Science Sunday – Pesticides and Bee Colony Collapse Disorder

Many of you have heard over the years a few stories about the disappearance of bees. Some of you may have even heard that this has the potential to end life as we know. While the latter is something of an over-hyped exaggeration, bee colonies certainly are fundamental to the agriculture industry. For example, the commercial almond business would not exist without healthy bees. Diseases or disorders that wipe out bee colonies would completely eliminate the ability of the average American to eat almonds, ever. There are plenty of other crops where this extrapolation also applies.

[David] Hackenberg, 63, in case you don’t remember, is the politically wired commercial beekeeper who winters in Trilby and who was the first in his industry to report the now-chronic malady, colony collapse disorder, in late 2006.

…on Thursday, the journal Science published two new, more damning studies about the pesticides’ potential danger.

Hackenberg and Science both have identified a group of pesticides believed to be mainly responsible for colony collapse disorder. No surprise, this particular pesticide is used primarily on corn crops.



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