Saturday, March 08, 2008

Wild Bees May Help Honeybees

By SANDY MILLER HAYS
You've probably already heard that something strange is going on in the world of honeybees. In fact, if honeybees could suddenly talk, perhaps the first words out of their mouth might be "Houston, we have a problem."Thanks to a very mysterious syndrome known as Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), beginning in the fall of October 2006, some beekeepers began reporting the losses — no, make that the disappearance — of as much as 90 percent of their bees.
Left: An alfalfa leafcutting bee (Megachile rotundata) on an alfalfa flower. This bee is widely used for pollination by alfalfa seed growers. ARS scientists
in Logan, Utah, are always on the lookout for wild bees that can be recruited to help the honey bee with the huge job of pollinating the nation’s crops. (Photo by Peggy Greb)