Urban Farming in Boston (Hens and Honeybees); Growing Rice in New York City; Growing Lettuce Indoors in Japan; Goats Evicted in Detroit.
Your farmers market honey, you have no idea. '“Those universes are so separate,” Barry continued, “that you could go to a hobby bee-keeping meeting and mention commercial bee-keeping, and they’ll say, well, we just don’t have any commercial bee-keeping in North Carolina. They don’t even know those guys exist. They’re completely different worlds.” He paused. Then he added, “And they hate each other.”' [more inside]
"Did you put any thought into this?" - Using their bare hands, two guys carefully move a swarming colony of placid honey bees. [more inside]
Honeybees are responsible for pollinating 1/3 of all our food crops, and represent 80% of all insect pollination. But honeybees have been dying off in huge numbers in the last few years. We've discussed Colony Collapse Disorder here before, but now scientists may have found the cause.
Bees have different “personalities”, with some showing a stronger willingness or desire to seek adventure than others, according to a study by entomologists at the University of Illinois.
Honeybees are very important players in our web-o-life; 80% of modern crop pollination depends on them. For the last 4 or 5 years, however, they have been dying off in huge numbers from an affliction known as Colony Collapse Disorder. After much fretting and hard work, scientists may have found a cure.
The mystery of the disappearing bees might not be much of a problem. That is if commercial bee keepers go organic. (previously 1,2)
Killered Bees. The NYTimes covers the mysterious collapse of commercial honeybee colonies over the last 5-months, covering dozens of states. The disease, Colony Collapse Disorder, does not have a determined cause. The Canary Database indicates that bees can serve as "canaries in a coalmine" for human diseases, as many other animals do. Some of the suspected causative agents (as reported [pdf] by Penn State) include a immunodeficiency, the hive consumption of high-fructose corn syrup, nutritional stress, parasites, infectious diseases, stress due to colony splitting and relocation, insecticides, and antibiotic use. The die-offs are likely to adversely impact both prices and crop yields.