After a three-day Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) mini-course in Oklahoma, students and faculty traveled to Istanbul to start an eight-week research expedition that studies the integrative biology of bees in Mediterranean habitats. Our team focuses on research significant to the recent phenomenon of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) that has struck Europe and America. The team will be studying the taxonomy of potential alternate native pollinators and how environmental factors and stress affect foraging behavior of bees. Studies will take place in Canakkale (Turkey), Lesvos (Greece) and Bursa (Turkey).
Learning the language and culture of the people we will be collaborating with helps us broaden our understanding and perspective to be better team players. Immediately after disembarking from the plane, you know you’re not “in Kansas anymore”… or in our case, not in Oklahoma anymore. Our first night was in Istanbul, a city that is a true melting pot of cultures from the west and east and offers Greek, Roman, Byzantine, and Turkish influences (Blue Mosque pictured).
— Corey Bower