So, shortly after I wrote my post on St. Modomnoc’s Day and the awesomeness that is bees, I stumbled across this report from the BBC that says they’ve now discovered that diseases of domestic honeybees are decimating wild bumblebee populations. Bumblebees–which have what I think may be the most adorable name in the animal kingdom–aren’t doing so hot and one species (Bombus cullumanus) has already gone extinct in much of western Europe.
So now we know for sure that bee populations are negatively affected by:
- diseases and parasites
- loss of habitat
- neonicotinoid pesticides (which impair the bees’ immune systems according to this article)
- maybe a whole bunch of other factors
When I read things like this, I admit I get pretty depressed about it. It feels like I can’t possibly do anyhing to stem the tide. It’s true there are some people we’ll never get through to, but I still believe it’s too soon for those of us who care to give up hope. So spread the word until your friends are sick of you!