Have you heard the buzz about the mysterious disappearance of North America’s bees? Beekeepers in 27 states and two Canadian provinces have reported an average loss of 73 percent three quarters! in the last six months and are calling the phenomenon “Colony Collapse Disorder.” Theories abound as to why they’re abandoning their queens and hives in droves could be mites or fungus or genetically-engineered crops, or perhaps disruption of their complex social patterns by industrial trucking or cell phone towers and while scientists work to get their papers published about the problem, our food sources could be in real jeopardy: Far more than just honeymakers, bees pollinate almost every domestic crop of fruits, veggies and nuts on our tables.
But it’s because U.S. agriculture relies on only one species of pollinator that we’re in this position:
A resilient agricultural system requires diverse pollinators. This speaks to a larger conservation issue. Some evidence indicates a decline in the estimated 4,500 potential alternate pollinators native species of butterflies, wasps. and other bees. The blame for that sits squarely on human activity habitat loss, pesticide use, and imported disease but much of this could be offset by different land-use practices.”
Pray with me that the bee emergency leads to a revolution to saner, organic farming. Or come Rosh Hashanah, we’ll be baking honeycakes with Karo syrup. Blecch.