How well do you know your bees? Most of us have neighbours who think that every wasp, bat, and unicorn that appears in their backyard is one of our pesky honey bees. I guess it’s understandable that people of small thought will swat at every hovering insect while screaming “A Bee, See?” – but that doesn’t have to be you when it comes to flies or ants that mimic various minor species of bees.
The New York Times Science Section has a bee identification quiz for you. It’s fairly easy if you stop and think about each one. Here, at the top of my blog page, is the picture from NYT, but you’ll have to go there to participate. Click on each bee image and then click the DONE link that will appear while you’re making your selections.
Here’s what you should see as soon as you complete this little bee quiz:
After you complete and submit the quiz, an article about bee population decline will open. Don’t forget to try the bonus question (How many species of bees are in the USA?) which appears in the article. It is only slightly alarmist in tone and will give you an idea of what people are thinking about these days when it comes to disappearing bees.
If you are really interested in this subject, the author (Joe Wilson, Utah State) recently co-authored Interest exceeds understanding in public support of bee conservation, which appeared September 5th in Frontiers in Ecology. It’s a good read, too, though it’s currently behind a paywall.