Local honey distributor Hummer and Sons is feeling the effects. "We've lost about 30 percent last year. In a normal year we lose about 10 to 15," said Aulds. While the cause of the illness is still a mystery, scientists suspect it could be a number of factors including: parasites, fungus or the recent drought.
The bottom line is, unless this problem is solved it could affect us all. "We can't pollinate ourselves. We have to bring the bees to actually pollinate for the farmers and without pollination, the farmers don't make good crops." And poor crops mean higher prices at the supermarket.
Honey bees pollinate about a third of the crops we eat. So far 22 states have been affected by Collapsed Colony Syndrome. "If you have strong colonies there will be strong pollination. If you have weaker colonies there will be no pollination going on. Without that pollination our food supply could eventually be at risk.