Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Bee-ware: Where have all the bees gone?

Heard of something called "colony collapse"? No, it's not in reference to the recent bank issues. It's something almost as serious: Bees! They're dying off in unprecedented numbers, and scientists don't know why.

Sure, bees are annoying when they sting (and sometimes deadly, if you're one of those allergic people). But right now, most of our crops are pollinated by bees... and what does pollination do, boys and girls? It makes sure the fruit/vegetable plant has both halves of the genetic information it needs to create more of itself.

Without bees we would have to walk around to all the flowering plants and use Q-tips to do the pollination for over 1/3 of all the crops that we eat... not to mention that without bees, we wouldn't have that delicious and au-natural sweetener - honey!

To learn more about the problem (and play a little with their Flash interface), visit the Help the Honey Bees site from Hagen Daaz. For more scholarly information, read this article from a Penn State researcher about what's killing the honey bees, or explore the UC Davis Honey Bee Research facility's website.

Related Posts: A Creeping Problem; Farm Aid; Find local food locally; CSAs Rock; Harvest Calendar for MA; Staycation in Boston; Fruit in the City; Jamming the Local Way
Bee avatar created on the Hagen Daaz site.

No comments: