Little Bee, Big Impact

1987 Words8 Pages
Little Bee, Big Impact Laura Matthews Rogue Community College ABSTRACT This essay presents the global issue of the massive decline of the population of honey bees. The significance of this essay is to raise awareness of this potentially detrimental environmental concern. Sources including the United States Department of Agriculture and the Environmental Protection Agency show that even though no cause has yet been determined it is vital that a solution be found. Honey bees have been referred to as biological indicators, meaning that their status is a reflection of the general environmental health of the planet as a whole. Little bee, big impact Imagine a world without fresh fruits, veggies, and nuts; strawberry shortcake wouldn’t exist and a slice of juicy watermelon on a hot summer day would be only a memory. Humans are closer to this reality than most know. With the advent of 1980’s, the population of honey bees has witnessed a decline in the United States. The two main reasons for such a change are pests and the emergence of new diseases. However, the seasonal number of lost hives has increased significantly in the last few years. This recent spike has a couple red flags; it comes without obvious cause and the honey bees seemingly abandon their hives en masse. Unfortunately, it is not just concentrated to the United States and has become a global issue with Europe and China experiencing the same dramatic drop in honey bee population. Without honey bees, consumers could face challenges with food shortages or the loss of the food entirely. Unknown to most, honey is not the most important measure of a honey bee. Honey production accounts for about $150 million annually (Sass 2011). According to the USDA these little busy bodies pollinate upwards of $15 billion worth of crops in the U.S. alone (Honey). While a few crops, such as corn and wheat, are

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