Honey Bee Pollination

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Summary of the paper, “Crop Pollination Exposes Honey Bees to Pesticides Which Alters Their Susceptibility to the Gut Pathogen Nosema cerana”, PLOS ONE, July 2013, Volume 8, Issue 7.
Original paper by Jeffery S. Pettis, Elinor M. Lichtenburg, Michael Andree, Jennie Stitzinger, Robyn Rose and Denis vanEngelsdrop.
Summary by Elliot Crane, Biology Lab 1615-024
Honey Bees are one of the most important pollinators of agriculture crops. The recent decline of Honey Bee colonies in North America and Europe and the increasing number of crops needing pollination has caused concern that there will not be an adequate population of pollinators, Honey Bees. A number of factors are thought to contribute to the decline of the honey bee populations including
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After a total of 5 grams of pollen was recovered from each hive, it was dehydrated. Each slide was prepared by combining 2 pellets of ground pollen with 2 ml of water. The slide was then observed under 400X magnification. The results show that the bee colonies collected different amounts of pollen from different crops. All of the pollen collected in the study contained levels of pesticides, insecticides and fungicides, with levels of herbicide showing up in 23.6%. There were seven different categories of insecticides found in the pollen samples. “Of the seven pesticides found in pollen from over half, or at least four, of the crops, the majority were associated with a higher Nosema prevalence in bees that consumed them.” Crop Pollination Exposes Honey Bees to Pesticides Which Alters Their Susceptibility to the Gut Pathogen Nosema cerana, PLOS ONE, July 2013, Volume 8, Issue…show more content…
It means that beekeepers, when placing their hives for pollination, need to consider not only the pesticides used in fields they are working but also the pesticides used in nearby fields. Many of the bees collected very little pollen from the crops they were tasked to pollinate; instead they collected pollen from wildflowers or weeds. “The combination of high pesticide loads and increased Nosema infection rates in bees that consumed greater quantities of fungicides suggest that some fungicides have stronger impacts on bee health than previously thought.” Crop Pollination Exposes Honey Bees to Pesticides Which Alters Their Susceptibility to the Gut Pathogen Nosema cerana, PLOS ONE, July 2013, Volume 8, Issue

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