Hi! I’ve always wanted a pen pal, and I’m looking for one as I begin college– I’d just like to learn about someone else and share thoughts and ideas. I love talking about history, international relations, theatre, tv shows (GoT, Parks and Rec), books (Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman, Douglas Adams, George R.R. Martin, and Shakespeare are names on some of my most dog-eared copies), and everyday stuff. I work in technical theatre, I collect rocks and comic strips, I debate in Model United Nations, and I love learning about anything from quarks to microbacteria. I hope to pursue pre-med, so it would be great to meet and talk to someone who likes to hear and discuss cool science and anatomy facts. I mess around with cosplay, watercolors, embroidery, and astrophysics in my free time. I’m hoping to learn new things, hear new ideas, and make a friend!
Preferences: I would like to hear from someone around my own age, so 17-21 would be best. Otherwise, if you have access to the postal service I can’t wait to get in touch!
Sen. Bernie Sanders offered the March for Science movement his resounding support via a Facebook post Thursday evening.
The movement — comprised of people in STEM fields, their
advocates and those who support evidence-based research — formed in
response to Trump’s administration, which has shown flagrant disregard for science and climate change.
The date of the march has yet to be set, but it will likely spark satellite marches across the country akin to Saturday’s Women’s March. Read more
Let’s hear it for the bees! (Let’s give the bees a ha-aa-aa-aaand!)
Spring is (supposedly) on its way, so we want to send a little love and appreciation to all the bees out there, making our everyday possible. Join us in celebrating these 8 reasons to celebrate our tiny, but mighty friends.
1. Bees make our surroundings beeee-autiful. In addition to pollinating our crops, bees are responsible for pollinating all of the things that make spring sing. And they’re no novices - they’ve been producing honey from flowering trees (fruit trees, nut trees, and bee-yond) for 10-20 million years! From the TED-Ed Lesson The case of the vanishing honeybees - Emma Bryce
2. Bees are social insects. Honey bees live together in large, well-organized family groups and engage in a variety of complex tasks not practiced by solitary insects. Communication, complex nest construction, environmental control, defense, and division of the labor are just some of the behaviors that honey bees have developed to exist successfully in social colonies. And they are not the least bit lazy: one single bee colony can pollinate 300 million flowers each day. From the TED-Ed Lesson The case of the vanishing honeybees - Emma Bryce
3. Bees are above words. They communicate through ‘dance’ and pheromones. By performing what’s referred to as the ‘waggle dance’, bees can share information about the direction and distance to patches of flowers yielding nectar and pollen, to water sources, or to new nest-site locations. From the TED-Ed Lesson Why do honeybees love hexagons? - Zack Patterson and Andy Peterson
4. Bees make great wingmen. Bees are very busy little matchmakers. The bees’ side of the whole “birds and the bees” business is to help plants find mates and reproduce. Today, around 170,000 plant species receive pollination services from more than 200,000 pollinator species, a good many of which are bees! In return, flowering plants are an abundant and diverse food source for pollinators. For instance, fossil records suggest that bees may have evolved from wasps that gave up hunting after they acquired a taste for nectar. From the TED-Ed Lesson How bees help plants have sex - Fernanda S. Valdovinos
5.Bees put food on our tables. Bees pollinate our crops on an industrial scale, generating over one-third of U.S. food production. Their work alone has contributed an estimated $15-20 billion of value to the U.S. agricultural business. From the TED-Ed Lesson The case of the vanishing honeybees - Emma Bryce
6. Bees can totally pack up a car better than you. Honeybees are some of nature’s finest mathematicians. Not only can they calculate angles and comprehend the roundness of the earth, these smart insects build and live in one of the most mathematically efficient architectural designs around: the beehive. Charles Darwin himself wrote that the honeycomb is a masterpiece of engineering. It is “absolutely perfect in economizing labor and wax.” From the TED-Ed Lesson Why do honeybees love hexagons? - Zack Patterson and Andy Peterson
7. Bees are hooked on coffee, too. When bees pollinate coffee plants, they consume low doses of caffeine from the coffee flower nectar, which means that bees are **BUZZZZZING** from a caffeine high just like us, AND helping us to get our coffee fix on the daily! From the TED-Ed Lesson The case of the vanishing honeybees - Emma Bryce
8. Honeybees are disappearing at astonishing rates. Not to be a **buzzkill**, but here’s a not-so-fun fact. In the past decade, the U.S. honeybee population has been decreasing at an alarming and unprecedented rate. Bee mortality rates in commercial production have more than doubled in the last decade, and in 2015, 40% of bee colonies were reported lost in just a single year. There are a variety of factors causing Colony Collapse Disorder, and scientists everywhere are working to prevent further loss of bees. Keep reading to see how you can help. From the TED-Ed Lesson The case of the vanishing honeybees - Emma Bryce
Do butterflies have any of our five senses? To some extent, adult butterflies have all five senses. By far the most important sense for butterflies is smell—the sensors on their antennae are highly attuned to odors. Butterflies can also taste. They have “taste buds” at the end of the tongue, and females taste plants to identify them by using sensory structures on their feet. Learn more in the Butterfly Conservatory.