Amusing

Bees in NYC:

Inevitably, the insects have adopted New York ways, as became evident this summer when they started producing red honey that tasted like cough medicine. It transpired that they were ignoring natural nectar to gorge on junk food – the sickly sweet waste sugar water produced by a factory that makes maraschino cherries for all those Manhattan cocktails.

It\’s not just humans bedazzled and mislead by capitalism\’s evil ways that go for junk food then.

10 thoughts on “Amusing”

  1. Bees aren’t native to the Americas anyway. They were introduced by the White Man. Shouldn’t we be looking to eradicate these invasive pests, in order to restore the balance of nature?

  2. Honey bees were brought to America in the 1620s, but how did American plants pollinate before then? There must have been some other bee. Humans aren’t native to the Americas either, they stole this land by sneaking over the land bridge 50,000 years ago.

  3. As Andi says there were plenty of bees in America before the European honey bee arrived, wild or bumble bees are the main natural pollinators amongst bees. I’m a bit suspicious of this story it whiffs of urban legend to me, if they’re using sugar water instead of nectar to make honey where are they getting pollen from ?

    Tim adds: But, umm, why do they “need” pollen?

    They don’t in fact, bees just use the nectar to make honey. And the nectar is produced by hte flowers to attract the bees who then carry the pollen around with them. As far as the bee is concenrned, the pollen doesn’t matter a damn.

  4. “…if they’re using sugar water instead of nectar to make honey where are they getting pollen from ?”

    From all the plants and windowboxes and NYC Botanical Gardens?

  5. Julia M. Probably, so they will have mixed nectar sources for their honey in which case the sugar water is probably just so strong a flavour that it taints all the honey, a well known phenomena, it would only take a few bees foraging it to do that. I still think it could be an urban myth though. I’m amused that bee keeping was forbidden in NY until recently, how did they enforce that, a no fly zone ?

  6. Hey I’ll buy that. I love cough medicine, but I can only have 5ml at a time. Get it out on the supermarket shelves, I’ll have 6 jars to be going on with. Kthx.

  7. So Much For Subtlety

    Ian B – “Bees aren’t native to the Americas anyway. They were introduced by the White Man. Shouldn’t we be looking to eradicate these invasive pests, in order to restore the balance of nature?”

    You mean White people? Give it time. Bees are, of course, native to the Americas. You mean that the European Honey bee is not native to America. That is true but there are some 20,000 or more species of bee. Many of which are native to America. America even has its own bumble bees. Latin America has an even wider range of bees including some interesting ones – there are flowers that look like young female bees so that a specific species of solitary bee will pollinate it by trying to have sex with it, there are others that look like young male so that they get pollinated by other young males fighting with it.

    2 Andi – “Honey bees were brought to America in the 1620s, but how did American plants pollinate before then? There must have been some other bee.”

    Well, the Americas are rich with bee species but not all pollination is done by bees. The most rich and varied source of pollinators I can think of is in Australia – the one place that lacked both the honey bee and any native bumble bee until Europeans turned up. Australian plants are pollinated by the other usual means – mainly the wind for many species – but also by flies, beetles, geckos and other lizards and even possums. America has some of these – but no possum pollinators I know of.

  8. I love the fact that New Yorkers drink so many cocktails that the cherries are causing environmental problems. Perhaps there’s hope for the Yankees yet.

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