Friday, January 6, 2012

A new bee pest!

Richard has a post on his blog about the discovery of a new pest that is causing harm to honey bee colonies. This insect may be one factor in the mysterious confluence of causes for Colony Collapse Disorder.

Reading about it, I'm reminded of the movie "Alien" -- isn't that the one where nasty things explode out of someone's stomach?  Same idea here, as the phorid fly lays eggs in a bee's abdomen. These flies are known to parasitize bumblebees, which have a more solitary, seasonal lifespan. Imagine the damage they could do to colonies of bees that live year-round!

The good news, at least for our bees, is that these flies have been observed in California and South Dakota. We'll hope they stay far away from Mississippi.

Plus, today the temperature is supposed to reach at least 70 degrees, so our bees can fly about and enjoy the warmer weather. Enjoy your weekend!

Image taken from a preschool site, which means it likely came from somewhere else ...

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