The new falcon herald logo.
Feature Articles

BEE kind

The Center for Research on Globalization referred to the loss of the honeybee population as the ìbiggest foreboding danger of all facing humans.î The March 7 article, ìDeath and Extinction of the Beesî by Joachim Hagopian, carried a daunting message. ìSince no other single animal species plays a more significant role in producing the fruits and vegetables … that humans commonly take for granted … Albert Einstein once prophetically remarked, ëMankind will not survive the honeybeesí disappearance for more than five years.íîThe article cited a statistic from Tom Vilsack, secretary of the United States Department of Agriculture: ìMore than 130 fruits and vegetables that make up a nutritious diet are cross pollinated by honeybees.îìCommercial bees raised on farms and shipped to other farms in the country for pollination purposes, along with wild bees, are responsible for pollination of an estimated 80 percent of all food crops in the United States,î the article states.ìEvery third bite a human eats is the result of bees and other pollinators.îIn his article, Hagopian writes that a new government study blames a number of factors for the beesí demise: increased use of pesticides, especially in the U.S.; shrinking habitats; a myriad of viruses; poor nutrition and genetics and even cell phone towers. One major parasite called the Varroa is a mite that is resistant to insecticides beekeepers have used to control the mites inside the beehive. And insecticides developed to combat Varroa have proven harmful and even deadly to the bees.A change in weather patterns has affected the honeybee population as well. For example, harsh winters in Iowa have destroyed the honeybee population by up to 70 percent. Drought in California has decreased Californiaís production of honey by almost half in the past six years. The Dakotas, Montana, Minnesota, Florida, the Midwest are top producers of honey, and all are seeing dwindling numbers of bees. ìIn the last half decade alone, 30 percent of the national bee population has disappeared and nearly a third of all bee colonies in the U.S. have perished,î wrote Hagopian. The rate of depopulation is growing; last year, commercial bees that died last year added up to 42 percent more than the previous year. The monetary loss is estimated at $30 billion a year.The USDA is providing $3 million in subsidies to persuade Midwest dairy farmers and cattle ranchers to reseed their fields with eco-friendly crops like alfalfa and clover for healthier bee habitats. The agriculture industry has increased profits by planting corn and soybeans, instead of the richer types of crops.Also, fewer wildflower fields and shrinking natural land space in America have a part to play in the loss of bee habitats.

StratusIQ Fiber Internet Falcon Advertisement

Current Weather

Weather Cams by StratusIQ

Search Advertisers