A Brief History of Honeybee Colony Collapse

Chris Higgins
YouTube / The New York Times
YouTube / The New York Times / YouTube / The New York Times

In early 2007, beekeepers in the U.S. began to notice an alarming problem: their bees were disappearing. In many cases, colonies would empty out overnight, the workers abandoning their posts, leaving the queen alone (or nearly so). In the years since, scientists and beekeepers have worked together to isolate the causes of what we now call "Colony Collapse Disorder." Although there's no single cause, this ten-minute report from The New York Times (part of their excellent Retro Report series) looks back at pesticides, parasites, pathogens, and the worker bees' penchant for "altruistic suicide." Have a look:

Read more about this story from The New York Times in The Head-Scratching Case of the Vanishing Bees. Also check out my 2011 review of Queen of the Sun, a full-length documentary about the issue.