Really? Nosema?

April 17, 2009

Branden posted this link as a comment a previous post: Cure For Honey Bee Colony Collapse?. The article says, in part:

In a study published in the new journal from the Society for Applied Microbiology: Environmental Microbiology Reports, scientists from Spain analysed two apiaries and found evidence of honey bee colony depopulation syndrome (also known as colony collapse disorder in the USA). They found no evidence of any other cause of the disease (such as the Varroa destructor, IAPV or pesticides), other than infection with Nosema ceranae. The researchers then treated the infected surviving under-populated colonies with the antibiotic drug, flumagillin and demonstrated complete recovery of all infected colonies.

Eh? I’m no microbiologist, and honestly, I’m barely a beekeeper, but I find it hard to believe that after all the hullaballoo, Colony Collapse Disorder could really just be Nosema, a well-known and treatable disease. When they say “found evidence of” CCD, what does that mean, exactly? Are they sure they were seeing CCD and not just Nosema?

I mean, come on, beekeepers have tried treating for Nosema before, and would have noticed if it really led to “complete recovery of all infected colonies”, right?

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