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Pollen can carry disease to native bees

While studying pesticides in pollen, I was always curious about the potential for pollen to carry disease organisms as well. Indeed, a new study that appeared in the December 22 PLoS ONE confirmed my worst fears—that pollen may be a major route of viral infection from managed honey bees to wild native bees. The authors […] Read more

National Honey Bee Awareness Day

Today, Saturday August 21, is National Honey Bee Awareness Day. I read somewhere that the goal of this day is to “promote and advance beekeeping, to educate the public about honey bees and beekeeping, and to engage the public in related environmental concerns.” It’s these “related environmental concerns” that are most troubling, and it will […] Read more

But bees did just fine without us for millions of years . . .

I frequently hear this argument for the “do nothing” form of beekeeping. Unfortunately, it is not a logical argument. For starters, bees did manage just fine without us for millions of years, but now they have “us” and that’s the problem. With “us” came pesticides, air pollution, contaminated water, habitat destruction, climate change, freeways, monocultures, […] Read more