Hope For the Future – Super Bees Could Save Us

Bee pollinating squash

Bees at work - not just the honeybees help pollinate

All of us who garden or farm are concerned about the death of honeybees, but many who do not get their hands in the dirt regularly don’t realize how crucial these insects are to our survival.

Viruses and mites have, according to the U.N., killed  85% of bees in the Middle East, 10% to 30% of bees in Europe and nearly a third of American bees each year. This is a big deal–over 70 of the 100 crops that provide 90% of the world’s food are pollinated by bees (that’s $83 billion worth of crops).

Fortunately their does seem to be some hope on the horizon according to this article at Fast Company

So researchers at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg have started to ship queen bees from hives that exhibit some resistance to mites across Canada, where they are exposed to “disease pressure.” Each generation of survivors is bred for the next season, the theory being that eventually a mite-resistant brand of bees will emerge.  Read the entire article

Of course as the article suggests this will not solve the problem unless we address issues like pesticide use which many believe also contributes to the widespread death of bees

The world honey bee population has plunged in recent years, worrying beekeepers and farmers who know how critical bee pollination is for many crops. A number of theories have popped up as to why the North American honey bee population has declined–electromagnetic radiation, malnutrition, and climate change have all been pinpointed. Now a leaked EPA document reveals that the agency allowed the widespread use of a bee-toxic pesticide, despite warnings from EPA scientists.  read the rest of this concerning article

Once again I wonder – should bee preservation be a part of our Christian responsibility as we care for God’s good creation?  What do you think?

2 Responses

  1. I just got a video on bees to share with our kids as part of our homeschool lessons and was amazed to learn how vital and widespread their role is in farming. I think prayer and taking appropriate conservations steps to preserve this creature is crucial. What’s funny is the disconnect so many people will have with this issue.

    If you were to tell most people – all the fruit trees and vegetables will be gone soon, everyone will rush to do something about it. But if it is that the bees who pollinate those plants so they can bear fruits or vegetables will be gone soon, a lot more convincing has to be done to create any action.

  2. I don’t think we will really understand the impact of this until it affects us personally – either by us growing our own trees & waiting anxiously for the bees to pollinate them or by the price of fruit skyrocketing because there are no bees to pollinate the trees and so no fruit in the stores

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