Protein and defense mechanisms
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Custer, Michigan, USA

    Default Protein and defense mechanisms

    I was reading Randy Oliver’s “Understanding Colony Buildup and Decline Part 9A” in the January 2016 American Bee Journal on page 68. It stated that, “Protein is the most precious commodity in bee life, and the colony is frugal as heck with it.”
    I have been studying farming literature, trying to determine why Canada Thistle is making inroads in my farm fields. As my study has progressed; the authors, other information, and an internet search indicated that our modern farming practices and our modern way of life are increasing the carbohydrate content and decreasing the protein content of our food crops. From this I extrapolated that the protein content in pollen, and possibly nectar, was also decreasing.
    After reading the farming articles and researching body functions in various medical publications, I find the body divides food crops into grow foods and go foods. The go foods are the carbohydrates and fats, and the grow foods are proteins. You could say that every defense mechanism the body has against dis-ease is composed of protein. This would explain the reported increase in obesity in our population as the body tries to obtain more protein, it also obtains more carbohydrates. Unwanted or unused carbohydrates are eliminated or stored as fat. This would also explain the increase in weird infectious diseases as the body does not have the proteins to build and maintain its defense mechanisms.
    It would not be too hard to conclude that the disappearance of bees from hives would be the lack of protein in the local bee food and the decision to move to a more protein rich area (good luck). Similarly, since protein composes the defense mechanisms against mite problems; could this be contributing to the demise of colonies due to lack of sufficient protein to manufacture a proper defense to the problems mites introduce.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    KC, MO, USA

    Default Re: Protein and defense mechanisms

    >It would not be too hard to conclude that the disappearance of bees from hives would be the lack of protein in the local bee food

    Disappearance of bees "CCD" has not been seen in several years.

    What we have now are high loses due to mites and diseases.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA

    Default Re: Protein and defense mechanisms

    There is virtually no protein in nectar. Any that is there is accidental pollen... As much as we have bred wheat and corn for carbohydrates (which we have) it really doesn't affect the protein in pollen. This is a human crisis. I see no spillover to bees as far as carbohydrates and protein. The bee food crisis is more to do with round-up killing all the weeds that the bees forage.
    Michael Bush "Everything works if you let it." 42y 40h 39yTF

  5. #4
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Vernon, AZ. USA

    Default Re: Protein and defense mechanisms

    I can see a big difference if protein is in spring beefood. I now feed all of my bees protein, after the winter solstice, till good pollen is available. Not pattys, protein isolate, in heavy syrup. Not much is needed, but keeps them in good condition.

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