Here is a link to a somewhat less pessimistic article on CCD, the current state of affairs with bees, and a likely possible cause. I agree that the consequences of a loss of Apis mellifera would be a severe blow, but I think the reality is not (yet?) quite so dire as a recently linked article predicted.
Best Regards, – MP
Your comments miss the fact that solitary bees, such as the Orchard Mason bee, are roughly 10 times more effective [per capita] as pollinators than honeybees, and are plentiful in most locales. Bumblebees ain’t bad at it, either. I’ve relied on these species for years, in an environment where there are very few wild honeybees.
Of course, this doesn’t change the fact that commercial agriculture would be largely wiped out without honeybees, but at least it should save you and me from having to dress up in bee costumes and go flitting from flower to flower. – Charley S.
I have just recently found your site and I am starting to read you regularly. I find that I agree with 99.99% of what you have to say so far. I have seen our own small bee hive wiped out in the last few years, and we decided to buy and work with Mason Bees. There is no honey production but they (the mason bees) are pollinating little machines. It might be something for your readers to look into – fyreman
You wrote: “Food storage. Increase the depth of your family’s food storage program. Heretofore, I had recommended a two year supply. I am now recommending a four year supply.”
Now that you are recommending four years of storage, would you please be more specific in what you recommend? Are you referring to a freeze dried, wheats, beans and rice, dehydrated, etc. type storage approach? I’m assuming a long term approach is the only way to go when trying to store for four years. Thanks, – Russ in Georgia
JWR Replies: For long term storage foods, I generally recommend storing bulk wheat, rice, and beans in 5 or 6 gallon food grade buckets with oxygen absorbing packets.
Given the likelihood of honey shortages for the foreseeable future, I also recommend getting a 10 year supply of honey. Because powdered milk tends to go rancid, I recommend that you buy commercially-packed nonfat dry milk in #10 (one gallon) nitrogen-packed steel cans. (Available from Ready Made Resources) Oils and fats are best stored in the form of canned butter (available from Best Prices Storable Foods) and frozen olive oil. (The plastic bottles work fine, but don’t try to freeze glass bottles of oil!)
In addition to long term storage food, you might also want some conveniently packaged “Get Out of Dodge” type foods, such as retort-packaged MREs. For information on MRE storage, see the MRE Information Page.