The honeybee could easily be considered the hardest working domesticated organism in the world. The bee not only works for itself, but for the survival of the entire hive. Unknowingly, these busy little warriors also are a very important part of our lifestyle.
Not only do bees provide us with honey, they also assist in pollinating one third of the food we eat. With this large influence on agriculture, it is very important that we respect and protect these little creatures.
In recent years, the media has highlighted the alarming story of “the disappearing bees”. In the United States, Europe, and Asia, countless beehives are being abandoned with only a few larva, leaving the queen to starve. These hives are left barren and leave no signs of where the bees have migrated; they just disappear over a period of hours or days. As such events became more and more common, the term Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) was created in the United States.
For years, the cause for CCD was unknown, and many theories were passed around. Cell phone waves and radio waves from Russian satellites were theories presented by the media as a viable explanation of CCD.
Although, as time went on and more attention was brought to the issue, beekeepers found that hives brought to pollinate pesticide-based farms had a higher rate of CCD than hives that pollinated organic farms. This has sprouted a strong movement by beekeepers to promote the ban of pesticide use on bee-pollinated crops.
Scientists found that seeds that were exposed to pesticides would germinate and have the chemical present in their pollen. These contaminants would then be transferred to the bees, making them susceptible to parasites that negatively impact their nervous system. As a result, the number of hives would decimate.
Bees are excellent indicators of environmental quality, so the hives that have been affected by CCD should be a very clear and alarming sign to society that something is wrong.
Beekeepers that haven’t felt such a drastic affect by CCD are those that take a more holistic approach, thus establishing and maintaining a symbiotic relationship within their land. They keep a farm with multiple organic crops and do not excessively exploit the bees to the extent of money-chasing beekeepers.
As the world still revolves around money, and Colony Collapse Disorder is still occurring, what are some things you can do for the bees?
You can support holistic beekeepers in your area by purchasing their products, planting bee friendly plants around your property, start your own beehive or simply by not swatting that pesky bee the next time it thinks you’re a tulip.
Always remember that every day we have many chances to show our beliefs. So, use your actions and your eating habits to promote positive change!
“Only when the last tree has died, the last river has been poisoned, and the last fish has been caught will people realize that we cannot eat money.”
For more information on the disappearance of the bees visit: http://www.vanishingbees.com