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Vanishing Bees (2009)Vanishing of the Bees (2009)

           What's happening to the honeybee? In the fall of 2006, David Hackenberg reported a massive loss of bees among his 3,000 hives. Before long, similar reports surfaced from around the world. Rick Smith was a fifth generation beekeeper who was put out of business. This documentary film explores "Colony Collapse Disorder" (CCD). In one instance, 40,000 healthy colonies of 2 billion bees turned into empty boxes. Scientists have now documented specific symptoms, and eliminated crazy theories, but for the most part there remain more questions than answers. The beekeepers strongly suspect the residual effects of non-lethal doses of pesticides that are used in farming. Research is hard to come by since it's often funded by the chemical companies. Organic and wholistic beekeepers add another perspective. One thing's for sure, from as far back as ancient Egypt to California's almond orchards and Maine's blueberries, we need bees, and in a big way. For a more recent update on CCD, see the Time magazine cover story, "A World Without Bees" (August 19, 2013). I watched this film on Netflix Streaming.

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