Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Clues in the honeybee mystery begin to come to light

The mystery of the missing honeybees is still providing new clues and insights. After the mass media rush to cover the story, more curious information has come to light. To read more of my posts on the missing honeybee mystery, click this link and you will find all of my posts which include links to news and industry websites that provide a wealth of information on this story that go far beyond what you saw on the evening news or on cable TV.

While browsing for new stories on the missing honeybee mystery I found an extremely interesting comment from a representative of the Michigan Beekeepers Association who blames the colony collapse on bee food,

“The high-fructose corn syrup these commercial guys are feeding their honeybees
is made from genetically modified corn, which is made to hurt insects."
This is quite a significant statement. We have all been reading for years about the dangers and health threat that high fructose corn syrup can be to human health. The introduction of GM corn syrup into the colony collapse mystery is quite an eye opener for me and one I had not thought of.

We need to pay a lot of attention to farmers and small agri-businessmen such as this beekeeper. Their concerns and wisdom about such things are based on real world experience and the necessity of sustaining a long and healthy means of earning a living. Big agribusiness concerns such as ConAgra and Monsanto are only concerned with the bottom line and getting away with as much as possible. If the land is left barren, they could actually care less as long as they are able to maximize their profits before the last seed goes to waste.

In this article from the St. Cloud Times in Minnesota, an associate professor at the University of Minnesota in St. Paul thinks the crisis is over in their state and that things have stabilized. Several comments in the article from beekeepers in Minnesota give two interesting points of view. One beekeeper said he was certain the cause of the collapse was mites, tracheal mites to be exact, while another stated that he has noticed the situation seems to have only effected commercial beekeepers and not the hobbyist. Once again, these comments concern what these beekeepers have seen in their state and do not reflect what has happened worldwide.

To add to this theory that commercial beekeepers are being hit the hardest, this article has several comments from organic beekeepers who say their colonies were not at all effected by the crisis. I think it would be very interesting to see some statistics on this once the USDA get’s through investigating it, if they will provide the public with a good scientific report without bias, I should add. If we could see a good survey of the number of hives that were effected, broken down by sector (local commercial, interstate commercial, hobbyist, etc..) and methodology of maintaining livestock (fructose corn syrup based feed, organic, etc..) we could probably see some very clear cut facts arise.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the great articles and links about the bees disappearance! It's become really hard to sift through the multitude of theories, and it's nice to see it all in one place.

I've been working to raise money for research on the bees by selling tshirts. Check it out if you'd like to help!


The CT blogger said...

Thanks for your comments. This subject seems to maintain quite a lot of interest, even with the passage of time. Sorting through various news sources and finding new information is always a challenge, regardless of the subject. That is the reason why I have postings which roundup news stories about various subjects and post them all together. Keep coming back!

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