I've been following / covering this story since it broke several years ago. Beekeepers figured it out almost immediately, but the pesticide manufacturers took a page from Big Tobacco and made loads of noise to obscure focus. "A Spring Without Bees," one of the first books on CCD, published 4 years ago, made a devastating case against neonicotinoids: http://www.amazon.com/Spring-without-Bees-Collapse-Endangered/dp/1599214326
It's just taken a while to catch up with more data.
"The best science available" may be among the snarkiest phrases out there. If research isn't funded, then the best science may not be so good. And years can easily go by in the time it takes to for studies to be funded, conducted and published.
CCD is just one of many wildlife health catastrophes. Considering that nearly three quarters of all diseses are zoonotic, which means that they affect multiple species, including humans, you'd think we'd put more money into research, yet wildlife biologists are among the most under /insecurely funded. Adding to the mess, they often publish in obsure subsciption-required journals.
There really needs to be a coordinated m-health / citizen scientist / open science effort aimed at wildlife health. Over the years (going all the way back to West NIle), I have seen all kinds of clever schemes suggested and some even started only to wither for lack of funding. The politics can be pretty thick (there are big economic consequences for admitting that certain widlife / livestock diseass are circulating).
My friends at InSTEDD (which is party Google-funded) have been doing some amazing work re human health surveillance in SE Asia. The same sort of effort needs to be directed toward wildlife. ***
btw, I've been trying to reach you for a while. I have what I think could be a kind of sparky use for G+. Hoped to see you at Refresh, but when that was canceled, Shay was kind enough to send me your website page with your email address. I promptly wrote, cc'ing Shay. He got it, so I'm guessing yours is stuck in a spam filter... sigh.