Bees - Sources - Sijia Hao English 125 Short 6 October 2010...

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Sijia Hao English 125 Short 6 October 2010 Thesis – Colony Collapse Disorder is responsible for the death of honeybees across the nation, which leads to shortages of specific foods in the future. 1. Too Busy Bees Bees are continuing to die due to Colony Collapse Disorder. Not only are domestic bees disappearing, the population of wild bees is dwindling also because agriculture is destroying their natural habitats. Both are necessary for pollination. This creates a vicious cycle; “fewer pollinating bees reduce yield per acre — and lower yield requires cultivation of more land to produce the same amount of food.” Although the amount of crops that need pollination are very few and only contribute to about 6% of total food production, they are specific foods whose demand is increasing because of their health benefits, such as apples, avocadoes, and almonds. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/25/opinion/25harder.html?_r=2&scp=13&sq=honey %20bees&st=cse (print) 2. Honeybees Vanish, Leaving Keepers in Peril Beekeepers are losing their bees for a variety of reasons. One theory is that the pesticides used to kill mites are harming the ability of the queen bee to spawn worker bees; queens are only living half as long as they used to. Another theory suggests that bees are unable to adapt to the quick changes in environment and become tired and confused trying to find their way back home. Bee farmers are losing profit as bees are dying and maintenance of hives becomes more expensive, so less and less people are willing to farm honeybees. At the same time, demand for bee pollination is rising, so current bee farmers must truck their bees all around the nation to satisfy the demand of fruit and vegetable farmers. All the moving leave the bees weak and more susceptible to viruses. Bee losses range from 30 to 60 percent on the east coast and as much as 70 percent are dying in Texas; a 20 percent loss is the norm. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/27/business/27bees.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=honey %20bees&st=cse (print) 3. Honey Bees Disappearing Still A Problem Several years after CCD first becoming an issue, researchers have still yet to find a concrete answer for the die-offs of bees. There seems to be many contributing factors to the issue, making the problem more complicated than previously thought. Scientists believe that a collection of diseases, ranging from bacterial to viral to fungal, are working together and killing bees en mass. Studies are being done trying to recreate CCD in live
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