Simply Nahala

Writer. Photographer. Soul Traveler.

Monday, June 24, 2013

25,000 Dead Bumblebees


Approximately 25,000 dead bumblebees were recently found near a Target in Wilsonville, Oregon. I drove by because it is in my stompin ground and wanted to get some photos. The parking lot is home to 65 European Linden trees, and there was an eerie feel to the area. It felt like being in a mausoleum with all the trees covered in black netting to deter the bumblebees from pollinating. There were dead bees everywhere.

After the die off began, the Oregon Department of Agriculture confirmed that pesticides had recently been sprayed on the trees. How sad! Our birds and bees are the canary in the coal mine. If they are dying off, what does this mean for humans? Bees pollinate the majority of our food supply, and we are getting to a place where we don't have enough bees to pollinate our country's pollination demand. Matter in fact, the U.S. has been importing bees from other countries, which is not sustainable and very stressful for the bees.


This is not an isolated incident. Bees are disappearing or dying worldwide at an alarming rate. The phenomenon has been named Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). The bees are dying from a variety of factors such as pesticides, habitat destruction, fungus, mites, unethical bee keeping practices, electromagnetic radiation, air pollution, ect.

The main culprits to the decline in the bee population are systemic pesticides and loss of habitat. Bee habitats shrink every year as agribusiness converts wild habitats into monoculture farms that are contaminated with pesticides. While the bees extract the pollen from a plant dowsed in pesticides, they often become disoriented and fall off the plant, never making it back to their hive alive.


What can we do?

1. Bee Organic. Buying organic food supports bee friendly environments.
2. Bee A Gardener. Plant a bee-friendly garden that is NOT dowsed with pesticides.
3. Bee Consciencious At Home. Avoid lawn and garden chemicals. Use natural/organic products instead.
4. Bee A Natural Beekeeper. Backyard beekeeping is really hip right now. If you live in the Portland area, check out Ruhl Bee Supply.
5. Bee An Advocate. Spread the word about the rapid decline of bees.

Honoring the Circle of Life,
Jan


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