Saturday, June 3, 2023

Whatever Happened to Bees?

Environmental & Science Education, STEM, Nature, Wildlife, Biodiversity, Sustainability

Ed Hessler

Bees are the subject of theoretical physicist Sabine Hossenfelder in a post about the bee apocalypse. She wonders whatever happened to it. 

You will recall, she writes that "15 years ago, dying bees were all over the news. Scientists called it the 'colony collapse disorder', headlines were warning of honey bees going extinct. Some suspected a virus, some pesticides, parasites, or a fungus. They spoke of a 'honeybee apocalypse;, a 'beepocalypse'. a 'bee murder mystery' and the 'head scratching case of the vanishing bees', which are all names of movies I wouldn't watch." Hossenfelder also says "the boring truth is that the honey bees are doing fine."

So Hossenfelder digs in with a short review of the past, causes, "cures",  the demand for pollinators in agriculture and what she regards as "the actual problem."

I include a couple of quotes  so that you can get on to the real business of reading/viewing this thoughtful piece of writing.

The first provides a much needed perspective on science. "If all this sounds really complicated, that’s indeed the major message. Forget about quantum gravity: ecological systems are way more complex. There’s so many things going on that we never had a chance to properly study in the first place, so we have no idea what’s happening now."

The second is on how to help, another useful perspective. "So if you want to help the bees, don’t buy a bee hive. The honeybees are not at risk exactly because you can buy them. What’s at risk are natural resources that we exploit but that we haven’t put a price on. Like clean air, rain, or wild bees. If you have a garden, you can help the wild bees by preserving the variety of native flowers. Quite literally, let a thousand flowers bloom."

Here it is on Backreaction which I think will include the text and a link which doesn't to the YouTube video. 

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