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The Mystery of the Disappearing Bees

This story caught my attention in part because of my son. He’s a very quiet two year old, and we nicknamed him “Dr. Doolittle” because he loves all animals so much and always talks to them.

But the other day he shocked my by coming in from the back yard, just babbling happily away. He had one finger extended to show me what he’d found.

A live bee was sitting quite contentedly on his finger.

As you can imagine, I got rid of the bee quite quickly. He didn’t get stung and I didn’t want to risk him trying to pet the bee or something. You just never know with two year olds.

This just happened a couple weeks ago, and of course came to mind when I read this story on Yahoo News about how bees in the US are disappearing, and no one quite knows why.

It’s being called Colony Collapse Disorder, and research is being done to figure out the cause – pathogen or toxin. Whatever the cause, the potential impact is huge. Just think about it.

The fact that other bees or parasites seem to shun the emptied hives raises suspicions that some kind of toxin or chemical is keeping the insects away, Cox-Foster said.

That quote really makes one wonder what will be found out. It also raises the point that we need to be more careful about the chemicals we use in food production and other ways. It is quite possible that this collapse is due to something being used on the theory that it will help improve the crops, but if it’s killing the bees, what good is that? Pollination is a little tough without them.

I can’t tell directly how things are going for bees in my area. I haven’t seen many, aside from the one my son brought in, but the freezes we had during the winter killed so much of the garden that bees have little reason to visit just yet. We’re somewhat short on flowers for them.

Technorati Tags: disappearing bees, environment, colony collapse disorder

2 replies on “The Mystery of the Disappearing Bees”

  1. […] I just read over on Tree Hugger that colony collapse disorder, which I posted about the other day, is also being seen in the UK. You just can’t help but think of the terrible potential impact due to this. Much as you don’t generally want too close an encouter with a bee, especially if you’re allergic to their stings, they’re vital to our farmers and therefore to the rest of us. […]

  2. […] in my area carefully, though. For those of you not familiar with it, there’s something called colony collapse disorder that has killed off about a quarter of all the commercial behives in the United States. Pretty […]

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