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UW-Madison Doctoral Student Focuses Research on Hive Microbes for Clues to Honeybee Disease

September 5, 2012 |

Article Excerpt – University of Wisconsin-Madison doctoral student Kirk Grubbs is studying the microbial communities associated with healthy honeybee hives, in hopes of better understanding why a lot of them are getting sick.

Honeybees are vital to our food system. U.S. farmers count on them to pollinate about $15 billion worth crops each year. But today’s bee colonies are at risk. Since 2006, commercial hives have been plagued by what’s known as colony collapse disorder, a perplexing phenomenon in which large numbers of bees abruptly disappear. Scientists aren’t sure what causes this to happen, but they speculate that a number of factors may be involved—from mites and diseases to malnutrition and pesticides.

Read the full article here:

http://news.cals.wisc.edu/environment/2012/09/04/research-on-hive-microbes-may-lead-to-better-understanding-of-honeybee-disease/

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