Front cover image for Healthy Bee, Sick Bee The Influence of Parasites, Pathogens, Predators and Pesticides on Honey Bees

Healthy Bee, Sick Bee The Influence of Parasites, Pathogens, Predators and Pesticides on Honey Bees

Phil Lester (Author)
"Phil Lester's first book, The Vulgar Wasp, was about one of the world's most hated insects. His second is about just the opposite - the honey bee, arguably one of our best-loved six-legged creatures. People have revered honey bees for centuries. Today we celebrate them with toys, postage stamps and campaigns to raise awareness; we dress up in large bee suits to protest the use of pesticides; we've even sent bees into space and watched as they adjusted to microgravity. Bees are one of the world's most efficient pollinators. Their work is vital to the success of many food crops, and hence to the world's economy. So we need to take seriously any threats to their health - including parasites, pathogens, predators and pesticides - and, guided by evidence at every turn, find a way to minimise harm and keep bees thriving. As Healthy Bee, Sick Bee shows, this is no small task. In this book, entomologist Phil Lester explores the wonderfully complex and sometimes brutally efficient life history of honey bees, and the problems they face in New Zealand and around the globe. What causes a beehive to collapse? Are pesticides as big a problem as they appear? What can we do to improve the health of our honey bees? With intelligence, insight and entomologist jokes, Healthy Bee, Sick Bee tells the story of this much-loved little insect and offers new ways of thinking about how to ensure they will stick around in the future."--Publisher's description
eBook, English, 2021
Victoria University Press, Chicago, 2021
1 online resource (202 p.)
9781776563746, 1776563743
Introduction. What kills honey bees?
1. The life history of bees. Democratic decisions and the occasional coup d'état
2. Varroa destructor: The vampire mite A parasite that gives (viruses) as well as takes (blood and fat)
3. Viruses. Manmade, global pandemics in our favourite insect species
4. American foulbrood. My hive smells fishy - now I'm obliged to burn my bees
5. Pathogens. Fungal, trypanosomatid and other parasites and pathogens
6. Pesticides. How do neonicotinoids, Roundup, organic pesticides and other chemicals affect honey bees?
7. Predators. Ants, small hive beetles, hornets, wasps - and a plethora of other predators
8. The future. A lot of things affect bee health - and sometimes populations collapse
Description based upon print version of record