Bee Lab Research
Our research program aims to promote the health of insect pollinators in Alabama and further afield by executing specific activities that fall under several stakeholder-identified priority areas.
To get a feel for some of the topics we work on, and our partners, check out below!
Status & Trends
Using citizen science, and by quite simply just getting our field boots dirty, we document the insect pollinators that reside in various habitats across Alabama – from utility right-of-ways to row crops. We also annually coordinate a national honey bee colony loss survey.
Partners: Alabama Power, Bee Informed Partnership, Southern Company, University of Maryland, USDA ARS, USDA NRCS.
PARASITES & PATHOGENS
By performing experiments in the lab and the field, we work to understand the effects of important honey bee parasites, how they possibly interact with environmental stressors, and how beekeepers can best manage them. Partners: Alabama Beekeepers’ Association, Alabama Farmer’s Federation, Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research, University of Bern, University of Georgia, USDA ARS.
Agricultural chemicals, foraging and nesting habitat, and weather, are all known to influence insect pollinator health. Using classic experiments and novel technologies, we investigate important environmental influences on bees and other insects, and identify appropriate management recommendations for stakeholders. Partners: Alabama Power, Bee Informed Partnership, Southern Company, Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research, University of Bern, University of Georgia, USDA-ARS, USDA-NRCS.
The intimate relationship between pollinating insects and flowering plants is so important to maintenance of biodiversity and human food security. We explore the role of specific pollinators in pollinating both native and cultivated plants. Partners: Alabama Agriculture Experiment Station, Alabama Department of Agriculture & Industries, USDA ARS, USDA NRCS.