The Death Of Bees Explained – Parasites, Poison and Humans


Human society is extremely
complex and fragile, built upon various pillars. One of them is the honey bee. One out of three meals eaten by humans
is made possible by honey bees. They are so important that if all the
honey bees were to die out, thousands of plants would follow, which could lead to millions of people
starving in the following years. On top of that, honey bees have
a huge economic impact. The dollar value of plants
pollinated by them each year is around $265 billion. Food we take for granted would just
stop existing without them, or there would be a massive
decrease in productivity. Food including apples, onions, pumpkins,
and also plants used for feeding livestock and thus extremely important
for our milk and meat. Einstein is often quoted as having said, “If honey bees die out, humans
will follow a few years later.” Actually, he probably didn’t say that, but there might be some
truth in the statement. It’s unsettling, but honey bees
have started to disappear. Millions of hives have died
in the last few years. Beekeepers all over the world have seen an
annual loss of 30–90% of their colonies. In the US alone, bees
are steadily declining.>From 5 million hives in 1988
to 2.5 million today. Since 2006, a phenomenon called
“colony collapse disorder” has affected honey bees in many countries. And we’re not entirely sure
what’s causing it. All we know is that it’s pretty serious. Over the last few decades bees have seen
an invasion of very dangerous foes. Parasites straight out of a horror movie,
like Acarapis woodi, microscopic mites that infect the tracheae
(that’s the breathing tubes) of bees. Here, they lay their eggs and feed from
the fluids of their victims, weakening them considerably and spending
their whole life inside the bees. Or Varroa destructor, a fitting name
because they can only reproduce in honey bee hives and are one of
the bees’ greatest enemies. The female mite enters a honey bee brood
cell and lays eggs on the bee larva before it’s about to pupate and before the hive bees cover the
cell with a wax capping. The eggs hatch and the young mites and
their mother feed on the developing bee in the safety of the capped cell. The bee is not normally killed
at this stage, just weakened, so it still has enough strength to chew
its way through the wax capping and release itself from the cell. As it does, it releases the mother mite
and her new offspring from the cell, and these are free to
spread across the hive, starting the process over again
in a cycle of about 10 days. Their numbers grow exponentially,
and after a few months, this can lead to the collapse
of the entire bee hive. Once outside of the cell, adult mites
also suck the bodily fludis of bees and weaken them considerably. To make things worse, they also transmit
viruses that harm the bees even more and can lead to birth defects
like useless wings. But there are other threats too,
such as viruses and fungi. Under normal circumstances, these
phenomena should be manageable and are not enough to explain the horrendous amount of
dying going on in bees. Over recent years new insecticides
have been introduced that are deadly to bees. Neonicotinoids, a chemical family
similar to nicotine, was approved in the early 1990s
as an alternative to chemicals like DDT. They attack insects by harming
their nervous systems. Today, they are the most widely
used insecticides in the world. Globally, they saw sales
of €1.5 billion in 2008, representing 24% of the global
market for insecticides. In 2013, neonicotinoids were used in the
US on about 95% of corn and canola crops, and also on the vast majority
of fruit and vegetables, like apples, cherries, peaches, oranges,
berries, leafy greens, tomatoes, potatoes, cereal grains, rice, nuts,
grapes, and many more. Bees come into contact with the toxin while collecting pollen or
via contaminated water, often bringing material into the hive, where it can accumulate and
slowly kill the whole colony. The toxins harm bees in a
variety of horrible ways. In high enough doses, it quickly leads
to convulsions, paralysis, and death. But even in small doses, it can be fatal. It may lead to bees forgetting
how to navigate the world, so bees fly into the wild, get lost, and
die alone, separated from their hives. If this happens often enough, a hive
can lose its ability to sustain itself. We know that neonicotinoids
are harmful to bees and that we urgently need
an alternative to it, but there are billions of dollars
to be made in delaying this. Studies sponsored by the chemical
industry magically appear to prove a much lower toxicity to bees, compared to
those produced by independent scientists. There are even more factors
contributing to the demise of bees, like too much genetic uniformity,
crop monocultures, poor nutrition due to overcrowding,
stress because of human activities, and other pesticides. Each of those factors on its own is
a major problem for bees, but together, they probably account
for colony collapse disorder. With parasites upping their
game in recent decades, the honey bees are now
fighting for survival. It would be a catastrophe
if they lost this fight. This is a conundrum we have to solve
if we want to continue living with a relative abundance
and diversity of food. Humanity is deeply interconnected with
Earth and the other lifeforms on it, even if we pretend that we’re not. We have to take better care
of our surroundings, if not to preserve the beauty of nature,
then at least to ensure our own survival. This video is supported by the
Australian Academy of Science, which promotes and supports
excellence in science. See more at . It was a blast to work with them,
so go check out their site. Our videos are also made possible
by your support on . Recently, we passed
an important milestone, which is why there will be
an additional video in July. If you want to support us and become
part of the Kurzgesagt Bird Army, check out our Patreon page! Recently, the YouTube channel
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short video about Game of Thrones. Go check it out on their channel! Subtitles by the Amara.org community

100 comments

Also Earthquakes. I don't think the given reasons are solely responsible, otherwise how did they survive through so many pesticides all these decades? However there are clips of bees dropping dead en masse when there's an Earthquake, or usually a series of quakes. It disrupts them, causes some kind of navigational or panic behavior where they abandon a hive and get stuck flying around until they expire. We'll see more thanks to GSM, 1000s of small quakes happening.

Honey bees are invasive species to the US it's bumblebees that we need to keep the honey bees were brought by the colonists who made Jamestown the Native Americans called The Bee the white man's fly so you're wrong and stupid by

In 18th century during Maria Theresa times in Austro-Hungary, was mandatory for everyone who owned more than 1/3ha of land to keep bees. It should be mandatory again.

Would it be better if mosquitos died instead though?? The Poor Bees WHY??! 😭😭😭😭😭😫😩

Because being too stupid to recreate their stingers after fucking losing them in self-defence isn't an important factor.

Mid information is sad especially when I thought I trusted this honey bees are invasive and were brought here and they out compete our native polinators so if they die there will be plenty of pollinate more expensive honey and beeswax hey let’s lie to everyone online just cus everyone else does it

So why dont we just accept profit loss on crops from bugs and nature eating them (the cycle of life) and not kill ourselves as well as insects by spraying cancer on our growing food…. give me a lady bug on my carrot instead of chemical XGF767 known for its possible link to heart failure

I live in East Yorkshire, UK and this spring/summer the amount of flowers available for bees was staggering but some sunny days the bees could be counted on fingers and toes!
Maybe it is too much pesticides but let's remember that the death of creatures is one of the signs we are in The Last Days.
Zephaniah 1:2 I will utterly consume all things from off the land, saith the Lord.

3 I will consume man and beast; I will consume the fowls of the heaven, and the fishes of the sea, and the stumbling blocks with the wicked: and I will cut off man from off the land, saith the Lord.

4 I will also stretch out mine hand upon Judah, and upon all the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and I will cut off the remnant of Baal from this place, and the name of the Chemarims with the priests;

5 And them that worship the host of heaven upon the housetops; and them that worship and that swear by the Lord, and that swear by Malcham;.

Don't say you haven't been warned.

True, but you're not giving humanity enough credits. I don't doubt "WE" will just pollinate everything ourself. Machine or hands "WE" will be fine. Respect saving the bees 100%, but when you use "Fear" for control or influcence, it's just manipulation.

те популяцыя пчел сократилась примерно в 2 раза и почему то мы от этого не страдаем как же так?

so sad that people dont understand the importance of this little bees,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,for our survival,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,yet they are worried about a stupid theory of global warming,,which might do something in a million years,,,i laugh at that stupidity, yet the bees disappearing would have an instant impact,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻⸻ says:

🙂

If they die then humans will die…..
come to think of it its not bad, what I mean is if humans becomes extinct wouldnt that save the earth because it would stop our destruction against nature???

neonicotinoids have also been proven to attract bees very similarly to how nicotine attracts humans, meaning the bees not only know it's bad for them, but they get so addicted to it that they go back for more 🙁

Actully honey bees kill other bee how long has it been since you seen them exactly soo let them die and yes i did my research

It is very sad that statement like "… if not for nature, atleast for our sake" had to be said

Ok i know your going to see this, but it seems alot of your videos seem to be circulating the problems of humanity, which i really enjoy, but maybe can you try doing a video about the major accomplishments of humanity? If there already videos like this please reply.

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