[NEWS] Ethanol to Blame for Bee Colony Collapse?
– by Kaysey Price, September 11, 2016, Inforum
“I like to listen to them in the winter to make sure they’re OK, and there was no sound,” said beekeeper Dotz Johnson, referring to her three bee colonies, which have sat about 30 feet from her rural Detroit Lakes home for the last 40 years. “And when I opened them up in the spring, there weren’t any dead bees. There weren’t any live bees. They were just gone.”
Last year, Johnson experienced “colony collapse,” a phenomenon that occurs when the majority of worker bees disappear and leave behind a queen, plenty of food and a few nurse bees to care for the remaining immature bees and the queen, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. The phenomenon has been all too common for beekeepers in recent years, whether they’re commercial or local. And the cause? Unknown.
But recently, a study conducted by the United States Geological Survey has revealed that the increased use of land for biofuels, corn and soybeans, is essentially taking away food for the bees, by taking away land for the wildflowers and other plants they pollinate with. The logic to follow being that increasing biofuel crop land is a contributing factor causing colony collapse.