Around the globe, bee populations are in trouble. As about one third of the human food supply is reliant on bee pollination, this in turn spells trouble for us. In this course, we will explore the incredible diversity of bees, the primary threats facing their populations, and the strategies scientists (including those at UMass Amherst) are developing to help bee populations. We will examine the meaning of the relatively new phrase "pollinator health," including how it is measured and assessed, and will specifically explore these major threats to pollinator populations: pesticides, disease, anthropogenic land use change, and even other (managed) bees! Students engaged in this course will learn that "saving the bees" is a complex issue with lots of room for debate and further discovery.
- Teacher: Rosemary Malfi