Of the 100 crops that account for 90 percent of the food eaten around the globe, 71 rely on bee pollination, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. We have written a few times over the years about the mysterious affliction that is killing bees. An update has recently appeared in the New York Times.
Gloomily, the article states that things are getting worse: “In the year that ended in April 2016, 44 percent of the overall commercial bee population died. In a typical year before the plague, only 10 percent to 15 percent would have died”.
The upshot is that no one is certain what is killing the bees. The bee farmer, who rents bees to farms that need them, states that certain types of pesticides and insecticides are likely the culprit. The difficulty, he says, is that there is not enough research going on to solve the problem. All of this as we get ready to welcome new US regulators who are likely to slow down efforts to deal with environmental problems. Yikes!!!
There is good news on the Canadian lobster front though. The CBC reported that as oceans around Nova Scotia, PEI, and New Brunswick warm (due to global warming, perhaps), the production of lobsters is increasing because warmer temperatures produce more eggs. In the area between Shelburne to Digby, for example, lobster landings by weight have nearly tripled in the past 20 years. Federal scientists expect this trend to continue over the next few years at least. See article here.