Bumblebees are becoming extinct. In the last twenty years bumblebees have declined 96 percent. Not only are bumblebees becoming extinct, so are honey bees and solitary bees. Bees pollinate more than 235,000 species of plants on the Earth, without them we will become a starving population. The EPA has allowed the use of a toxic insecticide called Clothianidin that is killing off bees that pollinate our crops.
Bees Are in Trouble
Never, ever kill a bee, including bumblebees, honeybees and solitary bees. They are not expendable. We have over 20,000 species of bees and they are crucial for pollinating more than 235,000 species of plants on earth. Bees pollinate more than 110 crops that feed almost 7 billion people. Bees are in trouble. A three year study by the University of Illinois has documented four species of U.S. bees declining by up to 96 percent within the last twenty years.
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In the U.K.,the news is especially distressing. Three species of bumblebees are already extinct, and the other species have been in a serious decline since the 1970s. It’s been found that bees have a low resistance to disease and they have less than a fighting chance against any new pathogens. Even worse, a 17 year study in the Rocky Mountains found global warming is melting snowpacks three weeks earlier, causing glacier lilies to come out weeks sooner. The problem is bees that pollinate the lilies are waking up too late. The survival of the lilies are in question.
All bee species are sensitive to the toxic insecticide Clothianidin, a recent addition to the family of potent synthetic chemicals called neonictinoids.The Environmental Protection Agency allows use of it despite the fact that the scientific study allowing it was flawed. Environmentalists and bee keepers have called on the EPA to recall this toxic insecticide from use. It is linked to the death of billions of bees around the world. Millions of people have signed the AVAAZ.org online petition to outlaw the use of neonictinoids in the U.S. and throughout Europe.
To name a few crops that bumblebees are crucial for pollination, peas, lentils, canola, rape, sunflowers, cranberries, tomatoes, blueberries, chilis, alfalfa, and red clover. Bumblebees large size, long tongues and high frequency buzz helps release pollen from the flower. They are tireless workers who work from dawn to dark. About 19,000 flowering plants on Earth rely on bumblebees to reproduce.
Research at Queen Mary University in London show that bumblebees in the U.K. can find the answer to complex math problems that keep computers busy for days. Their brains are small but bumblebees can find the shortest distance between nectar and pollen patch. It settles the problem of how to service all locations on route.
It’s a wake up call for all nations. Without bumblebees and other bees ,we could not grow enough food to feed the population. The result would be a starving world. We should all pitch in and call our Representatives, and do everything in our power to see that toxic chemicals are banned.
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