This post is part of KQED’s Do Now U project. Do Now U is a biweekly activity for students and the public to engage and respond to current issues using social media. Do Now U aims to build civic engagement and digital literacy for learners of all ages. This post was written by Natalia Font, Kyler White and Kassandra Perez, students at Marian University.


Featured Media Resource
VIDEO: Science Magazine

Could This Pollinating Drone Replace Butterflies and Bees?
As bee populations continue to decline, scientists are developing a drone that can be controlled to pollinate plants.


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Should We Use Drones to Help Bees Pollinate Plants? #DoNowUDrone


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Learn More About “Bee” Drones and Pollination

For the past 10 years, beekeepers in the United States and Europe have been reporting a 30 percent annual decline in honey bee populations, which is considered higher than what is sustainable. This affects the pollination of plants, and most importantly to us, the pollination of fruits and vegetables, such as avocados, apples and onions. From April 2015 to April 2016 alone, bee populations in the U.S. dropped by 44 percent. Although bees are considered pests by many people in the general population, farmers know that honey bees are essential to the agriculture industry. Honey bees pollinate plants by unknowingly collecting pollen sacs on their legs and then distributing them as they fly from flower to flower to collect nectar. Globally, 43 of the top food crops are either entirely dependent or highly dependent on animal pollination. While honey bees are not the only insects that pollinate plants, they are the largest insect population to do so. In order to mitigate the effects that a continued loss of honey bees will have on agriculture, Eijiro Miyako, a Japanese scientist, has been working to develop an insect-sized drone that is capable of artificial pollination. The drone has horsehair to simulate the hairs that are on the honey bees’ legs and is coated in ionic liquid gel to help the pollen adhere. While still a ways off from being used in the field, an initial live-model test was successful.

Supporters of the drone argue that this insect-sized robot will help the honey bees do their job more effectively and efficiently. Currently, beehives are shipped around the country in order to have enough bees to pollinate crops. More than 30 million bees are sent to California every year just to pollinate the almond trees (700 billion almond flowers!). Bees are also trucked to states in the north and south to pollinate everything from pumpkins to blueberries. Miyako’s “bee” drones could eventually reduce the need to move an ever-dwindling population of bees around the country. If created en masse, the drones could be sent to areas of the world with the greatest need for honey bees.

Opponents of using “bee” drones argue that the drones will throw off natural processes or lessen the concern about the decline of bee populations. They also argue that it will also cost an enormous amount of money. Depending on the amount the drones would cost to produce, the cost of renting them could be huge–consider that one beehive contains 20,000-80,000 bees and roughly one hive is necessary to pollinate one acre. Who would pay for this? The price of produce would likely rise to cover the cost and that cost would ultimately be passed onto the consumer. Another argument against using drones is that honey bees are not the only pollinators–butterflies, moths, ants, wasps, and numerous other insects pollinate crops. Is it possible that those insects would fill the niche left by the honey bees?

What do you think? Should we start using drones to pollinate crops?


More Resources

Audio: NPR
Bees Travel Cross Country For The California Almond Harvest
Hear about the journey of bees to California to pollinate almond trees.

Website: University of Georgia
Pollination: Managing Bees for Pollination
Read about moving bees, their placement and more.

Website: Bee Informed
Nation’s Beekeepers Lost 44 Percent of Bees in 2015-16
Learn about the loss of bee colonies in U.S.

Article: Scientific American
The Mind-Boggling Math of Migratory Beekeeping
Read about the complex task of shipping bees from state to state to pollinate a multitude of crops and orchards.


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KQED Do Now U is a biweekly activity in collaboration with SENCER. SENCER is a community of transformation that consists of educators and administrators in the higher and informal education sectors. SENCER aims to create an intelligent, educated, and empowered citizenry through advancing knowledge in the STEM fields and beyond. SENCER courses show students the direct connections between subject content and the real world issues they care about, and invite students to use these connections to solve today’s most pressing problems.

Should We Use Drones to Pollinate Crops? 14 July,2017SENCER

  • Owen Smith

    Considering that I am basing my entire knowledge about this highly technical, multi faceted issue upon the brief examination of two articles, it is a little difficult to definitively sate my beliefs on this matter. The possible benefits of this are huge, especially considering the unmoral impending extinction of honeybees. However, this seems like another scenario where humankind has created a serious problem and is now stumbling over their feet trying to rectify it. Drones have proven to be applicable in certain fields, and have also proven not to be in others. I am interested to so the implementation of drones and the measured success that they carry. I am hopeful that this may be a possible solution this man made problem. However, instead of simply trying to replace an incredibally genetically advanced species (that has evolved over the millennia to function naturally as a pollinator), it would be practical to first attempt to resurrect the bee population. This seems like a more natural, and redeeming solution to this issue. However, this of course would bring along separate issues and complications. Whatever happens this is a complicated issue that needs to be treated with care, due to its potential to be incredibally important.
    #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/death-and-extinction-of-the-bees/5375684

    • Owen Smith

      Seeing as there are currently no other comments, I will place mine here. I agree, most likely due to the extremely in-depth and inarguable points that were made. The bee population was reported to have dropped over 33% in one year, and is constantly on the verge of mass extinction. The species is having serious troubles handling the advancements of human technology and the byproducts thereof. Pollution is responsible for a huge amount of insect deaths, especially bees as they largely operate out of urban areas. I think the argument made above was excellent, and I can’t find a flaw with it.
      #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

    • Brian Luong

      I agree with you that there’s no way to know now the harms that these machines could do. I believe as well that we should focus on focus on the bees first. Not every single problem can be fixed with technology and this seems to be one of those cases. By trying to solve man made problems in nature with technology, it will only go downhill from there. People will continue to treat nature harshly and rely on technologies to fix what should not have been done in the first place. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

    • Brigitte Dahrouj

      I am completely in line with your ideas in regards to trying to increase re-population of bees before we move on to technological replacement of them. It is also a good point that you mentioned that this will come with complications of its own that we can’t even begin to address, but I think that’s because we haven’t really tried. If we spent as much time building these drones as we did studying how to save the bees we would have possibly figured out a solution by now. #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

  • Brian Luong

    I think at the moment the idea of having the drone is good but we have yet to see real life implementations on a large scale. Like the article said, we have no way of paying for these machines and only one company at the moment is able to make them. This could lead to a monopolization of pollination methods and is harmful to states or counties that would not be able to afford these machines. Making the machines also lessens the bee’s role in the ecosystem. According to an article by MSU, bees are responsible for at least 30% of the food we eat and birds, reptiles, and small mammals all rely on bees as prey. Instead of putting money towards these machines, we should support campaigns such as the #selflessselfie campaign by Burt’s Bees which will plant 5,000 wildflower seeds for every selfie taken on social media in order to help bees. This machine should only be used as a a last resort. #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs
    http://www.canr.msu.edu/nativeplants/pollination/

    • Josue Quezada

      I’m completely on board with your statement. The Bee epidemic that is going to happen or in some cases is happening should be dealt with in a natural process and not with drone technology. Drones my seem like a solution to some but even the scientist that developed it had to control the drone himself, and had yet to develop AI technology to let it fly on its own. Your argument is true and accurate and it is a good thing that some companies are stepping forward to help with the issue. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

  • Josue Quezada

    Taking into account the amount of bees that are used to pollinate the billions of plants it would cost too much and take up too many resources to be able to replace bees with drones. The bee population may be in decline but to try to solve the issue by replacing them with technology might no be the best solution. As stated in the article other insects such as butterflies and ants could fill the gap of the bee. Another reason that using drones would not be the best solution is that drones require too many resources, such as batteries, replacement parts, and computers to run the AI of the drone. Although the dwindling population of bees is of great concern to many, we should think about natural solutions to the increasing their numbers or finding other insects that can fill that gap fast. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

    • Ryan Sotelo

      I agree, I think that if we can find a natural solution to this problem it would be much better. Between repopulation of bees, or filling that gap with another insect, there is something else that could be focused on rather than manufacturing billions of machines which as you said would require too many resources.

    • Zoe Atava

      I completely agree that there is no reason to create technology to do the job that a bee could do. Obviously, these scientists prioritizing the wrong thing. They’re not emphasizing the issue of the death in bees, rather they’re trying to find an expensive, unnatural solution. I too think that we should look into solutions that are more natural and that drones would utilize too much time, resource, and money. Also we can never know the true affect that it can have on ecosystems, malfunctions and all. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

    • Luke Williams

      I do think a more natural solution is needed but if drones are all we can think of right now then so be it. I just hope its not the permanent solution. We cant be messing around with mother nature its something we have no control over. Bee’s are very important to our lives and we do need them around. We should be helping them as much as we can.

      #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

  • Brigitte Dahrouj

    NO! Just make an effort to keep the bees we have and stop killing them! Bees are an indicator species and a keystone species, they are crucial to our survival. These drones would not replace bees efficiently enough seeing as the cost would be pricey to fully replace the entire bee population. Here’s what life would be like without bees: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7X1xIIyZw3M
    In addition, they are an indicator species. Here’s a dictionary definition: A species whose presence, absence, or relative well-being in a given environment is a sign of the overall health of its ecosystem. By monitoring the condition and behavior of an indicator species, scientists can determine how changes in the environment are likely to affect other species that are more difficult to study.
    Essentially, if an indicator species, like bees, starts dying at an enormous rate, that is an indication that there is something wrong with that environment and other species, like humans, are likely unsafe and could die or get sick as well.
    They help us know when we are in danger and they keep us fed. We need to shift our efforts from replacing bees to saving bees. #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

    • Tori Mancuso

      The video you added was quite eye opening. First of all, I had no idea there was over 20,000 species of bees. When I first thought about it, I thought losing bees would only affect farmers and their produce, but that’s not true. Ultimately, it’ll have a ripple effect and will change our lives in many different aspects. I agree with your point in that our biggest concern should be focused on saving the bees, rather than investing time and money into another source.

    • Nanci Contreras

      THANK YOU BRIGITTE! Bottom line of of our problem is that we try to find the easy way out so we can keep doing what we’re doing without having to change any of our bad habits, at least long enough so we can die and the problem can be pawned off on the next generation! #SaveTheMFBees #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

  • Zoe Atava

    I feel as if using drones is the seemingly “easy way out”. Rather than addressing the actual problem, which is the dwindling population of bees, and how to countermeasure this, scientists are trying to find a way without them. I think that a drone may be effective if the entire population of bees are on an extreme decline, and there is no way that there is any pollination. But that is not the case. Drones should not be addressed due to the disruption of nature and our ecosystems. There is no need to add anything more artificial into nature if there is no dire need. Obviously humans are the reason why bees are not thriving, and it is our jobs, as humans, to fix this issue. https://beeinformed.org/2016/05/10/nations-beekeepers-lost-44-percent-of-bees-in-2015-16/ Here is some information on the decline of bees. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

    • Yasmin Gonzalez

      I agree with you that we aren’t trying to solve the real problem just the problem that will effect our agriculture. We are focusing more on ourselves and the pollination of our food and crops instead of focusing on the lives of the bees. The worst part is that we are the ones causing their decline with things such as pesticides that are killing them. We are being selfish by creating a replacement for the bees instead of putting this money and effort towards helping them repopulate. I also think that at this point we are letting technology consume everything we do and we need to allow nature to take its coarse as it always had. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

    • Christiana Manzanares

      I agree with you Zoe, we are simply just pushing aside the problem we have created and not actually fixing it. If we could find a natural solution to this problem without having to add anything artificial to the environment I think that would be the best solution. However I do see if there is a dire need for the drones we should use them. . #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

  • Tori Mancuso

    Having drones that aid in pollinating plants sounds extremely beneficial but overlooks the larger problem. We are losing bees at a rapid pace and they are one of the main contributors for pollination; without them we may lose many species of plants. This alternate form of pollination would take time to be implemented as well as an abundant amount of money. Would farmers have any other choice than to pay for these services? Will there be set rules and regulations that come along with it? We as humans tend to try and control every aspect of nature and more often than not we throw off the natural way things should be. Coming from a small farming community, I have directly seen how things such as pesticide regulations and implementation affect the local farmer. It creates many hoops to jump through, only costing the farmer more time and money, thus raising the prices of their goods. The problem is many people are unaware of this problem and the potential impact it may have. Recently, Honey Nut Cheerios removed their bee “mascot” from the box in order to raise awareness for the decreasing number of bees as well as to plant seeds and create a flourishing environment for them to live. They talk more about it on their website: http://www.cheerios.com/en/BringBackTheBees.aspx #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

    • Mark Isberg

      I Agree, this article is missing the bigger problem. Bee colonies are collapsing at an ever increasing rate. and according to the article “Globally, 43 of the top food crops are either entirely dependent or highly dependent on animal pollination. ” Pollination keeps our food costs down, by the basis if we had to promote these “drones” they would be costly and raise the bottom lines of farmers, thus making food more costly. Maybe we need to conduct detailed scientific research on the issue at hand, then make a resolution to prevent the need to implement such a costly program. Lets move towards saving the bees instead: check out this article on how to save the bees. http://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/wilderness-resources/stories/5-ways-to-help-our-disappearing-bees #DoNowUDrone #myCMSTArgs

  • Mark Isberg

    According to the article, there has been a 30% decrease in the population of bees in the for the last 10 years. This is an obvious problem as it means bees cannot go around pollinating plants, which hurts the AG community specifically. The idea that fake drone bees can be created to pollinate our plants sounds drastic, for I think of obvious price increases in food. Robot drone bees are most likely not a cheap option, therefore cost would definitely rise. I believe we should work on increasing the population of bees instead, working towards that instead of finding costly alternatives. In the end, it may be necessary because we have to eat regardless. #DoNowUDrone #myCMSTArgs

    • Melody Sprague

      I totally agree that we need to work on increasing the population of bees. I think the bee population is a bigger problem then finding other ways to pollinate our plants. But if the bees keeping dying off and there is nothing we can do then i totally agree it would be beneficial. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

  • Yasmin Gonzalez

    I think that this is a very good idea and invention that we should use ONLY if necessary. When I say if necessary, its because I think that we should focus on helping the population of bees increase instead of creating a replacement for them. Now if we fail to help the population of bees increase and we are in dire need of pollination then I think the drone is a good back up plan. Also it is unnatural, I think that the use of technology has been very beneficial to our society but at this point its becoming too much. In a Washington post article https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/07/10/the-surprisingly-simple-reason-millions-of-bees-are-dying/?utm_term=.39a7179b3e92 it gives some explanation as to why bees have been dying at such high rates and large numbers and its because of pesticides that we are using. We are one of the main reasons bees have been dying and instead of trying to save them for our agricultural benefit we are using technology to create a replacement for them. We humans always put ourselves before nature and animals and if we create a replacement for bees that will pollinate our crops then there will be no reason for us to keep them around except perhaps for honey. #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

  • Christiana Manzanares

    Should We Use Drones to Help Bees Pollinate Plants? #DoNowUDrone

    I never though of using drones to help pollinate plants. I think it is a very interesting and good idea that shows how much science is really advancing. I think we should definitely use drones to help bees pollinate plants but only if it becomes that that is what we absolutely have to do. I rather not mess with nature and throw it off just yet until we have to. Instead, we should focus more on maintaining and growing our bee population and not letting it die out. By using drones to help pollinate plants we are overlooking a problem that we are letting the bee population die out and just trying to throw in a different solution rather then fixing the problem we have created. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/robo-bees-could-aid-insects-with-pollination-duties/ #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

    • Mackenna Neal

      I agree we should not mess with nature! Our focus should be maintaining and growing the bee population. Using drones could just create another problem. #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs @suepeterson

  • Nanci Contreras

    Why should or would we use drones to do the job nature naturally took care of? While an option, it would be beyond insulting seeing as the loss of bees is a direct result of how we treat our natural environment and how we attempt to tailor it to our needs. The only reason we would have to use drones is because of the fear of bee extinction. Here’s an idea, STOP TREATING OUR PLANET LIKE GARBAGE SO SPECIES DON’T GO EXTINCT AND WE’RE LEFT WITH THESE “LAST RESORT” “NO OTHER CHOICE” type of discussions. Don’t take it from me though, here’s an article that does a better job of pointing out how humans are stupid because we see the effects of insecticides, yet still wonder where our world’s bees are going. http://www.collective-evolution.com/2014/05/15/new-harvard-study-proves-why-the-bees-are-all-disappearing/

    • Nanci Contreras

      #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

    • Jonny Ballesteros

      This is something that goes back to us for the blame. We as a whole need to treat out environment better so that we do not have to deal with certain issues like this. Putting species in a position where now we need to find a solution. I agree with you, simply treating our planet better and wipe out all these issues that are happening. #MyCmstArgs #DoNowUDrone

  • Jonny Ballesteros

    The idea of having drones replace bees for pollinating is hard to wrap my mind around it. I could see the benefits of doing this will help keep bees from going extinct or reducing in numbers, but I also believe that the cost for us to apply this would be expensive. We should be focusing on how to help these animals or coming with up with a system of reducing these numbers. Possibly drones could be the answer but it goes back to how much will it cost us? http://guides.library.harvard.edu/c.php?g=310733&p=2072758
    #DoNowUDrone #MyCmstArgs

  • Mackenna Neal

    I do not see how drones could do a better job than bees. If anything our main concern should be sustaining the population of bees. Bees are very important to the planet and instead of trying to find a replacement for their job we should be focused on how to repopulate them. There is no way that we will be able to cover the amount of acreage that bees cover. If humans are constantly looking for ways to overcome mother nature, mother nature will eventually overcome us. Humans need to change their perspective on how to combat global warming and other environmental effects. #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs @disqus_yrY0hRfjE4:disqus

    • Melanie Funk

      I completely agree. However, the bee population is going to take a while to repopulate if possible. This would not be replacing our need for bees by any means, but a back up until we can properly restore the bees. #MyCMSTArgs

  • Melanie Funk

    I definitely agree with the fact that humans are the reason we’re even in this position to begin with and our efforts should be on saving the bees. However, if using a drone is going to stop us from unnecessarily shipping these fragile bees across the nation, that’s what we should do for the time being. Not a permanent solution and should most definitely not take away from the severity of the bee population declining, but it’s a back up plan. http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/02/could-pollinating-drone-replace-butterflies-and-bees. This is by no means a solution to our ever growing environmental crisis, but could be a band aid for now until we as humans figure out a good way to help the bees.
    #MyCMSTArgs

  • Luke Williams

    I think it wouldn’t be a terrible idea to help the bees with drones. Having drones would help a lot but it doesn’t fix the problem at hand. Maybe one day we figure out we don’t need bees anymore and we let them die. That would be terrible. We are the reason why they are dying off. We need to do something to help the bee population so we can take care of things naturally but since we are having a problem we need to do something to help it along for now. I do think this would be hard to do because we would have to make a lot of drones to make up for the loss of bees. http://www.cnn.com/2017/03/20/world/bees-eco-solutions/

    #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

  • Melody Sprague

    To start, replacing the jobs of bees to pollinate plants with drones will not in anyway help the bees. I think using drones is a horrible idea and a great way to kill off the bee population. Bees are very important in our environment and we should be trying to help save the bees rather than replace them with an unnatural object. Not to mention who knows if these drones will be reliable and be able to pollinate as well as bees do. So stating that i think sticking with our natural resources is whats best.http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/02/could-pollinating-drone-replace-butterflies-and-bees #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone @laczkoWord

    • Juan Benitez

      I completely agree with you in that the drones would help further decline the already faltering bee population. Bees are essential for not only plant life but our lives as well. We also do need to conduct some research to make sure the drones would be reliable enough to be fully entrusted with this task. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

      • Gerald Peters

        Juan, as someone who has worked with bees before, i wholeheartedly disagree, as when a colony collapses in the wild, it can take years for a new one to become of a size they can split and repopulate the area. If the bee’s job can be continued with drones in the meantime, why should we not use the technology. #myCMSTArgs

    • Trevor Ramsey

      I agree that we should be focusing on natural ways to pollinate crops instead of turning to new technologies. Evolution provided a living pollinator that is capable of doing more than just pollinating crops. #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

    • j tech46

      Although I agree that we don’t know how reliable drones would be, I don’t think it’s accurate to say this tech is going to kill off bee populations. It just makes the job easier if anything. Its not as though the bees won’t do fine if they don’t have pollen on their legs.
      #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

  • Fernando Hernandez

    For the subject of replacing bees with drones to implement their natural occupations of pollinating flowers, I believe it is unnatural, and only with throw our ecosystem off. This can have negative impacts on the environment, also, it won’t be free. So who or what will keep charge of paying for these unnatural drones. If there has been a decline in bee population, it would only make sense to focus on increasing that population, instead of looking for a drone replacement, which could fail, and only lead to more problems. The reasons should go beyond the love of honey and be considerate of Mother Nature.
    http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2017/0209/Should-pollinating-drones-take-over-for-honeybees#MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone @laczkoWord

    • Eva Gonzalez

      I agree it is unnatural and simply put.. just sad! that this is our last resource… we have great technology and should be using it to help bees not destroy them.. she should create pesticides that don’t kill bees and be more careful with our ecosystem… education is the key.. and lots of hard work ahead.. Bees are crucial for our survival … #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone @2ndheartmom

    • Jess Elm 🐙

      I completely agree. We already have too many things that our money is going to and now they want to throw this into the mix. Why would we spend money on something that can be done for free, or more effective by just helping the bee’s?? http://elitedaily.com/news/world/humans-need-bees-to-survive/755737/

  • Eva Gonzalez

    Using drones makes me incredibly sad… instead of spending our time and money on helping the real bees we are relying on drones to do the job 🙁 Bee’s need our help, and what makes us believe that by doing this we won’t soon replace other animals that are on the verge of extinction.. We can’t solve the Bee issue by creating drones, we need to invest our time educating the masses of how crucial Bee’s are to our survival! I have done my part and saved a couple of Bee’s from drowning in pools.. As minuscule of a gesture it may seem to you, it is a great way to save our little friends… also planting certain plants that bees like: http://thehoneybeeconservancy.org/plant-a-bee-garden/ (there is a list of plants, that I have started planting 🙂 if we all do our part we can save the bees!
    Let’t not rely on drones, and lets invest our time in helping our little bees!! #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone @2ndheartmom

  • Summer Berglund

    There are not enough drones in the world to do what bees and butterflies do for us. We’d be putting so many people out of jobs! My boyfriend is in the bee business and has been for years now. They only have a few businesses who have them bring bees out to pollinate and if even one of them decided to use drones instead one season, they’d take a major hit. Beekeeping is getting more and more popular throughout my community alone. It’s so important to realize that we need to let nature take its course. KEEP THE BEES!!!

  • Juan Benitez

    replacing the jobs of an insect is in no way an idea that should be put into effect. Firstly, this will ruin the already declining bee population. Not to mention the lack of research on whether or not the drones will do as good of a job as their bee counterparts. Another big thing would be the lack of honey in this world. I think we should stick to saving the bees.#MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

  • Robert Gomez

    Now i really think that it would be a horrible idea to create drones to replace bees but i do believe that drones that are capable of doing this would be smart to have. The reason is because the bees are dying out slowly and we shouldnt help the cause of killing the species. I do believe that drones should be created so if this tragedy ever happens then we wont have to worry as much of the plants around the world being pollinated. I think that the drones should be practiced and made so that it can be analyzed to see if it would actually work. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

  • jhanelle rhoden

    No I do not believe that we should use drones to pollinate crops. Beekeepers in the United States and Europe reported that 44% of honey bee population has gone extinct. The extinction of honey bees affects the pollination of crops, fruits, vegetables, mostly foods/things we absolutely cannot survive without. Honey bees pollinate plants by unknowingly collecting pollen sacs on their legs and then distributing them as they fly from flower to flower to collect nectar. Globally, 43 of the top food crops are either entirely dependent or highly dependent on animal pollination. As KQED said “The drone has horsehair to simulate the hairs that are on the honey bees’ legs and is coated in ionic liquid gel to help the pollen adhere.” Most of this is caused by overpopulation, experiments and the use of chemicals that helps in causing honey bees to become extinct. We are shipping beehives around the country in order to have enough bees to pollinate crops. More than 30 million bees are sent to California to pollinate the crops there. Using drones to replace honey bees will throw off the natural other of things not to mention to fund all those drones would cost a lot of financial concerns. We should take necessary steps to help stop the extinction of honey bees and replacing them with drones will not help the earth at all.

  • Jess Elm 🐙

    I think that we should be focusing on saving the bee’s rather then trying tom find a way to replace them. That being said I don’t think that we should use these drones. The bee’s pollinate most of the food we eat, in fact they pollinate a third of it. Putting drones in charge of this is very disturbing. We can see in the video how difficult it is to guide the drones. There is obviously a lot more work that needs to be done in order for these to actually be a practical use. In that time the bee’s are only going to decline further. Three winters ago 23.2% of the bee colonies disappeared. The problem is only going to get worse if we don’t do something to fix the actual problem. #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

    • Janette Estrada

      I agree with your argument about how drones are not 100% effective. We would be wasting our money on a technological advance that may not even work by the looks of it. This idea of drones replacing Bees is distracting us from the real issue which is Bees going extinct and ways we could help them! #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

  • Trevor Ramsey

    Technology has always had a productive impact on society by doing laborious work in a quicker, easier way. As time and technologies advance, even easy tasks have started to be taken overtaken by automation. While some technologies are important, some seem to be doing too much when there is no need for it. Natural pollinators are being destroyed by pesticides, insecticides and other harmful chemical sprays. Instead of fixing a mistake started by humans, we should look at restoring the natural way evolution intended life to go. #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

  • Janette Estrada

    Focusing on replacing bees with drones is total ciaos. Why should we be investing money on a product that we all know may or may not work? There has not been a release of reliable information that states these drones would be able to carry out the job the same exact way bees pollinate. We should be focusing on ways to help to conserve the bee community. We need to focus on the actual problem and not waste tons of money on technology that will only isolate us from the issue. Bees provide majority of our food source and without them we could begin to think about cuts in profit, crop, and work! Keep bees, and stay away from drones! #DoNowUDrone #MyCMSTArgs

    • Lauren Davis

      totally agree! fully try to fix the problem we have with our bees before bringing in technology that could possibly ruin it.
      #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone @2ndheartmom

  • j tech46

    I think that it would be a good idea to perfect and develop this technology for several reasons. Firstly, what if bees begin to die out dramatically for some reason? This would be a good fallback just in case. Secondly, it doesn’t have to replace bees completely. It could lighten the overall workload so that we wouldn’t have to move as many bees all over the country. Lastly, this is a totally new technology that could open up a whole new source of jobs and revenue.

    http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/02/could-pollinating-drone-replace-butterflies-and-bees

    #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUDrone

  • Gerald Peters

    As long as the use of drones is highly regulated to areas where bee population is lacking, then this is a very reasonable method to use in order to pick up the slack for the bees, however, this should be only temporary until bee populations are able to recover. #myCMSTArgs

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