Queen of the World: Part II
Will mankind really perish if the honeybee perishes? I’ve done some research to try to get to the bottom of this.
The honeybee populations have declined 80% in some areas of the United States and Europe. One of the main causes of this is Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). However, the bees don’t usually die in the hive from colony collapse disorder. Studies show that they lose their orientation and cannot return home. The bees that remain in the hive show signs that their immune systems have collapsed. Environmental organizations believe that stress is a factor, but they really don’t know. They have focused their studies on environmental stress, bee management stress, parasites, pathogens and fungus as possible reasons for CCD. I believe they need to take a much closer look at the genetically modified crops.
Professor Hans-Heinrich Kaatz, at the University of Halle in East Germany, found that a certain genetically modified corn has a bacterial toxin that alters the surface of the honeybees intestines. Apparently his funding was taken away before he could investigate it any further.
The best thing we can do for the bees in our yards is avoid pesticides. My bees in the above picture are dead and I think it was because they got into poison somewhere in my neighborhood.
There is a quote floating around from Albert Einstein that states, “if the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe man would only have four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man”. I am unable to find proof that Einstein actually said this.
I don’t know if humans would cease to exist without honeybees because I can’t wrap my mind around that concept. I’m not very good at writing science fiction. However, I do believe it would be an epic ecological disaster and would probably have a negative impact on the human population. I can’t help but play out a Mad Max scene in my head.
Bees do play a vital role in keeping our ecosystem in balance and are absolutely necessary for our food supply. Would humans be able to find food without them?
There are many risks to humans and planet earth. Check out Wikipedia’s Risks to Civilization website for all the ways civilization could meet its demise. For now, I just hope that we can raise our youth with the tools they will need to find the solutions to the challenges that are ahead.
Come grow with us!