Summary : ' Bee Disappearance '

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Madison Manchester Mrs. Kopcak English 12 8 May 2016 Senior Paper: Bee Disappearance Seven years ago honeybee colonies were reported to be dying en masse. They were dying from multiple causes, and these bee disappearances reflect an infertile landscape and a dysfunctional food system. The problem is that in the last 50 years bees have been dying and we’re planting more crops that require bees pollination. Colony Collapse Disorder, Varroa mites, and our farming practices attribute to these disappearances of our most important pollinator, bees. Bees provide us with pollination services for our agricultural crops. “Bees are the most important pollinators of our fruits and vegetables and flowers and crops like alfalfa hay that we feed our farm animals.” (Spivak) We rely on them so much that more than one-third of the world’s crop production is dependent on bee pollination. Without bees we wouldn’t have specialty crops like: asparagus, cantaloupes, cucumbers, pumpkins, cherries and blueberries. We also rely on the bee’s honey, “Made by bees regurgitating nectar and passing it back and forth in their mouths to one another before depositing and sealing it in a honeycomb, it’s intended use is for the bee’s winter food stores.” (Tucker) Honey is also valued in our economy, “Humans are quite fond of this amber liquid as well- the 2013 honey crop was valued at $317.1 million.” (Tucker) We need bees for their economic value just as much as we need their pollination for our crops. Honey

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