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Ashotep

World agriculture suffers

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Pollinating insects usually live in natural or semi-natural habitats, such as the edges of forests, hedgerows or grasslands.

These habitats are gradually being lost as the land is cultivated for agriculture, but, as a result, the abundance and diversity of wild pollinators crucial for the crops’ success is declining.

World agriculture suffers from lack of wild bees

We clear more land to feed more people but the bees won't be there to pollinate it. So how will we feed people when the population hits 10 billion?

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Posted (edited)

The very reason (or rather, one of the reasons) I have established more than 10 acres of 'set-aside' land on the farm, half of which is beech woodland, and the other half wild meadow. Also, I have (with financial help from Defra) reconstructed or re-established 18 miles of hedgerow, with more to follow, (hopefully). Brian Creasy on the other side of the village has an apiary, and his bees romp around my meadows all summer! Lots of butterflies too (although they aren't much good at producing honey!)

Mine's only a small effort in the general scheme of things, but it's something I feel everybody who has the facilities to do so should do.

Edited by ealdwita
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I have a tree hive currently and am going to a crack at catching a swarm or two over the next couple months. Bees are wonderful and honey is tasty. We need to take care of the honeybees and give them a helping hand not Africanize Bee the world.

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In the article they claim the bee's kept by bee keepers don't do as well at pollinating. Don't understand why they wouldn't.

Managed populations of pollinators are less effective at fertilizing plants than wild ones, the researchers said, so the dearth of pollinating insects cannot be solved by simply introducing others.

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In the article they claim the bee's kept by bee keepers don't do as well at pollinating. Don't understand why they wouldn't.

According to Brian (I've just phoned him), wild bees are more efficient pollinators because they visit a wider spectrum of 'cultivars' (I expect he means flowers and things) than hive bees who tend to be stuck in their ways, visiting the same old plants time after time, thus not pollinating properly. Also, the presence of wild bees makes hive bees nervous and has the effect of forcing them to pollinate further afield. (If that's rubbish - blame Brian!)

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In the article they claim the bee's kept by bee keepers don't do as well at pollinating. Don't understand why they wouldn't.

Honeybees are very effected by whats in the environment IMO. Hey Bees are like people they dont like working 80 hour weeks. They would be a "canary" so to speak. The fact "we" dont take this threat very seriously is beyond me

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The very reason (or rather, one of the reasons) I have established more than 10 acres of 'set-aside' land on the farm, half of which is beech woodland, and the other half wild meadow. Also, I have (with financial help from Defra) reconstructed or re-established 18 miles of hedgerow, with more to follow, (hopefully). Brian Creasy on the other side of the village has an apiary, and his bees romp around my meadows all summer! Lots of butterflies too (although they aren't much good at producing honey!)

Mine's only a small effort in the general scheme of things, but it's something I feel everybody who has the facilities to do so should do.

Brian Creasy? Is that the one in Horley, Bristol, or Rotherham?

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It may have something to do with how a lot of domestic bees are treated vs wild bees. Wild bees forage all over the place and are free to do so. Most commercial bees are taken from farm to farm as needed for pollination, and moving them around that much isn't supposed to be good for them, and I have to imagine the more restricted diet might not be so good for them either.

We may be getting our first hive this year with the help of a neighbor. He's been doing beekeeping for a few years now and has agreed to help me out. He's an all natural guy that uses local wild swarms. We do have a decent variety of wild pollinators, but I just love honeybees.

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Posted (edited)

Non tempermental hives are the best to grab swarms from. Genetics. By letting the less temperamental Hives thrive (with luck) and live in as natural a state as possible is best for the bees.

What if anything do to stop the spread of Africanized Bees ? There a threat because of there aggressive nature.

Edited by AsteroidX
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Non tempermental hives are the best to grab swarms from. Genetics. By letting the less temperamental Hives thrive (with luck) and live in as natural a state as possible is best for the bees.

What if anything do to stop the spread of Africanized Bees ? There a threat because of there aggressive nature.

Instead of relying on industrial pollination and micromanaging the numerous problems and inefficiencies therein, maybe we should address the problem causing the decline in wild bees instead? It's a self-defeating problem otherwise.

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Brian Creasy? Is that the one in Horley, Bristol, or Rotherham?

Our Brian doesn't get much further afield than the pub these days!

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Africanized bees and mites have been 2 huge destroyer of natural and "hived" nests. In regions where Africanized bees take hold it is not long before Natural Honeybees dissapear so there DOES lie a huge problem. Nearly the lower USA down through South America has been completely wiped out bu this failed experiment. (But hey GMO is a great idea-jab for those that care). And yes industrialized bees is not good. But they are often used in areas where Africanized Bees are prevalent and therefore cant be left to fend for themselves.

IMO once we tackle the Africanized Bee problem (there nonindeginous and crossbred) then we can reintroduce the honeybee and it will do well. I dont see this as a chicken or the egg first problem. The problem is staring straight at us but again what are we doing to stop the spread ? Honeybees dont have a chance till we get a stop on these Africanized species. How much funding goes to working this problem out.

Honeybees are so vital to our ecosystems yet we treat them like they are always going to be there. They wont at the rate things are going. They are delicate pollinaters.

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Africanized honey bees are hot-weather bees. They'll hopefully be stopped by the climate. How are we to tackle them otherwise? That's not really at issue here regarding the shortage of wild pollinators anyway. It's more a qualitative difference in selective bee populations than a cause of global shortage.

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How are we to tackle them otherwise?

We experimented with mother nature and the Africanized Bee was the result. I see them as a part of the problem with wild pollinators because they displaced the natural pollinator. The Honeybee. It is akin to the Pythons of the Everglades. Native species will dissapear and new aggressive invasive species replaces them.

You cannot replace the native species while the invasive one exists. A solution. No I dont have one and I dont get paid to come up with solutions so I will offer none here. I only hope your cold climate keeps them off my doorstep. Its just an ignored environmental problem like so many others. But our selfishness has left us heartless to the importance of Honeybees a pollinator and producer for many cultures over the centuries. yet we our masterful intelligent selves choose to ignore it.

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We experimented with mother nature and the Africanized Bee was the result. I see them as a part of the problem with wild pollinators because they displaced the natural pollinator. The Honeybee. It is akin to the Pythons of the Everglades. Native species will dissapear and new aggressive invasive species replaces them.

You cannot replace the native species while the invasive one exists. A solution. No I dont have one and I dont get paid to come up with solutions so I will offer none here. I only hope your cold climate keeps them off my doorstep. Its just an ignored environmental problem like so many others. But our selfishness has left us heartless to the importance of Honeybees a pollinator and producer for many cultures over the centuries. yet we our masterful intelligent selves choose to ignore it.

Africanized bees are honeybees. They're just more aggressive. The species swapping you speak of won't cause agriculture to suffer due to lack of pollination. The problems are aggressive bees with behaviors that aren't conducive to happy outdoor living, or other bees.

Global warming will worsen the problem by making colder climates push further north, so I think the solutions are far more convoluted than we know, addressing a problem of this scale. The common thread in all of them though is that they all point back to us and either what we've done or what we're doing, or not doing.

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I hear you but theres a negative caveat to Africanized Honeybees

PUBLICATION

8068

UNIVERSITY OF

CALIFORNIA

Agriculture

and Natural Resources

http://anrcatalog.ucdavis.edu

BEE ALERT

Africanized Honey Bee Facts

VINCENT LAZANEO,

University of California Cooperative Extension Urban Horticulture

and Pest Management Advisor, San Diego County

BEE PREPARED

A

fricanized honey bees (AHB)—also called “killer bees”—became established in Texas in

1990 and are spreading to other southern states. AHB entered southern California in

1994 and are now established throughout southern California and in the southern

end of the San Joaquin Valley. Although its “killer” reputation has been greatly exag-

gerated, the presence of AHB will increase the chances of people being stung.

Learning about AHB and taking certain precautions can lower the risk of being

injured by this new insect in our environment.

The Africanized honey bee is closely related to the European honey bee used in

agriculture for crop pollination and honey production. The two types of bees look the

same and their behavior is similar in many respects. Neither is likely to sting when

gathering nectar and pollen from flowers, but both will sting in defense if provoked.

A swarm of bees in flight or briefly at rest seldom bothers people. However, all bees

become defensive when they settle and begin producing wax comb and raising young.

AFRICANIZED

AND

EUROPEAN HONEY BEES

• Look the same

• Protect their nest and sting in defense

• Can sting only once

• Have the same venom

• Pollinate flowers

• Produce honey and wax

Africanized honey bees are less predictable and more defensive than European

honey bees. They are more likely to defend a greater area around their nest. They

respond faster in greater numbers, although each bee can sting only once.

AFRICANIZED HONEY BEES

• Respond quickly and sting in large numbers

• Can sense a threat from people or animals 50 feet or more from nest

• Sense vibrations from power equipment 100 feet or more from nest

• Will pursue an enemy

1

4

mile or more

• Swarm frequently to establish new nests

• Nest in small cavities and sheltered areas

AHB nest in many locations where people may encounter

them. Nesting sites include: empty boxes, cans, buckets

or other containers; old tires; infrequently used vehicles; lumber piles; holes

and cavities in fences, trees, or the ground; sheds, garages, and other outbuildings;

and low decks or spaces under buildings.

Remove potential nest sites around buildings.

Be careful wherever bees may be found.

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