Viruses, fungal infections, suppressed immune systems, pesticides, herbicides, parasites – have they caused honeybees to lose their sense of direction? Why have they disappeared in such alarming numbers?
Some bee farmers have lost 90% of their hives. And usually there are no dead bees around the hives. They’re just gone.
I never knew before this crisis that farmers and orchard owners bring in truckloads of bees to fertilize their crops. I should have known, but I just never thought about how all our crops are fertilized.
Many of those bees are GONE! The effect on our food supply should be drastic! It is very alarming, and the scientists are only guessing what the cause is. They don’t know.
Yesterday I read this great column by Mark Morford in the San Francisco Gate, titled “Apocalypse Of The Honeybees: How poetically appropriate that the End of Humanity should come from such a tiny, sweet source.”
He writes, “. . . here's the bottom line: Regardless of whether or not we figure it out, Colony Collapse Disorder is merely one more of those charming warning signs, one of those increasingly frequent messages from the gods writ large across the sky of humanity's arrogance and merciless abuse of nature's integrity. Hell, it's an abuse we've engaged in for so long we don't even really think about it anymore. And therein lies our likely demise.”
On our little farm, we have our own honeybee hive in the hollow of a tree (drat I deleted those photos last year, they were bad, but they would have shown you!), so we’re hoping our own fruit trees will be fertilized.
Rauf tells me there are no bees in India. Women (small fingers) fertilize the crops. Did the same thing happen there? (Thank you, rauf, for the correction.) I miswrote that there are no bees in India. He was talking about "Vanilla, which was not grown in India until recently, and the bees to pollinate the flowers are not found here, it is manually done by farm hands specially ladies, as it is a delicate process."