Why half of San Diego’s bees are gone

Mr. Bauder, Mr. Ryland's right, you're wrong. The link within the article to the working paper is the real story, the WashPost writer was just adding his own little cheekiness. In short, beekeepers found ways to manage. The collapse disorder still hasn't been found here, as the guy from the county ag department stated clearly that other factors have been at work. Also, your figure showing the drop from 1942 to present day is potentially misleading -- you rely on the raw "number" of colonies, not the size of colonies and number of bees -- not to mention that we farm less land and more efficiently (for better or worse) than we did in the 1940s, and ag in general has consolidated. Imperial County probably has fewer wild bees because nothing grew there until it was irrigated. A few years ago I had to deal with a writer who insisted on repeating unfounded accusations that cell phone towers were killing the bees. It was painful stuff. There are other conspiracy types out there about this, but in the end, all your article is really telling me is that the costs of honeybee-keeping and honey production have gone up, in part because of a national phenomenon that hasn't affected San Diego County's bees. Heck, I'd like to see international figures on this -- it's not like the U.S. is the only country that needs bees. In short, you suggest colony collapse disorder is to blame, then further in your article an official states quite clearly that's not the case. This puts this piece on the same level as articles about vaccinations retarding kids. But at least you didn't quote Mike Aguirre, for once.
— February 17, 2016 3:34 p.m.

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