Beekeeper John Van Blyderveen is troubled by the silence in his laneway in Ontario's Oxford County.
The familiar summertime buzz of bees hovering over the lush cherry blossom trees is noticeably absent. The flowers sit untouched.
"This is extremely unusual for this being a bee farm, there are no bees here," Blyderveen says. "This is really sad."
This increasingly familiar scene, which is playing out across North America and Europe, worries beekeepers, farmers and scientists who have been tracking the collapse of honeybee colonies over the past decade.
Additional directions: Heading northbound on Bathurst, there is a small green sign on a wooden stake on the east side of Bathurst Street, about 50m north of Keith Ave. It's labeled "Jokers Hill Trails". But the turn-off for the (unmarked) gravel-road Bathurst spur is about 50m further north on the west side of Bathurst. If people miss it and get to Davis Drive (aka Hsy 9) they can turn around and head south - it's a lot easier to see the turn-off when you're heading southbound.
Food production and bees: Believe it or not, the two go hand-in-hand … like milk and honey.
Bees serve an all-important role in transferring pollen and seeds from one flower to another - a practice that supports at least 30 per cent of the world's food crops and 90 per cent of our wild plants, according to the U.S.-based Natural Resources Defense Council.
But despite a bee's integral role in cross-pollination, news that their population is on the decline is unlikely to come up at the dinner table.
But it is catching the attention of governments around the world, including in Europe, the U.S, as well as here at home, in Canada.
2013 Complete Streets Forum is TCAT's sixth annual active transportation conference taking place on May 27, 2013 at the Hyatt Regency in Toronto. The Share the Road Cycling CoalitionOntario Bike Summit 2013 will take place on May 28-29th at the same location. We are pleased to offer joint registration for both conferences at a discounted rate.
Christine Elwell, a member of Sierra Club Ontario's Executive Committee and a longtime volunteer with Sierra Club has been awarded the International - Raymond J. Sherwin Award. This award "honors extraordinary volunteer service toward international conservation."
Ms. Elwell has been an active international and local volunteer for the Club since 2005 starting out with the Great Lakes and moving on to the United States-Canada International Committee and now the International Team.
Last week, the Star wrote a story about the fears of a conservation agency, Wildlands League, that there will be serious repercussions to the habitats of endangered species if Ontario bends over backwards to accommodate industries as it embarked on “modernization of approvals” under the Endangered Species Act.
The story was in the paper on Wednesday. By Thursday, environmental groups emailed to say they believed a cabinet decision was imminent.