Scientists still don’t have an answer for why honeybees are disappearing… North American honeybee populations have dropped by as much as 70% in the past few years. Whole hives vanish over night and no trace of the missing bees are ever found. No living bees, no honeybee bodies – they’re just gone. It’s the stuff of science fiction – it’s bizarre and it’s unnerving. In the U.S., 90 different crops depend upon pollination by honeybees. As the honeybees decline, so does food production.
There have been many theories as to the cause of CCD (Colony Collapse Disorder);
• Chemicals – increased pesticide and fertilizer use leads to increased ingestion by the bees.
• Genetically Engineered Crops – such crops produce pollen which is less nutritional for the bees.
• Radiation – caused by increased use of cell phones and wireless communication, the increased atmospheric electromagnetic radiation pushes the honeybees off course, prohibiting them from returning to the hive.
• Global Warming – leading to increased fungal and mite growth or more erratic temperature fluctuations, which the bees are not accustomed to.
Most scientists agree that CCD is likely caused by a combination of factors. With the situation growing more and more desperate as honeybees continue to disappear, leading bee biologists are working hard to find a cure for CCD. The federal government has also stepped in, allocating $80 million for research.
It is thought provoking to get so close to these bees, watching them work, wondering if they know what is going on – is there any sense of danger or fear – a buzz among the hives, if you will? Regardless of the human impact, a 70% decline in any species is a tragedy. Hopefully, the cause is discovered soon and it’s something we’ll be able to fix.
Canon EOS 5D
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM