Poorer neighbourhoods are better for bees

A couple of years ago, people from Leeds University put traps on my allotment and in my garden to sample the invertebrates. Now the results are in a mainstream newspaper. Dr Mark Goddard says that poorer neighbourhoods have more bees.

This isn’t surprising, really. As the article says, posh gardening can be quite unfriendly to weeds and therefore to the invertebrates and other wildlife species which rely on weeds. To honeybees too, although I haven’t yet looked for detail about that particular species. On the other hand, anybody who gardens can choose to garden for wildlife. We British have been called ‘a nation of gardeners’ and we deserve that. We love our gardens, bees and all.


About argylesock

I wrote a PhD about veterinary parasitology so that's the starting point for this blog. But I'm now branching out into other areas of biology and into popular science writing. I'll write here about science that happens in landscapes, particularly farmland, and about science involving interspecific interactions. Datasets and statistics get my attention. Exactly where this blog will lead? That's a journey that I'm on and I hope you'll come with me.
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12 Responses to Poorer neighbourhoods are better for bees

  1. sharechair says:

    Wow… how interesting!

    • argylesock says:

      I’m glad you like it. This is one of my before-breakfast blog posts. I’m a morning person and I do most of my best thinking before breakfast. But I’ve just had several nights of poor sleep and the house is full of lovely but distracting babies.

      When I cobble together a post so quickly as this one, it’s surprising that people like it. Even more so when it’s quite specific to the place where I live. I’ve just checked your ‘About me’ page and you don’t say where you are but your choice of words sounds American or Canadian.

      The topic of weeds and wildlife is relevant to many places around the world, I think.

  2. eqfe says:

    In the US there is a huge problem with some what mysterious, widespread bee colony collapse. Disease and parasites are part of the problem, cut other factors are thought to be at work. Ironically, the healthiest hives in the US today are in Urban areas, even in New York City. http://www.ted.com/talks/noah_wilson_rich_every_city_needs_healthy_honey_bees.html

  3. Daniel Digby says:

    Sorry about posting this here, but I thought I had your e-mail address and I don’t. I became interested in biology again when I read Lynn Margulis’ Five Kingdoms. Since then, I’ve had an interest in taxonomy that won’t go away.

    I know it’s may the last thing you’re curious about, but I figured that you probably know quite a bit more about it than I. Since Tom Cavalier-Smith started meddling in the field, it changes every time I like at it. When I first saw unikonta and bikonta, I thought that it made perfect sense, but now it seems that the bikonta are paraphyletic, though at least it seemed to be systematic.

    Today I was reading about the class myxogastria, and realized that I’d never seen it. (It turns out to be my old friend myxomycota. Why the change?) Then I found out that eukaryotes are now divided into six kingdoms (I’m sure this is only an interim also) — animalia, fungi, amoebazoa, plantae, chromalveolata, rhizaria, and excavata, although there are also several alternative taxonomies. (For some reason, I thought I had remembered excavata being folded into another kingdom.)

    If you feel up to the task, a discussion of modern taxonomy would be greatly appreciated. If not, that’s entirely understandable — it’s an ever changing subject. I didn’t intend the complete non sequitor from your topic, but as I said earlier, I couldn’t find your e-mail address.

  4. Pingback: Gardens for wildlife | Science on the Land

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