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November 30, 2015 AT 4:00 am

Vibrating bees give dizzying clues about their hives

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Via Christian Science Monitor.

A new device might help struggling bee colonies get their buzz back.

Using accelerometers, scientists from Nottingham Trent University in England developed a way to “read” the vibration patterns in bees’ dance language. These vibrations, say the scientists, give clues to the well-being of the hive.

“We [wanted] to develop a tool to find out the status of honeybee colonies – if the colony is starving, if there is a lot of foraging going on, or if the bees are preparing to swarm,” Dr. Martin Bencsik said in a press release.

“An accelerometer is like a microphone, but instead of sounds, it collects vibrations,” explains Dr. Martin Bencsik, a scientist at the School of Science & Technology at Nottingham Trent University, in an email to The Christian Science Monitor.

“If you put your hand on a cat that is purring, you will feel clearly the vibrations coming from the body of the cat. It is these vibrations that an accelerometer measures,” he writes.

Read more.


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