This is, I kid you not, the actual title of a paper published in the January 2009 issue of the Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society. I love it, because it sounds like it could just as easily be the fan-encyclopedia description of some minor creature from a Lovecraft story. The bees in question are workers from three species, Lisotrigona cacciae, L. furva and Pariotrigona klossi, and were studied--going about their tear-drinking business--in Thailand. From the paper...
...workers drank lachrymation (tears) from human eyes in more than 262 naturally-occurred cases at 10 sites in N and S Thailand during all months of the year. A few visits were also seen to eyes of zebu and dog, indicating a probable broad mammalian host range. On man the bees were relatively gentle visitors, mostly landing on the lower eyelashes from where they imbibed tears for 0.5-2.5 min, often singly but occasionally in congregations of 5-7 specimens per eye.
The authors think the bees have adapted to drink tears as a way to get some protein in their diet and may, possibly, drink tears in lieu of feeding on pollen at all. That's pretty nifty, if a bit creep-tastic.
Image shows a Thai bee, though I'm not sure if it's actually one of the species studied in this paper. From Flickr user travlinman43, via CC.
The legendary cup, designed to punish greedy drinkers, explained masterfully by Salad Fingers’ dad Sir Martyn Poliakoff. His YouTube channel is packed with similarly excellent videos wherein lab assistant Neil is persuaded to execute unnerving experiments. (previously.)
A trio of scholars who study the psychology and philosophy of science have written a fantastic paper for Springer’s Sythese looking at the way that climate change conspiracy theorists construct their view of the world, and how these conspiracy theories contain self-contradictory theses (like the idea that climate change can’t be predicted and the idea […]
Princeton University psych prof Susan Fiske published an open letter denouncing the practice of using social media to call out statistical errors in psychology research, describing the people who do this as “terrorists” and arguing that this was toxic because of the structure of social science scholarship, having an outsized effect on careers.
When you’ve had a long day and it’s time to unwind, there’s a lot you can do to relax: drink some tea, take a shower or even read a book. But there’s one thing that’s essential to a comfortable night’s rest—and that’s investing in some really good sheets. Enter Bamboo Bed Sheets. These quality sheets retail for $120, but […]
The Avantree Powerhouse 4 Port Fast USB Charging Station brings high quality, high power, and still keeps your work space or home looking neat and organized. The best part about this charger is its capacity. It comes packing 4 USB charging sockets and a powerful 4.5A/22.5W output.. Its smartport technology means you don’t have to worry about frying your battery, either—it […]
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