Worldwide urbanization and numerous technologies lead to the proliferation of radiation that continues to put human health & wildlife at a greater risk. Significant pollinators such as honey bees provide numerous benefits to nature & humankind but are facing multiple threats. Radiations from cell phones & other wireless devices influence honey bees' behavior and physiology.
Cell phones & other electronic devices are a significant general well-being concern because of the possible risk of constant exposure to low levels of radiofrequency and microwave radiation that pulse off the phone antennae close to the head. These worries have initiated a huge assemblage of both epidemiological and exploratory exploration in people and animals. Honey bees are reliable indicators of environmental status and possess several important ecological, ethological, and morphological characteristics. Moreover, they are the best exploratory insects to concentrate on the impact of electromagnetic radiation because they possess in their abdomen which helps the bees in their orientation flight.
Many scientists are focused on biological and social changes in honey bees because of radiation impacts. For that, the constant radiation levels have been experimented with. Still, the diverse technical outlooks such as radiation emission levels, handset radiation emission measures, and multi-sources of radiation must be measured during research.
Are Radiation Effects Responsible for Colony Collapse Disorder?
Various studies were carried out to confirm whether the effects of the radiation are responsible for colony collapse disorder (CCD) or not. The wagging dance, foraging activity, and navigation ability of honey bees are hampered by such radiations. Is electromagnetism one of the reasons for the CCD?
Researchers have kept two groups of bees in honey boxes with and without mobile phones to find out more. The health condition and behavior changes in honey bees are anticipated during the experiment. The review has shown that the honey bees wondered whether or not to go into the hive where mobile phones are set inside. The honey bee felt distressed and gave an alarm sound about the sign of risk. However, the count of honey bees entered in another honey box (without a cell phone) is relatively high, and no behavioral change was recorded. This was clear proof that the radiation of cell phones or any other electromagnetic device would be risky for the bees. The selected hives with mobile phones and results showed the solid annihilation of navigational abilities in worker bees, and the colony collapsed due to high radiation emission.
Apart from this, honey bee colonies exposed to such radiation show adverse effects on reproduction. Honey bee colonies in reach of such radiations had reduced their production of queens by almost half, noticeably weakening the chances of successfully founding new colonies.
The vast majority of the studies concentrated on EMF radiation of mobile phones with CCD. The EMF emission of cell towers should be considered a serious issue, and more research is required in this field. Different cell towers introduced in the same area should be additionally considered. While each tower might emit radiation within permissible limits, overall radiation should be measured, and the CCD issue should be explored. Such experiments should be done regularly to assess the negative impact such radiations are causing on the bees & their hives.
According to Mr. Basem Barry, founder & CEO of Geohoney, the radiation-protected honey boxes might be used to shield the hives from high radiation exposure. The other preventive measures can be viewed as planting more trees and gardens. Few trees and plants demand honey bees to gather honey from significant distances. Thus, it is impacted by ecological factors and neglected to return its hives. If trees are accessible at successive distances, they may stay away from such radiation. After all, our little effort can do great to save honey bees' lives.