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Where Have the Honeybees Gone?



Where Have the Honeybees Gone?
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 5 to 7
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   6.29

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    beekeeper, happening, catastrophe, finding, billion, theory, almond, towers, affected, organic, purpose, focus, wherever, chain, entire, stress
     content words:    American Beekeeping Federation, United States, Greg Fallen, New Jersey, Colony Collapse Disorder


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Where Have the Honeybees Gone?
By Jennifer Kenny
  

1     Have you learned about the food chain? In the food chain, certain living creatures depend on other ones. What would happen if one disappeared completely? That's a question scientists are asking because of a crisis with honeybees.
 
2     Honeybees appear to be disappearing. In more than half the states, beekeepers are facing a catastrophe. The American Beekeeping Federation says 700,000 colonies of the United States' 2.4 million bee colonies have been affected. What will that do to the food chain in the U.S.? What's happening?
 
3     Greg Fallen is a beekeeper, or an apiarist. On a warm day last winter, Greg decided to visit his hives on nearby farms. Instead of checking and finding healthy hives, though, he found most of them were completely wiped out. Out of 200 hives, only 50 were left with bees. He talked with other beekeepers that he knew and the same thing was happening to them.
 
4     Now you may not think this is a big deal. In fact, you might wonder why anyone would be concerned about something that stings. Honeybees are important because they pollinate crops for farmers. In fact, the U.S. Department of Agriculture states that honeybees pollinate around $20 billion worth of crops each year.

Paragraphs 5 to 12:
For the complete story with questions: click here for printable


Extended Activities:

1.  Research the life cycle of honeybees.

2.  Create a 3D honeybee.

3.  Draw a diagram of a food chain near your home.

4.  Compare and contrast the queen bee to the worker bees.



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