The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and EPA on May 2 released a comprehensive scientific report on honey bee health. The report states that there are multiple factors playing a role in honey bee colony declines, including parasites and disease, genetics, poor nutrition and pesticide exposure.
“There is an important link between the health of American agriculture and the health of our honey bees for our country’s long-term agricultural productivity,” said Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan. “The forces impacting honey bee health are complex and USDA, our research partners, and key stakeholders will be engaged in addressing this challenge.”
The decline in honey bee health is a complex problem caused by a combination of stressors, and EPA plans to work with USDA, researchers, beekeepers, growers and the public to address the challenge.
“The report we’ve released is the product of unprecedented collaboration, and our work in concert must continue,” said Acting EPA Administrator Bob Perciasepe. “As the report makes clear, we’ve made significant progress, but there is still much work to be done to protect the honey bee population.”