“We’re very close to the breaking point of what’s enough and what’s not enough. Honey bees are not healthy.” - Jerry Hayes, President, Apiary Inspectors of America
"Western honey bees, or European honey bees (Apis mellifera), are still weak, unhealthy and continue to disappear in massive numbers since Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) was identified in the fall of 2006. At least one-third of all the commercial honey bee colonies in the United States and United Kingdom have collapsed as of 2008. There might not be enough pollinators for the 2009 season, forcing food growers to seek out other pollinators in Australia, Argentina and perhaps even the Africanized bees based in Mexico that have spread north into the southern United States."
- Linda Moulton Howe (2008)
If you're not worried yet, you should be. Bees make honey. But they need flowers to do so. When the flowers are treated with pesticides, the bees don't die immediately, but their memory is disrupted. That means they can't find their way back to their hives, or to the flowers, and ultimately, they die. Which means flowers don't get pollinated, and fruits and vegetables don't get produced.
Maybe you've noticed this phenomenon in your garden. Everyone I know who had a garden this summer complained about low tomato yields and withered cucumberless cucumber vines. There was plenty of clement weather, lots of hot sun and optimal rain. Something is missing from this picture: the bees.
Read about the plight of honeybees and your future here.