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Alexandra-Joyce Porte
English 114 B
Professor Morinini
6 May 2015
Little Honey Bee: Big Story
An urgent crisis demands the attention of all human beings and other detrimental factors
that have been immensely affecting lifes most essential living organism, the honeybee. Since the
1990s, beekeepers have been noticing a sudden, widespread occurrence of this particular
undesirable phenomenon in which an unbelievable number of beehives have been abandoned by
the honeybees themselves at an increasingly rapid rate. No sign or trace of the bees not only
aggrandizes the mysteriousness of the empty hives, but also evokes fear throughout humankind,
for the quality of human life heavily relies on a tiny granule-sized organism to keep us alive.
Subsequently, researchers have been scrambling to come up with an accurate explanation and an
effective strategy to save the bees. In spite of the time it takes to research the risks of the loss
honeybee phenomenon, we have already run the risk of losing a substantial portion of the worlds
most invaluable pollinators. It is evident that the shift from ecological farming to destructive
industrial farming with the practices of spraying systemic pesticides on crops is undoubtedly
harming to them and to us. Therefore, it is vitally important that we as human beings divert
ourselves away from intervening with nature and transform our basic knowledge of the world
into one that of cosmic grace, an epic expansion of unity.
Although a honeybee is almost as tiny as a speck of dust, a whole army of them is
indispensably a part of cultivating life here on this planet, from pollinating plants to providing a
variety of living organisms a diverse food supply. As all of us may already know, the significance

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of honeybees is that they pollinate a third of our crops, but have an intrinsically complex system.
As the male drone bees fertilize the Queens 1,000 to 1,500 daily output of daily eggs, Queen
bees live three to four years, and female bees live from 35 to 45 days. They are sent to flowers to
gather nectar and pollen around day 25 of their lives, leaving little time to gather nectar for that
1/12 of a teaspoon (Abuzz Over Bees). Their unpaid busy work sustains a very diverse
ecosystem that make life on earth a unique one like no other because pollination is necessary for
a flowering plant to bear fruit and develop seeds, and is a vital part of a plants life cycle.
According to Albert Einstein, if the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, then man
would have only four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no
more man. Prior to the imminent extinction of the honeybees, also known as the Colony
Collapse Disorder, neither acknowledgment nor any appreciation of the honeybees has ever been
expressed by us human beings who cease to remember the importance of who really prepares
most of the food for us. Featured in the documentary, Vanishing of the Bees directed by
Maryam Henein and George Langworthy, the young and knowledgeable Ellen Page helps us
understand that one out of every three bites of food [people] stick in their mouths, these
honeybees put on their dinner table (Vanishing of the Bees). Also, the documentary investigates
the implications of the worldwide disappearance of the bees that resonates down to our current
agricultural landscapes, and explores the connection between humankind and Mother Nature.
Considering the shifts from ecological and agricultural farming to industrialized commercial
farming, the vanishing bees have been trying to send us a silent, yet alarming message: We are a
species that you cannot live without.

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Due to the extensive use of systemic pesticides, the declining honeybee population
questions the advances of monoculture, an urbanized form of human technology. In the world
of archaic farming, caring resourceful beekeepers contribute to their honeybees happiness by
placing them in a spatial environment and allowing them to flourish in respect to their diverse
diet of wild flora. Unfortunately, tampering with their natural habitat, agricultural farmers tend to
grow a monoculture of predominately single crops which increases the chances of parasites and
pathogens to disturb the potential purposes of existential life. For instance, Bee-coming Experts
state that in the process, foraging bees become exposed to the mixes of intsecticides, fungicides,
and herbicides that farmers uses heavily to avert pest and weed outbreaks in particularly
vulnerable monocultural ecosystems (Bee-coming Experts). Despite the fact that monocultures
have effectively impacted the economy, the wrongful practices of systemic pesticides is making a
detrimental dent on our near future where honeybees will cease to exist. The impact of human
nature significantly impairs the honeybee foraging, learning, longevity. When a commercial
honeybee would go out to forage in a monoculture environment, not only does her colony and
she show signs of malnutrition but also have demonstrated how destructive the lethal chemicals
make them suffer to the point that their neurological system fails to respond, and then they die.
Research and studies reveal that the worlds limited resources are intoxicated with lethal
chemicals that continue to plummet the bee population and in turn intensify the risk of existing
life that ultimately depend on the little buzzing honeybee. Consequently, plants that show signs
of sub-lethal damage accumulate over time to kill a bee: They [systemic pesticides] are designed
to have detrimental effects over a long period of time - not instantly kill insects outright, but
cause sub-lethal effects that damage their systems and tell them to die off en-masse over a longer

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period of time (Vanishing of the Bee). Ironically, human beings basically consume the same
ingredients that have been the leading factor to the imminent extinction of honeybees. Still, after
a whole decade of studies and research, scientists and expertise of this field knowingly
unacknowledged the root of the problem and refute from taking a step toward any force of
change. Industrial farmworkers and even the Environmental Protection Agency have declared the
extensive use of systemic pesticides because Bayer scientists draw on the dominant agroentomological epistemic form in arguing that they have found no adverse effects [of newer
systemic insecticides on honey bees] under natural conditions (Disappearing Bees and Reluctant
Regulators). Not understanding the long-term effects of a devastating issue, nor taking any action
against it will only lead to a breakdown in the end. Dismantling to the culprit of the problem, the
economic scheme of monoculture and mass production incite poor agricultural and human
quality of harmonious unity with nature.
The world needs to be susceptible to the concept of change in order to become one with the
universe, especially when the worlds most invaluable species is at risk. Speaking of, a
reoccurring question of utmost importance to stimulate change that still goes unanswered is one
that asks where have all the honeybees gone. In Europe, troubled honeybees bounced back
within a year or so from Colony Collapse Disorder because the European Commission banned
almost all uses of three neonicotinoids, a family of pesticides that have been implicated in honey
bee immune suppression, increased Nosema infections, bee learning problems and death
(Pollinators at Risk). Undeniably, the problem with the United States is that the processing stage
of handing in documents and proposals from activists who request to end destructive urbanized
farming tends to be much slower than Europes effective symbolism of burning empty beehives

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into flames. We may not know exactly where the honeybees may have gone, but amplifying the
disasters of an extraordinary crisis must not only be carefully examined but also empower
citizens to take part in the action of saving the honeybees. According to Michael Pollan, our
health is directly related to the health of other living organisms: We live in the same habitat as
the animals we eat. Whatever happens to them, happens to us (The Omnivores Dilemma). Not
that human beings necessarily eat actual honeybees, but the viable transitions we make in life
will additively increase the hope of surviving as a species along with our fellow friends that roam
this place we call our one and only home. Nonetheless, tangible solutions could stimulate a
positive outlook on the future. As a few organic beekeepers have been doing, they develop
relationships with the honeybees and become their guardians of the universe. If we adjust our
lifestyle at home by cultivating our own backyard gardens or planting a flowerbed, then we are
doing our part of taking care of this planet we call home. Another suggestion is to educate
ourselves and future generation to responsibly be a part of nature and form a harmonious unity
with the ecological system. When non-profit organizations, students, and the rest of the world
bee-comes a huge part of an organic bees life, then their existence will keep on thriving.
In the end, it is up to humanity to spread awareness of the honey bee extinction in order to
help these imperative pollinators survive the severe threats of human nature. It is important to
remember that the significance of honeybees are the universal connection to preserving our space
and time here on Earth. Without the bees, life here on Earth may probably go extinct due to the
lack of pollination, the imminent decrease in oxygen, and land-roamers including underwater sea
life may not even cease to exist. Thus, if one part of the universe is being tugged on way, then
everything else will be pulled in the same direction. Ultimately, this demonstrates that it is of
utmost importance to save our dear buzzing friends that give us life. In conclusion, if the role of

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the honeybee is to pollinate flowering flora; and if the plants produce oxygen and glucose to all
living creatures; and if this planet and everything in it must live; then human beings must
contribute to the equation and give back to the limited resources here on Earth as much as
possible.

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Works Cited
"Abuzz over Bees: Honey the Talk of Coastal Branch Library's Summer Reading
Program." Walton Sun (Santa Rosa Beach, FL), (2012). Web. 18 April. 2015.
Chevat, Richie, and Michael Pollan. Young Readers Edition: The Omnivore's Dilemma:
The Secrets behind What You Eat. New York: Dial, 2009. Print.
"Disappearing Bees and Reluctant Regulators." Issues in Science and Technology, 27.4
(2011): 33-36. Web. 18 April. 2015.
Suryanarayanan, Sainath, and Daniel Kleinman. "Be(e)coming Experts: The Controversy over
Insecticides in the Honey Bee Colony Collapse Disorder." Social Studies of
Science, 43.2 (2013): 215-240. Web. 18 April. 2015.
Vanishing of the Bees. New York, N.Y.: Films Media Group, 2013. Web. 18 April. 2015.
Watanabe, ME. "Pollinators at Risk." Bioscience, 64.1 (2014): 5-10. Web. 18 April. 2015.