Urban Life of Bees: A Pollination-Parasite Trade-Off Animals Biology Botany Environment 

Urban Life of Bees: A Pollination-Parasite Trade-Off

By Jonathan Trinastic @jptrinastic   Few people would consider cities the ideal home for bees, but what if these dense population centers could provide the means for healthy cohabitation? Scientists from Europe recently examined how bumblebees visit and pollinate flowers across urban and agricultural regions and found that urban areas can have a surprisingly beneficial effect on pollination rates. The reasons behind these results not only provide insight into how cities could be designed to better care for bees but also signal yet another danger of farming monocultures. Urban sanctuary…

Read More
Solar Eclipse 2017: View it Safely Astronomy 

Solar Eclipse 2017: View it Safely

By Kate Stone @GotScienceOrg Out of the sixty-two total solar eclipses that happened during the twentieth century, only eleven were visible from the continental United States, and only two of those eclipses crossed all of the US. The total solar eclipse that will be visible in North America on Monday, August 21, 2017, will stretch from Salem, Oregon, to Charleston, South Carolina, a path quite similar to the one happened on June 8, 1918, which crossed the United States from Washington State to Florida. In a little bit less than a…

Read More
Bee Friendly Garden Animals Botany Environment 

Tips for a Bee-Friendly Garden

By Steven Spence @TheStevenSpence More Diverse Than Honeybees When we hear about bees most of us think of honeybees (Apis mellifera) but there are many more bees around us. In fact, there are approximately 4000 native bee species in North America. Some of the most familiar types are bumblebees, mason bees, carpenter bees, and leaf cutter bees. These bee species also are important as pollinators. Fortunately, there are many ways we can help bees flourish whether we have farms, garden plots, backyards, or live in an urban environment with a…

Read More
Urban Gardening Benefits Outweigh Lead Exposure Risk Environment Health 

Urban Gardening’s Benefits Outweigh Lead Exposure Risk

By Emily Rhode @riseandsci Three years after the Flint water crisis began, lead in drinking water continues to make headlines across the United States. But should city dwellers also be worried about lead exposure from something as innocent as their neighborhood garden? New research suggests that unless you are eating the dirt itself, you should be just fine. America’s urban neighborhoods are often food deserts where fresh vegetables and fruit are sometimes impossible to come by. Some 49–93 million people in the United States are food insecure—they have limited or…

Read More
Screening Biodiversity Animals Biology Environment Videos 

Shelf Life Video: Screening Biodiversity

Scientists at The American Museum of Natural History explain why managing biodiversity is a key component in managing endangered species. This video is another in the Shelf Life series from the American Museum of Natural History. Even though one and a half million species of organisms have already been named and described, they represent just a tiny portion of the biodiversity of our planet. Having a distinct genetic identity is important because more variation tends to be better in the face of the changing world. And when populations get small and isolated…

Read More
Gardening Alternatives to Pesticides Animals Botany Environment 

Gardening Alternatives to Pesticides

By Steven Spence @TheStevenSpence Gardens are a delight Sadly, it’s not just gardeners, bees, butterflies, and birds that enjoy gardens. Gardens inevitably also attract insect pests, as I know firsthand from working on my little plot with flowers and fruit trees. In my first year of gardening, I didn’t know what to do to get rid of an aphid infestation, so I went to a local garden supply store and was advised to buy some spray-on pesticides, which I reluctantly used. After that experience, I began to talk with other…

Read More
Solar Eclipse: Who? What? Where? When? and How? Astronomy 

Solar Eclipse: Who? What? Where? When? and How?

Total Solar Eclipse On Monday, August 21, 2017, all of North America will be treated to an eclipse of the sun. Anyone within the path of totality can see one of nature’s most awe-inspiring sights—a total solar eclipse. This path, where the moon will completely cover the sun and the sun’s tenuous atmosphere, the corona, can be seen, will stretch from Lincoln Beach, Oregon to Charleston, South Carolina. Observers outside this path will still see a partial solar eclipse, where the moon covers part of the sun’s disk. Who Can See It? Lots of people! Everyone…

Read More