News Round-Up

Studying interactions between ground-nesting bees and soils


Many living creatures live in soil. Though their sizes range from microscopic soil microbes to larger animals like gopher turtles, they all call soil their “home.” Included in these ground-dwelling species are bees – vital in the pollination cycle of about 90% of plant life.

Rebecca Lybrand and her team at Oregon State University are studying the interaction between the bees and soil in agricultural settings.

According to the recently-published paper, bees contribute $15 billion to crop value annually. They pollinate about three-quarters of the fruits, vegetables, and nuts within the United States alone. Declines in honeybee colonies are a critical threat to agriculture and the global food supply. MORE

Header image: Jennifer Fedenko.