This undated handout photo provided by the Agriculture Department shows the deadly parasitic Varroa mite on the back of this honey bee is one of many insect pests that sugar esters may be useful in ... more 
This undated handout photo provided by the Agriculture Department shows the deadly parasitic Varroa mite on the back of this honey bee is one of many insect pests that sugar esters may be useful in controlling. Sucrose octanoate, a sugar ester, can kill the mite without harming the bee. Nearly one out of four American honeybee colonies died this winter, but that’s not quite as bad as recent years, says a new U.S. Department of Agriculture survey of beekeepers. Under siege from parasites, disease, pesticide use, nutrition problems and a mysterious sudden die-off, 23 percent of bee colonies failed and experts say that’s considerably less than the previous year or the eight-year average of 30 percent losses. (AP Photo/Scott Bauer, Agriculture Department) less 
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Associated Press | Photo By Scott Bauer, Agriculture Department
Thu, May 15, 2014 10:36 AM EDT