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Bees as Biosensors: Chemosensory Ability, Honey Bee Monitoring Systems, and Emergent Sensor Technologies Derived from the Pollinator Syndrome.

Bromenshenk JJ, Henderson CB, Seccomb RA, Welch PM, Debnam SE, Firth DR - Biosensors (Basel) (2015)

Bottom Line: Observations of bee odor search behavior extend back to Aristotle.In the past two decades great strides have been made in methods and instrumentation for the study and exploitation of bee search behavior and for examining intra-organismal chemical communication signals.In particular, bees can be trained to search for and localize sources for a variety of chemicals, which when coupled with emerging tracking and mapping technologies create novel potential for research, as well as bee and crop management.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Bee Alert Technology, Inc., 91 Campus Drive, PMB# 2604, Missoula, MT 59801, USA. beeresearch@aol.com.

ABSTRACT
This review focuses on critical milestones in the development path for the use of bees, mainly honey bees and bumble bees, as sentinels and biosensors. These keystone species comprise the most abundant pollinators of agro-ecosystems. Pollinating 70%-80% of flowering terrestrial plants, bees and other insects propel the reproduction and survival of plants and themselves, as well as improve the quantity and quality of seeds, nuts, and fruits that feed birds, wildlife, and us. Flowers provide insects with energy, nutrients, and shelter, while pollinators are essential to global ecosystem productivity and stability. A rich and diverse milieu of chemical signals establishes and maintains this intimate partnership. Observations of bee odor search behavior extend back to Aristotle. In the past two decades great strides have been made in methods and instrumentation for the study and exploitation of bee search behavior and for examining intra-organismal chemical communication signals. In particular, bees can be trained to search for and localize sources for a variety of chemicals, which when coupled with emerging tracking and mapping technologies create novel potential for research, as well as bee and crop management.

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Wood’s Apidictor for honey bee colony swarm detection.
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biosensors-05-00678-f003: Wood’s Apidictor for honey bee colony swarm detection.

Mentions: The first marriage of electronic sensors and bees was a frequency analyzer called the Apidictor (Figure 3), developed, patented, and sold during the 1960s by a UK beekeeper and sound engineer, E.F. Woods [41]. The Apidictor was a frequency band-pass filter for detecting sound changes which occur in beehives up to two-to-three weeks before a bee colony swarmed. Work on a modern Apidictor has re-emerged in Europe, and Wood’s schematics are available on the Internet. There also is video of a 2012 iPhone-based Apidictor. In 2011, Bencsik et al. [42] described their swarm detector using accelerometers to analyze hive vibrations.


Bees as Biosensors: Chemosensory Ability, Honey Bee Monitoring Systems, and Emergent Sensor Technologies Derived from the Pollinator Syndrome.

Bromenshenk JJ, Henderson CB, Seccomb RA, Welch PM, Debnam SE, Firth DR - Biosensors (Basel) (2015)

Wood’s Apidictor for honey bee colony swarm detection.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4697140&req=5

biosensors-05-00678-f003: Wood’s Apidictor for honey bee colony swarm detection.
Mentions: The first marriage of electronic sensors and bees was a frequency analyzer called the Apidictor (Figure 3), developed, patented, and sold during the 1960s by a UK beekeeper and sound engineer, E.F. Woods [41]. The Apidictor was a frequency band-pass filter for detecting sound changes which occur in beehives up to two-to-three weeks before a bee colony swarmed. Work on a modern Apidictor has re-emerged in Europe, and Wood’s schematics are available on the Internet. There also is video of a 2012 iPhone-based Apidictor. In 2011, Bencsik et al. [42] described their swarm detector using accelerometers to analyze hive vibrations.

Bottom Line: Observations of bee odor search behavior extend back to Aristotle.In the past two decades great strides have been made in methods and instrumentation for the study and exploitation of bee search behavior and for examining intra-organismal chemical communication signals.In particular, bees can be trained to search for and localize sources for a variety of chemicals, which when coupled with emerging tracking and mapping technologies create novel potential for research, as well as bee and crop management.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Bee Alert Technology, Inc., 91 Campus Drive, PMB# 2604, Missoula, MT 59801, USA. beeresearch@aol.com.

ABSTRACT
This review focuses on critical milestones in the development path for the use of bees, mainly honey bees and bumble bees, as sentinels and biosensors. These keystone species comprise the most abundant pollinators of agro-ecosystems. Pollinating 70%-80% of flowering terrestrial plants, bees and other insects propel the reproduction and survival of plants and themselves, as well as improve the quantity and quality of seeds, nuts, and fruits that feed birds, wildlife, and us. Flowers provide insects with energy, nutrients, and shelter, while pollinators are essential to global ecosystem productivity and stability. A rich and diverse milieu of chemical signals establishes and maintains this intimate partnership. Observations of bee odor search behavior extend back to Aristotle. In the past two decades great strides have been made in methods and instrumentation for the study and exploitation of bee search behavior and for examining intra-organismal chemical communication signals. In particular, bees can be trained to search for and localize sources for a variety of chemicals, which when coupled with emerging tracking and mapping technologies create novel potential for research, as well as bee and crop management.

Show MeSH