Scientists in Australia have a plan for understanding what’s keeping honey bees off their game. They’re going to attach tiny little sensors (less than 0.1 inches wide) to the bees, let them fly around, and track how they move. Which sometimes means shaving the bees’ hairy backs:
“We take the bee into a cold place, usually to a fridge about five degrees Celsius, for five minutes and that is enough to have the bees sleeping,” Dr de Souza said. …
“We take them out again and attach it while they’re sleeping. In five minutes they wake up again and they’re ready to fly.”
But some need to be shaved first.
“Very young bees, they’re very hairy. At times we need to do something to help us,” Dr de Souza said.
But those are just details. The real significance of the study is how many bees they’re going to turn into shaved cyborgs: 5,000 of them. With that sort of data, the scientists will really be able to understand how the bees work.
We imagine the NSA is playing close attention to this so … if anyone tries to stick you into a fridge, just remember to feel around for a shaved patch to find the sensor afterwards.
CSIRO, University of Tasmania scientists fit tiny sensors onto honey bees to study behaviour, ABC.