Bees trained to detect Covid-19

And other stories from the stranger side of life


Researchers in the Netherlands have trained bees to identify samples infected with Covid. The scientists in the bio-veterinary research laboratory at Wageningen University gave the bees sugary water as a reward after showing them samples infected with Covid and no reward after being shown a non-infected sample. The bees would then spontaneously extend their tongues to receive a reward when presented with an infected sample.

Dracula’s castle offers Covid jabs

Bran Castle, the inspiration for the vampire’s home in Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula, has become a vaccination centre. Romanian medical workers with bloody fang stickers on their scrubs are offering free shots of the Pfizer vaccine. Recipients also get free access to view the castle’s exhibit of 52 medieval torture tools. The castle’s manager, said: “The idea... was to show how people got jabbed 500 to 600 years ago.”

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.


Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up

Spacecraft finds ‘hum’ beyond solar system

A spacecraft has picked up a “hum” beyond our solar system. Voyager 1, a NASA vessel that is currently 14 billion miles away from Earth, has detected the sound of the universe. Astrophysicist Stella Ocker said: “It’s very faint and monotone because it’s in a narrow frequency bandwidth.” The spacecraft records the “constant drone” of plasma.

Continue reading for free

We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.

Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.

Chas Newkey-Burden has been part of The Week Digital team for more than a decade and a journalist for 25 years, starting out on the irreverent football weekly 90 Minutes, before moving to lifestyle magazines Loaded and Attitude. He was a columnist for The Big Issue and landed a world exclusive with David Beckham that became the weekly magazine’s bestselling issue. He now writes regularly for The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Independent, Metro, FourFourTwo and the i new site. He is also the author of a number of non-fiction books.