Monday, September 28, 2020

Banksian Brainy Bee

The freelance science journalist Elizabeth Preston tells us that bees with specialized diets seem to have larger brains than those bees that have complex social behaviors, which means that these big-brained bees don't share meals, I reckon. The particular bee Preston singles out to identify is Panurgus banksianus (not actually an all-around urge for a Banksy mural, despite the name), otherwise known as the large shaggy bee, an insect that keeps itself to itself, living alone in burrows throughout the sandy grasslands of Europe, listening to Neil Diamond's Solitary Man, and subsisting on EU social welfare. Just kidding. It lives on a diet of yellow-flowered members of the aster family, stars of the plant kingdom.


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