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Count Bees in Your Back Yard to Aid Scientists

San Francisco State University scientists need to know about our local bee populations.

Biologists at San Francisco State University are running a nationwide survey of bee populations to determine greater trends across the country. 

It has been shown over the last five years that bees are found far more densely in rural areas than urban areas. According to Philip Riley of SFSU Communications, "urban features such as buildings and parks fragment or destroy bee habitats, making their job of pollinating plants much more difficult."

Scientists at the school are now aiming for another round of data thanks to the willing participation of people all over the country. All they ask is that you sit in your garden for at least 15 minutes and count the bees that you see. You can do this any time in the next few days, but Aug. 11 has been designated as "The Great Bee Count." All the information you need to participate can be found here.

In 2011, over 100,000 people participated in the bee count across the country. Already in Capitola, Soquel and Live Oak, eight residents have counted bees in their gardens. Check out the map above to see who has already participated. Pink dots indicate that the person saw 1-10 bees in an hour of observation and yellow dots indicate 10-20 bees per hour.  

Do you have bees in your garden? Are you willing to help in The Great Bee Count? Tell us in the comments!

Peggy Ross August 12, 2012 at 02:41 AM
I saw a most unusual bee in my tiny yard last month. It was golden, with black lines forming rectangles on the rear of its back, unlike the usual bees with dark-honey coloring and dark parallel stripes. The bee seemed to be sectioned differently, too. If you email me, I can email you a picture of it. peggyross@sbcglobal.net.

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