Originally Posted by XYZ
Um..actually a UK Independent article cited in the bee article specifically said it was mobile phones that were placed near the hives and that the bees refused to go near them.
While others have pointed out that the citation was incorrect, theres a big problem with the fact that the EMF surrounding your typical phone is VERY small. Your average phone produces very little current (compared to say your clock radio). In ideal conditions the EMF then falls-off at an inverse-cube rate, so your talking a few milimeters of any meaningful field. Even in sub-optimal conditions (poorly designed phones really) the EMF is going to be very small.
I believe that the prevailing theory had more to do with the radio frequency used by the phones. The idea is that the bees use some type of RF signal to get home, and that the phones where interfering with that. I don't think this ever held up under scientific scrutiny however.