, this is not the first blog post concerning honey bees and dirty water (see Mud Songs and Honey Bee Suite)—and yet, there is not a definitive answer. I first started keeping bees when I joined the Starks Lab in the summer of […]