Bees went “lights out” during the 2017 solar eclipse

Solar eclipses are viewed as must-see phenomena, but bees don’t treat them that way, a study in the Annals of the Entomological Society of America says.

What we’re hearing: Nothing. During the 2017 solar eclipse, bees were completely silent. As the full shadow of the moon covered up sunlight, bees stopped buzzing. They resumed activity shortly after the moon’s alignment between the Earth and the sun shifted and daylight returned.

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The details: This break in action was caught on tape by a group of more than 400 volunteers using tiny microphones and temperature sensors near flowers across 16 locations in Oregon, Idaho and Missouri, all of which were in the path of totality.

Researchers expected to see a change in behavior, said Candace Galen, the lead author and a professor of biological sciences at the University of Missouri, according to a press release. Marina Koren writes in The Atlantic that what was unexpected was the abruptness of the shift.

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