By Sara Spary in The Huffington Post.
Bumblebees living in urban areas are thriving better than their rural cousins, research from Royal Holloway and Imperial College London has claimed.
The research looked at why bumblebees appear to be more abundant in cities and towns compared to the countryside – despite the fact urban areas are seen as less wildlife friendly.
Researchers bred colonies of bees in a lab and then placed the in 38 different locations as part of the study for 10 weeks. These included a range of inner city gardens and rural farms.
“We found that bumblebee colonies placed in agricultural areas produced significantly fewer reproductive offspring than those in village or city sites,” lead researcher Ash Samuelson from Royal Holloway said. “This means that these colonies would be less able to pass their genes on to the next generation.”
Samuelson added: “We also found that agricultural colonies were smaller and had less stored food, which may have contributed to the lower reproductive success.”
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