Girl Planting seeds

Bumblebees exposed to Chernobyl-levels of radiation consume more nectar

The study simulated Chernobyl-levels of radiation exposure in a laboratory to investigate the impacts it may be having on insects inhabiting the exclusion zone. Although it has been previously found that bumblebees are sensitive to radiation, few studies have investigated the effects on their fitness. The dose rates of radiation in which negative effects occur are also uncertain. Jessica Burrows, who will be presenting the research at the conference, said: "An increase in nectar consumption for an individual bee could have important ecological consequences, as bees may need to spend more time foraging to collect nectar for their individual needs. As a result, the growth of bumblebee colonies may be impaired if fewer resources are available for the developing brood; this might reduce the number of bees in the ecosystem." Read more....



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