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Thread: Scientists and Soldiers Solve a Bee Mystery

  1. #1
    Senior Member rdf's Avatar
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    Scientists and Soldiers Solve a Bee Mystery

    Scientists and Soldiers Solve a Bee Mystery

    It has been one of the great murder mysteries of the garden: what is killing off the honeybees?

    Since 2006, 20 to 40 percent of the bee colonies in the United States alone have suffered “colony collapse.” Suspected culprits ranged from pesticides to genetically modified food.

    Now, a unique partnership — of military scientists and entomologists — appears to have achieved a major breakthrough: identifying a new suspect, or two.

    A fungus tag-teaming with a virus have apparently interacted to cause the problem, according to a paper by Army scientists in Maryland and bee experts in Montana in the online science journal PLoS One.

    Exactly how that combination kills bees remains uncertain, the scientists said — a subject for the next round of research. But there are solid clues: both the virus and the fungus proliferate in cool, damp weather, and both do their dirty work in the bee gut, suggesting that insect nutrition is somehow compromised.
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    Senior Member DaleB's Avatar
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    I wish they would have addressed the 2 main symptoms of colony collapse disorder. A near complete absence of dead bees plus no remaining adults (only queen, brood, plenty of pollen and honey left) are the indicators of CCD. Large numbers of dead, diseased bees is not CCD, as defined by EPA and industry stake holders. Nice research, but if they are finding dead bees the mystery remains.
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