Science On Tap

Science On Tap

What's Eating the Bees?
Wednesday, April 25, 2018 . 6:30 PM

There's a parasite on our honey bees—and researchers agree that it tops the list of stress factors for honey bee health. The parasite, called Varroa destructor, is similar in proportion to humans having a tick the size of their hand. This creature exists, to some extent, in virtually every honey bee colony. Scientists believed for more than half a century that the mite consumes small amounts of bee blood. Now, they know that the mite liquifies a bee's liver and sucks part of the liver out of the bee's body. Knowing how the mite feeds, researchers can develop more effective treatment methods and find ways to remediate the negative health effects associated with parasitic feeding.

What's Eating the Bees? is presented by Samuel Ramsey, entomology graduate student at UMD and winner of UMD's 2017 Three-Minute Thesis Competition.

Science On Tap is a new monthly lecture series that explores the latest discoveries in science and technology in a relaxed atmosphere with food and drink.