Posts Tagged: butterflies
Bees do it. Butterflies do it. Beetles do it. Birds do it. Bats do it. Do what, you ask? They pollinate! The Bohart Museum of Entomology at the University of California, Davis, will greet visitors on Saturday, March 14 at its open house, themed...
A Western tiger swallowtail, Papilio rutulus, visiting a flowering quince in the UC Davis Arboretum. Butterflies are pollinators. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A honey bee pollinating an almond blossom. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A lady beetle pollinating an Iceland poppy. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
When the week is about butterflies instead of guerrilla attacks, murderous rampages, measles outbreaks, and deflated footballs, it's a good week. Butterflies draw smiles instead of scowls, pleasure instead of pain, glee instead of grief. So, here's...
Ulysses butterfly (Papilio ulysses) collection in the Bohart Museum of Entomology. These are all males. The females have barely any blue on their wings. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
This is a Paris peacock butterfly (Papilio paris), part of the Bohart Museum of Entomology collection. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
The Bohart Museum of Entomology houses nearly eight million specimens from all over the world. Here are some of the butterfly specimens. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Butterfly expert Art Shapiro, distinguished professor of evolution and ecology at UC Davis, isn't feeling so well--to put it mildly--but he still went out on one of his butterfly monitoring expeditions today at his study site in North Sacramento. He...
Art Shapiro saw 19 of this species, Pieris rapae, or cabbage white, today at his North Sacramento study site. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Butterflies flutter. Bees don't. Indeed, some bees seem to possess Superman's extraordinary power of "faster than a speeding bullet." They're just lacking a blue costume, a red cape and an "S" on their thorax. The butterfly doing the...
A Gulf Fritillary sips nectar from a Mexican sunflower (Tithonia), unaware of what will soon occur. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A speeding bullet, a male longhorned digger bee, targets the unsuspecting Gulf Fritillary. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Startled by the digger bee, the Gulf Fritillary shoots straight up. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
It's back to normal. The Gulf Fritillary finds another blossom. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
About 35 percent of the food we eat depends on the assistance of bees to pollinate plants and trees so they will produce fruit, nuts or vegetables. It takes 1.6 million colonies of honey bees to pollinate California's 800,000 acres of almond trees.
Our food choices would be dramatically reduced if bees weren't around to pollinate. To illustrate what the produce section of a grocery store would look like in a world without bees, Whole Foods Market removed the products that depend on pollination from one of its stores and took a photo. See the difference: http://ucanr.tumblr.com/post/84164840510/kqedscience-whole-foods-shows-customers-the. Without bees, more than half the fruits and vegetables were eliminated.
Honey bees and other pollinators are being threatened by the drought, disease, mites, loss of habitat and food sources, according to Eric Mussen, UC Cooperative Extension specialist in the Department of Entomology at UC Davis and bee expert.
Beth Grafton-Cardwell, UC Cooperative Extension specialist in the Department of Entomology at UC Riverside and director of Lindcove Research and Extension Center, talks about the role of pollinators in California agriculture in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8suOt5PnzWc&feature=youtu.be.
To see photos of different kinds of pollinators and to learn more about how to help them thrive, visit our pollinator page. On May 8, help count the pollinators in your community and add them to the map at http://beascientist.ucanr.edu.