Video and paper from group n° 047
The topic we have decided to explore is the following :
We are currently losing bees at an alarming rate. The issue is that they are critical pollinators. Without them we can lose all the plants that bees pollinate as well as all the animals that eat those plants. It would be harder to support the need of 7 billion human being. How can we face this issue in a sustainable and ecological way ?
Saving humanity by saving bees ?
Let’s tackle more deeply our project issue: the bees’ disappearance. We started wondering why such huge number of bees were ding every year and what the consequences on the human beings life were. We did a lot of researches and we met an ANSES (Agence nationale de sécurité sanitaire de l’alimentation, de l’environnement et du travail) expert in Sophia Antipolis. From where we started until now, we learned a lot of things. First of all, there are many causes of bees’ disappearance but the most important remains the Varroa destructor; an external parasite that attacks the honey bees’ organism by sticking on the bees’ body and sucking its hemolymph. As honey bees live always in colonies, bees which are infected will pass the acarid to other bees and so the Varroa destructor will manage to kill full colonies of bees. Indeed, the acarid will reproduce himself in the bees’ body, weakening the bees and avoiding them to survive. Moreover, a lot of countries started to study the bees’disparrence and noticed that usually the colonies death ratio were higher in cold countries. No definitive solutions but only temporary have been found as the oxalic acid in order to decrease the Varroa pressure and extend the infected bees’ lifespan.
It is useful to remember that thanks to the bees human lives and enjoy many advantages. Early humans became aware of their interest in protecting or harboring or raise and even more simply to observe bees. Besides their ecosystem functions, bees have an important economic function. Indeed, substances produced by some bees - beeswax, propolis, royal jelly, honey of different plants and even their poison - have ancestral reputation for excellent health. These are obviously domesticated honey bees which are the best purveyors. In case of lack of pollinators, several direct consequences can be listed. First, crop yields for our diet would be greatly diminished. It is estimated that insect pollination contributes to 75% yield of major crops. This would lead to a rise in prices of fruits and vegetables. Second, the number of professional beekeepers would drop and the economy related to the sale of products from the hive. Third, the increase in prices of fruits and vegetables due to lack of pollinators could increase the tendency to under-consumption of these products, particularly for social groups with low-income.
It is time to understand the value and importance of bees in our current society. Therefore, it is our duty to protect bees, if we want to continue to live in a healthy world. It is time to react !