General, Research, Technology

How do power lines affect bee behavior?

Bees are one of the most beneficial insects.on our planet. Basically, they are engaged in the pollination of crops, which is extremely important for human life. According to Science News, thanks to the work of bees, the U.S. earns $ 15 billion in revenue. However, recently beekeepers from different countries have noticed the mass extinction of these amazing insects. This phenomenon is blamed on the catastrophic amount of plastic waste and the active use of pest control products on plant fields, which also negatively affect beneficial bees. Recently it became known that power lines stretched along the fields are also to blame for the extinction of insects.

Around the world there has been a sharp decrease in the number of bees

May 2018 edition of Scientific Reportspublished the results of a study in which scientists noticed that some groups of bees get less food than others. It turned out that this is due to the presence of power lines between them and the food source. Then the researchers could not find out the reason for this behavior of insects, but in a new scientific work this was given the exact answer - the lines that are in the way of the bees cause them stress.

Today, power lines are stretched almost everywhere

Are power lines dangerous?

The fact is that around high-voltage cables forPower transmission is constantly operated by fairly powerful electromagnetic fields. Scientists have long understood that many living things can feel their effects, but how exactly they act on bees has remained a mystery all this time. To find out, entomologist Sebastian Shepard and his colleagues decided to conduct a small experiment. It has been described in detail in the scientific journal PLOS One.

Entomology is the section of zoology in which insects are studied. Scientists from this field, respectively, are called entomologists.

In the course of new scientific work, bees were exposedexposure to electromagnetic radiation for 17 hours. Such a duration was chosen due to the fact that it was so much time that the bees sleep in nests located under the wires of power lines at a meter height from the ground. After a set period of electromagnetic exposure, scientists tested how well the bees' intelligence works. Inside a special container they tried to teach them to associate the smell of certain colors with weak, but unpleasant for them current shocks.

Something like bees were exposed to current

A control group of bees that were not exposedelectromagnetic radiation, began to avoid the "dangerous smell" after five attempts. But the test group of bees learned to associate a floral aroma with a stroke much longer. From this it follows that power lines reduce the ability of bees to learn, and therefore reduce the chance to survive in difficult conditions. In addition, bees exposed to radiation showed great aggressiveness and often attacked each other.

Do you know what 10 things will disappear forever if the bees disappear?

With all this, Sebastian Shepard does not say thatpower lines lead to the death of bees. However, there is no doubt that they negatively affect their state of health. Perhaps in the near future, researchers will consider the effect of electromagnetic radiation on bees, taking into account the harm from insect repellents used in the fields. It is likely that they will make very interesting discoveries.

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It seems to have become a tradition that in the endArticles I recommend a documentary on a topic relevant to the material. This time I want to recommend the film "More Than Honey" 2012 release. The authors of this work interview various scientists and talk in detail about the life of these insects and their role in the modern world. The problem of extinction of bees in the film, by the way, is also affected.