Perhaps it is not common that when we go do our groceries we stop to think what makes it possible for us to conveniently shop for a wide variety of foods. If there is one thing we may tend to forget is that a tiny insect, often feared due to its very threatening sting, but … Read More
Perhaps it is not common that when we go do our groceries we stop to think what makes it possible for us to conveniently shop for a wide variety of foods. If there is one thing we may tend to forget is that a tiny insect, often feared due to its very threatening sting, but known for the wonderful honey they produce: bees. Bees are responsible for the of one-third of all of the world’s foods and beverages. Without bees, we would not have a lot of the things we may take for granted like apples, mangoes, coffee, cabbage, papaya, sesame, eggplant, vanilla, tomatoes to name a few. What has been called the Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) a fancy term to call the massive worldwide disappearance of bee colonies around the world. This loss of bee colonies has cost $30 billion worth of crops in the US alone. It has wiped out close to 10 million beehives worth $2 billion as of July 2013. From 2006 to 2009, over one-third of beekeepers reported colonies collapsing accompanied by a “lack of dead bees,” according to a survey conducted by the Apiary Inspectors of America (AIA).
Cause #1: The bee virus
The bee virus hypothesis is perhaps the most prevalent and long lasting reason for the declining bee numbers. The varroa mite or carrier of the virus which is killing bees has been called the “most widely distributed virus virus in the planet.” The varroa destructor has initially been identified to have spread from Asia and across the world for the past 50 years. In Hawaii alone, when the virus was identified in 2007, the aftermath of the varroa mite left Oahu Island with 274 out of 419 bee colonies wiped out. In addition to that, another virus deformed wing virus (DWV) had also taken up a much deadlier matching up the loss of bees and having found by researchers that the incident of DWV with that of the varroa mite.
Therefore, researches have found that the conjunction of the varroa mite significantly increases the effectiveness for DWV to destroy colonies as the years passed. Among other bee viruses blamed for bee colony decline, include: the acute bee paralysis virus, Israel Acute Paralysis Virus, Acute Bee Paralysis Virus, Chronic Paralysis Virus, Kashmir Bee Virus, Deformed Wing Bee Virus, Black Queen Cell Virus and Sacbrood Virus.
Cause #2: Pesticides
Pesticides or insecticides have shown to have link in bee decline in that recent studies and research indicates that doses of pesticides induces for bees to collect half of the pollen they normally do, which would lead their youth to starve as pollen constitute the bee’s primary source of food. It is however not very clear as there is also contradictory data that suggest pesticides is not the cause but that it certainly plays a role in the diminishing bee numbers.
Cause #3: Electromagnetic radiation from cell phones and wifi
A study in Switzerland has shown that the signals from cell phones not only confuse bees, but also directly lead tot heir death. In over 83 experience have yielded the same results, of course we are leaving a world that is not more connected than ever. with nearly 1 billion people owing a mobile phone, more cell towers and higher frequencies such as are the long term evolution (LTE) speeds of wireless broadband internet, the situation is not looking very bright for bees.
What happens is that bees sense the signals transmitted by phones, when a call is establish this emits instinctive warming sign for the bees to leave the hive, but frequencies confuse the bees causing them to fly erratically. Similarly some theorize that wifi signals are also causing a similar effect to that of cell phones, however there needs to be more research vested in discovering a possible link. Certainly, the technologically changes our world is going, the growth of the telecommunications infrastructure around the world, reaching out to almost every corner of the world, would probably be the most favored and most common sense explanation to why bees are dying. If this were to be case, perhaps we are looking a doomed future for bees, as the there is not stopping for the growth of cell phones. We have already reach 1 billion cell phones last year, certainly 2014 will not be a year that halts this trend, in fact we will see more, so if cell phones and wifi were to be the cause, we will have to say good bye to some many of our precious foods, making our lives not only less enjoyable, but also lacking from the properties these foods provide for our bodies and overall health, therefore the bee situation is severe and more studies are needed for us to understand what is happening. It will be very troublesome, as it is the case with many products that hold an economical interest to be able to really do something about it, because if it is indeed cell phones who are causing this and we have a company like Apple that is now the most valued company on the planet, largely thanks to the success of the iPhones, who is to say there will not be opposition to not have cell phones or to force companies to develop a workaround to cell phone towers, is this even possible? Sources: http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/PCWorld/story?id=3580850 http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/honey-bees-dying-scientists-suspect-pesticides-disease-worry/story?id=10191391 http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2012/jun/07/honey-bees-virus-varrora-destructor-mites# http://rt.com/news/bees-pesticides-pollen-study-553/ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1385907/Why-mobile-phone-ring-make-bees-buzz-Insects-infuriated-handset-signals.html http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2011/05/13/cell-phones-caused-mysterious-worldwide-bee-deaths-study-finds/