The unexplained disappearance of millions of bees has scientists and bee keepers scratching their heads. So far, bee keepers in more than 20 states have noticed that their honeybees have mysteriously vanished without leaving behind any clues as to why they left their hives. This sudden vanishing of the lowly honeybee could have some severe consequences for the human population.

More than 90 crops in North America rely on honeybees to pollinate them, and almost one-third of the typical American’s diet is directly or indirectly the result of honey bee pollination. Every year millions of bees are transported around the country to meet the ever-growing need for pollination services. This year it is entirely possible that there won’t be enough bees to get the job done.

Although no one really knows what is happening to the bees, there are many theories as to the possible causes of what the experts are now calling “Colony Collapse Disorder?. Scientists are looking into things such as fungal, bacterial and viral diseases, parasitic mites, the possibility of a new infection, or a combination of several diseases simultaneously compromising the bee’s immune systems, stress brought about by crowding, poor nutrition, and the effects of prophylactic antibiotics and miticides sprayed by beekeepers to ward off infections, accidental exposure to a new pesticide that may interfere with the ability of honeybees to navigate, microwaves, and cell phone signals.

Albert Einstein once said that if the bees disappeared, “man would have only four years of life left”, and unfortunately for us, scientists may be able to actually test this theory in the near future.