Why do leaves change color in Autumn?

Autumn Fall
Credit: Rona Proudfoot

First of all to understand this phenomena one must be familiar with the process called photosynthesis in which plants makes it food. It is a photo chemical reaction in which the plants absorbs carbon dioxide and water from the surrounding in the presence of sunlight and chlorophyll (which acts as catalyst) and converts them to oxygen and carbohydrates such as sugars and starch.

LeafCredit: Lilla Frerichs

Red coloration due to Anthocyanins

Now these chlorophyll present inside the chloroplasts of plant are also responsible for giving plants its characteristic green color. Actually there are also other chemical agents which gives other colors to plants but the chlorophyll suppresses them and dominates and we observe green color in these summer and spring seasons. But when autumn comes the nights are long and days short which means less exposure to sun and less production of chlorophyll which results in green color deteriorating and other factors and colors are observed.


Color Influencing Agents

  • Chlorophyll: These are responsible for giving leaves their green color. It is necessary for photosynthesis, the chemical reaction that enables plants to use sunlight to manufacture carbohydrates for their food.
  • Carotenoids: These produce yellow, orange, and bright red colors in such things as corn, carrots etc. Foods containing these are really healthy.
  • Anthocyanins: These gives blue violet or red color to plant.

Why Do Bees Buzz?

BeeCredit: : Maciej A. Czyzewski

Really you must have wondered sometimes why in the world do these bees buzz at how they make that sound.

How Buzzing is produced

The buzzing sound is mainly caused by the rapid flapping of the wing. A honey bee has two pairs of wings that can beat 250 times/second. The wings are smaller than the body but the frequency is enough to lift the bee off. The vibrations created by these bees is what we hear. The bigger a bee is, the slower its wings beat. Which means the lower the pitch of the buzzing will sound.

Buzz Pollination

Bee buzzing

Why do they Buzz

Buzzing play an important role in the pollination of plants When certain species of “buzz-pollinating" bees, such as bumblebees, visit a flower, (Note: Honey bees do not pollinate by this phenomena) the buzzing they produce causes the pollen to fall of the flower.

The pollen then attaches to the bee's body and is deposited on the next flower the bee stops to visit. This process is known as pollination.

During the years plants of fruits such as blueberries, tomatoes have evolved to help make the process easier for buzzing bees.

Interesting Facts

FACT: Only seven species of honey bees are recognized, with a total of 44 subspecies.

FACT 2: Honey bees represent only a small fraction of the roughly 20,000 known species of bees.

FACT 3: We know that bees are supposed to be the most busy species and its true many of these bees are assigned different jobs and there may also be a difference in the wing beat frequencies of worker bees, drone bees, and queen bees. The variation may be small but any change can alter the calculated frequency.

FACT 4: Only the female worker bees can sting, aside from queen bee. So next time try to dodge only the female bees, that is if you can spot them.