“Honey Bees and the Colony Collapse Disorder” is the topic of a Midland Section of the American Chemical Society lecture from 7-9 p.m. Tuesday at Creative 360, 1517 Bayliss St. in Midland. The public is invited to attend this free event.
The lecture will feature Professor Zachary Huang of Michigan State University. Honey bees are the only reliable pollinator for providing pollination to large acreages of agricultural crops. In Michigan alone, the value of crops that depend on honey bees for pollination is nearly $1 billion per year. Yet, honey bees face attacks from multiple fronts including parasites, pathogens, loss of habitat, lack of good nutrition, dwindling genetic diversity, stresses due to transportation, increasing population and man-made pesticides sprayed into the environment, which often contact hives directly. Huang will explain which, if any, of these factors are responsible for causing colony collapse disorder.
Huang is an associate professor in entomology at Michigan State University. He grew up in a small village in Hunan, China, and attended an agricultural college in China. In the early 1980s, he obtained a national scholarship to study honey bees in Canada. In 1998, he joined MSU as an assistant professor. He became tenured and was promoted to associate professor October of 2004. Huang received the J.I. Hambleton Award for Outstanding Research by the Eastern Apicultural Society of North America in August 2008. He also serves as the president of the American Association of Professional Apiculturists.