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CCD and the Disappearing Honey Bees. So, what is CCD?. CCD stands for Colony Collapse Disorder. Hives across the world have been noticing that bees have been abandoning their hives and dying due to unknown causes, so the bee colonies are collapsing.

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CCD and the Disappearing Honey Bees


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Presentation Transcript
slide3

CCD stands for Colony Collapse Disorder. Hives across the world have been noticing that bees have been abandoning their hives and dying due to unknown causes, so the bee colonies are collapsing.

slide5
Yes, you definitely should care that the honeybees are dying out – well, that is, if you care about eating!
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“Pollination by bees is essential to the world’s food supply.” Alfredo Flores, Agricultural Research, February 2008.“What many people fail to realise is that bees play a crucial role in the world’s food chain.” Elizabeth Jensen, Television Week, June 16 2008.

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In other words, if we don’t do something to stop the bees from dying out, the only things we’ll be able to eat are corn, wheat and rice, or corn, wheat and rice-based products. This is because corn, wheat and rice wind pollinate – they don’t rely on bees to pollinate them. Back to my point, that means no fruit, no vegetables, no meat, no nuts, etc. etc. And of course, we could survive by just eating corn, wheat and rice, but we’d lose all the colour and excitement out of our world. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want that to happen!

slide9

Well, to be honest with you, it’s not just the honeybees that are becoming extinct! These pollinators are just part of a world wide problem where we’re losing all our pollinators. But let’s get back to the bees, because they’re getting hit the hardest.

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“It does not appear at this point in time that any one of the known factors could account for CCD because we’ve never seen this magnitude of a loss before.” Gene Robinson, Biologist, [date unknown].

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And that’s a problem because if we don’t know what is causing the problem, just how do we stop the problem?
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“Give me the spots on the apples; leave me the birds and the bees.” Joni Mitchell, Big Yellow Taxi, [no date].
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In other words, don’t use pesticides to get rid of small imperfections (“give me the spots on the apples”) and in doing so, don’t harm all the animals (“leave me the birds and the bees”).

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Well, one of the possible theories is that pesticides are killing the bees off. But there are lots of other theories. These include:
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PERICIDESMALNUTRITIONAN AIDS-LIKE VIRUS SWEEPING THROUGH THE INSECT WORLDCELL PHONE TOWERS AFFECTING THE BEES’ NAVIGATIONFUNGUS OR MITES DRIVING THE BEES AWAYAGRICULTURAL CHEMICALS

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Scientists know that mites, fungus and chemicals all drive the bees away from their hives, and they also know that if a bee is sick, it will abandon the hive to go away and die, instead of infecting the whole hive. And some people think that something could be interfering with the bees’ navigation.

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So all these scientists are working on finding out the cause of this and yet they still haven’t found out why the bees are leaving?
slide22

AKA: Israeli Acute Paralysis Virus. The only problem with this is that IAPV has only ever been found in Israel. So just how did IAPV get into the US from Israel?

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The US had been getting bee imports from Australia so that they had enough bees to pollinate all their crops – basically so that they had enough bees to feed their country. It is believed that the Australian bees brought the virus over as it had never been seen in the US before.

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Well, at the moment, scientists are still working on what else is causing CCD, as they believe that not only IAPV is causing CCD, but something else is too.

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Well, we can say goodbye to our honeybees in 2035. But each country’s rate of CCD will probably be different – some countries’ rates may be really fast (e.g. China – their bees are already gone and the people of China are having to hand pollinate their plants – and this is very impractical and difficult) and some countries’ rates may be really slow (e.g. New Zealand - NZ hasn’t really been hit by CCD yet.