Prestigious Grant Awarded: Studying Honey Bee Social Networks to Improve Colony Health

Adrian teaching young students about bees
Scientist and educator, Adrian Perez shares his passion about bees with elementary school class.

Dr. Brian Johnson and ABGG graduate student Adrian Perez have been awarded a three-year grant by Project Apis Mellifera and the National Honey Board for research focused on honey bee health. The project aims to use social network analysis to understand how honey bee colonies change their social interaction patterns in response to various pathogens, food availability, and other environmental factors. The funding mainly supports the set up of a tracking system that will allow for automated monitoring of thousands of workers in the hive. This proposed work will shed light on how honey bee colonies cope with compounding stressors through their complex social organization and may provide insights into when honey bee colonies are most likely to be devastated by infection.