# Thread: Bees sense charge on flowers

1. Moderator
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## Bees sense charge on flowers

While the study cited was done on bumbles, it's pretty fascinating and offers an interesting possibility on how bees choose to avoid a recently-foraged blossom.

http://www.npr.org/2013/02/22/172611...rge-on-flowers

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## Re: Bees sense charge on flowers

That's interesting and it may be true. I have a 500KV power line that goes across my property and the bees were a constant presence in the garden under the power lines. Everything under the power lines has a slight charge at all times due to the electromagnetic field produced by the high voltage and current. I have laid under my old pickup and checked the transmission fluid and got a slight shock when I touched the metal of the truck. It might be a good idea for them to do a study under some power lines. Maybe I have a gold mine and don't know it!

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## Re: Bees sense charge on flowers

Originally Posted by Slow Modem
Everything under the power lines has a slight charge at all times due to the electromagnetic field produced by the high voltage and current.
What is the polarity when the power lines are alternating current? Maybe the truck got charged on rubber wheels and you grounded it when you got off.

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## Re: Bees sense charge on flowers

> I have laid under my old pickup and checked the transmission fluid and got a slight shock ....

The truck acts like the low voltage side of a transformer. The high voltage powerlines act as the high voltage side of the transformer. Fortunately, the transformer is very inefficient because it is essentially an "air gap" transformer, without a metal core.

Even fences under powerlines can get charged from this transformer effect. More here:
http://transmission.bpa.gov/lancom/L...ines_11-07.pdf

The resulting output of such a transformer would be 60 cycle AC, assuming the high voltage lines were also 60 cycle AC. Most high tension powerlines are AC, although there are a few specialized situations where DC is used.
Last edited by Rader Sidetrack; 02-23-2013 at 07:16 PM. Reason: activate link

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## Re: Bees sense charge on flowers

Even fences under powerlines can get charged from this transformer effect. More here:
http://transmission.bpa.gov/lancom/Living_and_Working_Around_High_Voltage_Power_Lines _11-07.pdf
You're exactly right. Anything I touch under those power lines has a slight charge/tingle feeling to it: Fence posts, tomatoes, chicken wire, okra, corn, etc. It's such high voltage and megawatts on those lines, anything close is affected. But, I had a great garden last year and it doesn't seem to bother the bees any. ...shrug....

I couldn't get the link above to work.

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## Re: Bees sense charge on flowers

Tomatoes and corn get charged?!

I fixed the broken link ...

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## Re: Bees sense charge on flowers

Interesting find Ben.

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