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Friday, November 21, 2008

Colony Collapse Disorder and cow Urine?

Trying to imagine a world without bees is not an easy task. Sure you wouldn’t have them buzzing around every time you ate lunch outside and your kids would be safe from painful stings during summer adventures but would we really notice if they went missing?

Would it really affect your life if tomorrow you woke up, turned on the news and realized that all the bees had just disappeared?

The answer is yes. Your life would be drastically affected if they were to disappear.

Considering that bees are responsible for about 30% of the food supply in the U.S. alone, I’d say that we depend on them more than one might realize.

The honeybee population has dropped by half over the last 50 years. While many are baffled by the incredible decrease, others contribute it mainly to mites and pesticides.

Not only would we lose fruits and vegetables that the honeybee pollinates but the Leafcutter bee and Alkali bee, which pollinate alfalfa, are also in danger. This poses a major threat to the meat supply.
A New Hope For The Bee Population?

There have been recent reports out of India about the use of cow urine to control microbial diseases in bee larva. Yes, you read that correctly. Researchers have been spraying the eggs with cow urine, which not only controls microbial disease during the rearing processes but also makes the colony work more efficiently by removing the unhealthy larva. The cow urine seems to be an efficient, safe alternative to the medicines that are currently used to treat microbial disease.

While this sounds a little unconventional for many, it could be a major step in helping increase the honeybee population.