Tag Archive | bees

“28% of US bees wiped out this winter, suggesting bigger environmental issues”

‘This suggests there is something more going on – bees may be the canary in the coal mine of bigger environmental problems.’

Link

More than a quarter of American honeybee colonies were wiped out over the winter, with deadly infestations of mites and harmful land management practices heaping mounting pressure upon the crucial pollinators and the businesses that keep them.

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Could Beer Save The Honeybees?

http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2015/10/21/3714501/beer-for-bees/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=cptop3

The fight to save honeybees has gotten boosts recently from the USDA, the White House, andresearchers who are still working to determine why managed honeybees continue to die off. Now, bees have one more thing on their side: beer.

Or, at least, one of the main ingredients of beer. This week, the EPA approved the use of potassium salts of hops beta acids (HBAs) — a biochemical (or naturally-occurring) pesticide that’s derived from hops, the flowers of the plant Humulus lupulus — around honeycombs. Researchhas shown that HBAs have potential for repelling varroa mites, a dangerous mite that attaches itself to honeybees and sucks out their circulatory fluid. Varroa mites weaken bees and spread debilitating diseases, including deformed wing virus, which causes crumpled up, useless wings in young bees.

“Lock Up Your Bees: Insects Are the Assets to Steal as Almond Prices Soar”

 

Bees used to pollinate almond trees.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-09-23/lock-up-your-bees-pollinator-in-chief-snatched-as-almonds-soar

The world’s most valuable pollinator is under attack.

Bees, responsible for an estimated $15 billion of crop output in the U.S. alone, play an essential role in almond production. With the nut fetching record prices, the insects have become the asset to own — or steal — in Australia’s biggest almond-producing region.

“UK suspends ban on pesticides linked to serious harm in bees”

stopkillingbees

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jul/23/uk-suspends-ban-pesticides-linked-serious-harm-bees?CMP=EMCENVEML1631

Farmers will be able to use blacklisted pesticides linked to serious harm in bees after the UK government temporarily lifted an EU ban.

” When Humans Are Forced To Replace The Bees They Killed”

chinesepollination

Link

Since insecticides have killed most bees in China’s Sichuan province, local farmers are forced to fertilize the flowers themselves. But the “bee-men” may now be a dying breed.

According to the scientist, rapid wage growth could discourage farmers from resorting to hand-pollination. Travelling beekeepers renting out their bees could replace the “bee-men,” on the condition that residents accept to decrease their use of toxic agents.

 

“Pesticides halve bees’ pollen gathering ability, research shows”

ee collects pollen from a cherry tree in village Studencice, Slovenia

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/jan/29/bees-pollen-pesticides-ban?CMP=EMCENVEML1631

Bumblebees exposed to controversial pesticides collect just half the pollen they would otherwise harvest, according to new research, depriving their growing young of their only source of protein.

Pesticide manufacturers argue that controlled studies do not replicate actual field conditions.

lightbulblogo

For “actual field conditions” read “less pollen means less food for bees, so less bees to pollinate flowers, so less flowers, so less pollen, so less food for bees… etc”

Why would anyone want to risk replicating this dangerous negative feedback cycle in the field given the real consequences?