Disease in Honeybees A Contributor to Decline in Wild Bees
The honeybee epidemic that has stumped scientists in the recent years seems to have no end in sight as wild bees continue to drop dramatically in number.
The cause of the population decline in the bees has been associated with multiple theories but has not pinpointed a specific cause. Currently, the syndrome has been tied to increased use of pesticides, bee exterminations, climate change, and the ubiquity of cell phones (electromagnetic radiation). However, no concrete evidence exists that singles out the sole contributor to CCD. Many believe that it is a combination of all the above factors
Now, researchers are conducting test for five viruses that have been found in bees and pollen. Apiaries in three cities were tested. The results found that Israeli acute parasitic virus was found in the wild bees near the infected apiaries but not found in wild bees near non-infected apiaries.
Further investigations are finding out what effects the viruses cause to our pollinating insects.
The most interesting finding so far is the detection of deformed-wing virus and sacbrood virus in bee pollen but not in the foraging bees carrying the pollen. Thus, concluding that pollen can transmit viral infections.
This finding raises concern of possible virus transmission with the honeybee-collected pollen used to feed bumblebees in bee-raising operations worldwide.
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