ISBuC (v7) 2012
Weird World 1
'Ngoro Tak'
Scientists of every persuasion from around the world are flocking to darkest Africa to study a most remarkable animal. One that was, until very recently, completely unknown to science. An ISBuC special report from our science correspondent Barry Akrim.

A tiny creature, recently discovered in central Africa, is responsible for shaking the foundations of science around the world and causing scientists to stop and reconsider what could be described as the most fundamental articles of their faith.

Near the village of Banzali, on the banks of the Lubefu river in Tangaki Province, Yinagaland, a group of scientists have gathered to capture and study what they are now calling 'apiarensis noverans'. In the native dialect it is called 'Ngoro Tak' which means 'Bee of Leather' or 'Leather Bee'.

What makes it so remarkable is only just coming to light. Initially, it was brought to the attention of the scientific world as possibly the first example of an organism that didn't need to rest or sleep. Locally, they say this was common knowledge, but now, with the study group on their 114th day of activity without apparent rest, the world is beating a path to Banzali. A whole battery of scientific instrumentation has been hauled into the jungle to try and analyse these creatures lives. And the result of these complex and probing tests? Despite initial doubts, it is now abundantly clear that 'apiarensis noverans' never sleeps.

According to local folklore, Cana Ngoro Tak, the all seeing Bee God, watches over his land and knows everything that happens, and the real Ngoro Tak does indeed seem to have some god-like powers.
Apiarists, bee-keepers to you and I, from around the world will attest to the fact that hives 'sense' state of mind and will react accordingly. Up until now it was assumed that this was a reaction to the minute mood triggered chemical signals, called pheremones, that all living creatures give out, but the 'Leather Bee' seems set on forcing us to reconsider this verdict.

Dr Sally Turner explained. "We came to this area on just another 'bug-hunt', as they say in the movies. It's bread and butter stuff really, just trying to get samples of specific organisms for further research, but you never know.