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ishmael
04-15-2007, 06:12 AM
All the attention paid to global warming of late has turned our focus from a much more salient issue. Large numbers of honey bees have died off over the last winter. We're talking 50 to 90 percent in the states reporting, and it's in Canada and Europe, too.

This is serious, and right in our faces.

No one knows why.

A. Einstein once remarked that if the honey bee disappeared man would be close behind. A bit strong, but of all the environmental catastrophes on the radar, this one actually has me worried.

A speculation:

http://news.independent.co.uk/environment/wildlife/article2449968.ece

Steve Paskey
04-15-2007, 06:17 AM
Thanks for raising this issue, Ish. I'm worried too, and I'm surprised this isn't getting more press.

I'm skeptical of the mobile phone theory, though, as mentioned in that link. The die-off started here, then spread to Europe, then the U.K. ... that doesn't correlate with patterns of mobile phone use.

ishmael
04-15-2007, 06:30 AM
I'm not endorsing the cell phone theory. No one knows at this point, and you're correct, the pattern doesn't fit well. But, something really big is happening with our bees. Most people don't realize just how important the little critters are.

An interview I ran across. People will decry the source, but the interview is good.

http://earthfiles.com/news/news.cfm?ID=1230&category=Environment

Plan on much higher fruit and vegetable costs--at the least. My short-sighted bastard bought a big jug of honey yesterday at the grocery. I don't do refined sugar much, and honey is a staple.

George Ray
04-15-2007, 07:59 AM
I have noticed and commented over the last MANY years that you just don't see honey bees like you used to. This latest news about colony collapse is very sad. Good Luck to all of us, bees, people and ........ everything/everybody.

Memphis Mike
04-15-2007, 08:17 AM
Man has upset the balance of nature. It's hard to tell just what we might see in the coming years.:(

S.V. Airlie
04-15-2007, 08:26 AM
Well, there are a few little tiny parasites that may not kill bees but weakens them to the point where they might die from something else.. I wonder whether there has been an increase in infestations.

Phillip Allen
04-15-2007, 08:26 AM
I've been wanting to get back into beekeeping but haven't had the opportunity yet...I've been watching developments though. I have the impression that after a massive kill-off which will remove careless keepers and casual but ignorant hobbyists, that there will be a build up again...bees are their own vector for pests and diseases...so will be self limiting.

Beach Party
04-15-2007, 11:21 AM
I have my roots in farming so have been keeping my eyes on not only this but ag issues my whole life. People had better wake up, or we are in for some very very difficult times ahead.

A variety of genetically modified corn that was approved for human consumption in 2006 caused signs of liver and kidney toxicity as well as hormonal changes in rats in a study performed by researchers from the independent Committee for Independent Research and Genetic Engineering at the University of Caen in France.

What you need to know - Conventional View
• The corn in question, MON863, is made by the Monsanto (http://www.newstarget.com/Monsanto.html) Company and approved for use in Australia, Canada, China, the European Union, Japan, Mexico, the Philippines, and the United States. It has had a gene inserted from the bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which causes the plant's cells to produce a pesticide.

• Researchers fed rats either unmodified corn (http://www.newstarget.com/corn.html) or diets containing 11 or 30 percent MON863 for 90 days. The rats who ate modified corn were found to exhibit signs of liver and kidney toxicity (http://www.newstarget.com/toxicity.html), as well as signs of hormonal changes.

• Male rats lost an average of 3.3 percent of their body weight (http://www.newstarget.com/body_weight.html), and their excretion of phosphorus and sodium decreased. Female rats gained an average of 3.7 percent of their body weight, while their triglyceride levels increased by 24 to 40 percent.

• The mechanism that causes the toxicity is not yet known, but the researchers say there is evidence that the Bt toxin may cause the perforation of blood cells. They expressed concern that the methods used by Monsanto in initial tests of the corn were statistically flawed and called their own tests "the best mammalian toxicity tests available."

• Greenpeace responded to the study by calling for an immediate recall of all MON863 corn and the reassessment of all genetically modified foods (http://www.newstarget.com/genetically_modified_foods.html) currently approved for the market.

• Quote: "Our counter-evaluation shows that there are signs of toxicity, and nobody can say scientifically and seriously the consumption of the transgenic maize MON863 is safe and good for health." - Lead Author Gilles Eric Seralini


What you need to know - Alternative View

Statements and opinions by Mike Adams, author of Grocery Warning: How to identify and avoid dangerous food ingredients (http://www.truthpublishing.com/grocerywarning.html)

• It seems that the more these GM foods (http://www.newstarget.com/GM_foods.html) are tested, the more frightening the implications seem to be for human health. When companies like Monsanto do their own in-house testing, results are mysteriously favorable in nearly all cases, but when independent labs run their own tests, the results are downright shocking.

• I find it interesting that the FDA believes U.S. consumers should not be allowed to know which foods are genetically modified and which aren't. The push for honest labeling (http://www.newstarget.com/labeling.html) of GM foods has been blockaded by corporate interests and corrupt federal regulators.


Resources you need to know

The Campaign for labeling of GM foods: http://www.thecampaign.org (http://www.thecampaign.org/)


Bottom line

• A variety of genetically modified corn was found to cause signs of hormonal changes and liver and kidney toxicity in rats.

JimM
04-15-2007, 11:22 AM
Modern agraculture relies on bee keepers that move their bees to follow the spring blossoms. Here on the West Coast, bees are moved from orchard to orchard from California to Washington and into British Columbia for wildflowers. The same process is found across the country. The migrant bee keepers have helped to spread the mites and other bee deseases across the country infecting local domestic and wild hives in thier wake.

S.V. Airlie
04-15-2007, 11:22 AM
Beach Party...and how does this relatew to bees.?

Paul Girouard
04-15-2007, 11:27 AM
Modern agraculture relies on bee keepers that move their bees to follow the spring blossoms. Here on the West Coast, bees are moved from orchard to orchard from California to Washington and into British Columbia for wildflowers. The same process is found across the country. The migrant bee keepers have helped to spread the mites and other bee deseases across the country infecting local domestic and wild hives in thier wake.

Well it only took 9 post to get to the issue , the mite that broke the worlds back. Mighty mite :confused:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/c/c3/Varroa8536.JPG

Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diseases_of_the_honey_bee

Another link : http://www.physorg.com/news91990483.html

S.V. Airlie
04-15-2007, 11:31 AM
naw.. brought them up a few posts ago... No picture though..:rolleyes:

ishmael
04-15-2007, 11:40 AM
The mites have been around for years. While they may be contributing, from what I've read this is something different and has good apiarists as well as academics scratching their heads.

Leon m
04-15-2007, 11:57 AM
My family raised bees when I was a child . I've been thinking about doing it myself lately...would that help..is there even enough supply out there?

S.V. Airlie
04-15-2007, 11:59 AM
Leonj.. I would say there was.. I mean they are raised commercially.
But keeping them going maybe another issue.
I dropped out of beekeeping.. been about 15 yrs. Have not lived in an area recently where I could keep them.

Paul Girouard
04-15-2007, 12:06 PM
My family raised bees when I was a child . I've been thinking about doing it myself lately...would that help..is there even enough supply out there?

You can try , my neighbor across the street did it for years , he gave up about 6 or7 years ago due to the mite killing off his hives . He really enjoyed it he'd help his bees up outta the grass/ clover with his hands if he'd notice one loaded up having ahard time taking off . But like I said the bee mite wiped him out once to many so he gave his hives away . You could give er a go though , just google it and I bet you find people with the stuff / supplies / etc . They are quite interesting , bee's that is , sorta like the Borg(sp) from startrek :D

ishmael
04-15-2007, 12:30 PM
They are fascinating critters. I've thought about keeping a couple hives, but I've got mild allergies. Nothing life threatening from a sting or two, but I swell up pretty bad. I suppose I'd get over it with enough occasional stings.

Grandma lost her sight in one eye after a wasp sting in the back of the neck. It turned out to be glaucoma, and the sting was either coincidental or precipitating somehow, it was never quite clear. Probably the former. The one phobia I've had in my life was to stinging insects, probably stemming from that incident. I've gotten over it, though I'm still none too fond of wasps.

Anyhoo, I hope they figure this out. Understatement! I got to be friends with a professional keeper when we were both on the road and camped in the same campground in the Keys. He didn't have his bees with him, but slung some great honey. All the serious beekeepers I've met have been interesting fellows, with more than a bit of Sam Gamgee in them. Natural rovers and raconteurs. Sweet fellows! LOL.

I imagine the current practice of traveling hives as with all disease vectors when you move critters around(including human critters), is contributing to whatever this is. May they figure it out!

glenallen
04-15-2007, 12:48 PM
Beach Party...and how does this relatew to bees.?

Monsanto and its greed inspired biotech deserves a thread of its own.
Go for it, Beach Party!

Kaa
04-15-2007, 01:14 PM
A variety of genetically modified corn that was approved for human consumption in 2006 caused signs of liver and kidney toxicity as well as hormonal changes in rats in a study performed by researchers from the independent Committee for Independent Research and Genetic Engineering at the University of Caen in France.

Link to the study, please? My agitprop detector is buzzing...

Kaa

Backfin
04-15-2007, 04:29 PM
Here is one.
http://www.springerlink.com/content/?k=MON863

How do bees relate to corn?

It's called ecology teach'.

S.V. Airlie
04-15-2007, 04:49 PM
Backfin.. other than pollenizing.. etc.. the article about biotech/gene manipulation in corn had nothing to do with bees in this instance.

Backfin
04-15-2007, 05:14 PM
That's right.

Perhaps the Sultan of the Shore Soiree was attempting to make the same connection that these folks were. Certainly the study below does not preclude the possibility that Bt can make honeybees more susceptible to tracheal mites.

http://www.gmo-safety.eu/en/safety_science/68.docu.html

Kaa
04-15-2007, 05:53 PM
Here is one.
http://www.springerlink.com/content/?k=MON863


Umm... they want $32 to look at it.

Got any other links?

Kaa

Backfin
04-15-2007, 06:06 PM
Sure, same study. :)

http://www.gmfreeireland.org/health/SeraliniPaper2007.pdf

Sam F
04-15-2007, 07:31 PM
FWIW, some publications have been printing accounts of a similar die off back in the early 1960's ,so it might be a cyclical thing with as yet unknown causes. Or perhaps its another symptom of parasitice mite syndrome.
I had a reporter contact me the other day to see if we got this in our neck of the woods - we don't - so I guess he went away unsatisfied.

Sam F
04-15-2007, 07:37 PM
Modern agraculture relies on bee keepers that move their bees to follow the spring blossoms...

If I had my way the migratory beekeepers would have to pursue other employment. They manage to spread every bee disease and pest with the most amazing efficiency.
Keep the bees local and maybe there'll be time to figure out problems before everybody has it.

George Jung
04-15-2007, 07:42 PM
If I had my way the migratory beekeepers would have to pursue other employment. They manage to spread every bee disease and pest with the most amazing efficiency.
Keep the bees local and maybe there'll be time to figure out problems before everybody has it.


Actually, don't you find it amazing that this practice hasn't been outlawed, at least until such time as this gets sorted out? I wonder if that's even been considered in Congress.

Nicholas Scheuer
04-15-2007, 07:47 PM
WITHOUT getting stung?

One of my valuable experiences; this one taught to me by another Scout.

Moby Nick

Sam F
04-15-2007, 07:54 PM
You can try , my neighbor across the street did it for years , he gave up about 6 or7 years ago due to the mite killing off his hives . He really enjoyed it ...

To bad he hadn't heard about the latest mite control techniques. Varroa in these parts are controlled by powered sugar. No joke. It works!

Kaa
04-15-2007, 08:04 PM
Sure, same study. :)

http://www.gmfreeireland.org/health/SeraliniPaper2007.pdf

I read it. I'm not all that impressed.

First, that's not a new study. It's a reassessment of a study done by Monsanto, which means all the authors of the study did was take results from the Monsanto study and play statistical games with them.

Second, there's no smoking gun and no obvious problems. There are some statistically significant differences, but given that that the rat populations were very small (20 rats/group) I wouldn't be inclined to read too much into it. Also, a bunch of effects which the authors point out were more pronounced on 11% rats (those that were fed a diet with 11% GMO) than on 33% rats (diet with 33% GMO).

All in all, it seems to me a follow-up study is worthwhile, while worldwide panic and a ban on MON863 is not.

Kaa

Beach Party
04-15-2007, 08:38 PM
I read it. I'm not all that impressed.

First, that's not a new study. It's a reassessment of a study done by Monsanto, which means all the authors of the study did was take results from the Monsanto study and play statistical games with them.

Second, there's no smoking gun and no obvious problems. There are some statistically significant differences, but given that that the rat populations were very small (20 rats/group) I wouldn't be inclined to read too much into it. Also, a bunch of effects which the authors point out were more pronounced on 11% rats (those that were fed a diet with 11% GMO) than on 33% rats (diet with 33% GMO).

All in all, it seems to me a follow-up study is worthwhile, while worldwide panic and a ban on MON863 is not.

Kaa

Meanwhile those people that are not in the back pockets of the agri giants think that genetically modified organissms with who knows what long term effets to the natural world shold be required to put up a bond, which can be used by independent scientist to eithr prove or disprove the harm done by their products- before they are released upon a benign environment, with no natural protections from what ever havoc they will reek.

I suspect you believe Monsantos claims? Would you have believed the claims of Phillip Morris, Brown Tobacco, and Ligget Myers, in 1962 as well?

paladin
04-15-2007, 08:41 PM
well...with all the wailing about honey, I went back to the amish market and bought 4 more quarts of honey. I cook with it and rarely use white sugar for anything.

Kaa
04-15-2007, 09:15 PM
Meanwhile those people that are not in the back pockets of the agri giants think that genetically modified organissms with who knows what long term effets to the natural world shold be required to put up a bond,

I don't think so, and I haven't noticed being in the back pocket of anything. But, perhaps, you know better?


I suspect you believe Monsantos claims?

Which claims? (and please provide quotes/links)

Kaa

Beach Party
04-16-2007, 11:44 AM
I don't think so, and I haven't noticed being in the back pocket of anything. But, perhaps, you know better?



Which claims? (and please provide quotes/links)

Kaa


I make it a policy not to argue with internet imbeciles who wont be swayed with anything less than a length of bulkhead shoring up aside their heads.

S.V. Airlie
04-16-2007, 11:48 AM
I make it a policy not to argue with internet imbeciles who wont be swayed with anything less than a length of bulkhead shoring up aside their heads.

Umm insults.. same insults different formite.. umm.

Kaa
04-16-2007, 11:53 AM
I make it a policy not to argue with internet imbeciles who wont be swayed with anything less than a length of bulkhead shoring up aside their heads.

So you don't talk to yourself? :D

Kaa

ishmael
04-16-2007, 11:58 AM
Back to the bees. I hope Sam and others are correct and this is some cycle of die off we don't understand but which will turn.

If you read that interview, even skilled long-term bee keepers are a bit taken aback by this. The bees are just gone!

Maybe they've gone to pluck nectar from the blow holes of dolphin.

George Roberts
04-16-2007, 12:04 PM
I heard a news report that a foreign wasp was hurting the bee population in Europe.

Sure is hard to find good news.

P.I. Stazzer-Newt
04-16-2007, 12:47 PM
Sure, same study. :)

http://www.gmfreeireland.org/health/SeraliniPaper2007.pdf

Firstly, the study does not even mention bees.
Secondly, bees do not work maize.

Nicholas Scheuer
04-16-2007, 12:50 PM
I've heard of lots of empty hives, but the reports said there were no dead bees. It looks as though they've just moved.

Moby Nick

Kaa
04-16-2007, 12:57 PM
http://instapundit.com/archives2/004182.php

Kaa

Backfin
04-16-2007, 08:34 PM
"During the flowering period the bees collected only a very small proportion of maize pollen amounting to less than three percent (both Bt and non-transgenic pollen). The maize pollen had no negative effects on the number of bees or the development of the brood in the colonies."


Bees don't work maize, but thay are exposed to it's pollen.

Beach Party injected GM crops into the discussion.
I simply pointed out that GM crops and bee mortality or lack there of has been covered by some studies.

It amazes me that even dead bees can become a political issue.

skuthorp
04-16-2007, 08:50 PM
"I've heard of lots of empty hives, but the reports said there were no dead bees. It looks as though they've just moved."

Sounds like navigation problems, sunspots? Bees have a small amount of magnetite in them and although it is thought that sight is their primary method maybe there is something in the proliferation of mobile towers. Any body heard of similar problems with homing pigeons or other migratory species?

edsr
04-18-2007, 06:15 PM
Honey bees are in the news because they represent a major factor in the production of crops. What you don't hear about are native Mason bees, who are even better pollenators than honey bees.

Mason bees find small holes, mostly in, but not limited to wood and proceed to lay their eggs then seal the opening with mud. 1/4" or 5/16" holes drilled several inches deep seem to be about ideal.

Several years ago I started a Mason bee colony by drilling holes in some scrap wood and nailing it up above my garage door out of the weather. This year the cold weather slowed things down to a crawl but with a few days of sunshine and warm weather things are in full swing.

They don't sting, but on the other hand they don't make honey either.

If you really want bees to pollinate your flowers, trees, and crops, you might look into putting up a few pieces of 2x4 with holes drilled to attract some.

My colony seems to be more active than last year so they might have dodged whatever is affecting honey bees.

edsr

ishmael
04-18-2007, 06:59 PM
Not a beekeeper. I'm interested, as we all should be, but I don't know the ins and outs.

There're a variety of reports, some including hives full of dead bees from Canada. But most of the reporting is that the hives are simply empty, friend bee having just picked up and moved? Maybe they're moving to hollow trees. If I were a bee I'd rather live in a tree than a box.

More seriously, there is something concerning here. Don't know what it is, but it has potential to seriously disrupt our ag business. When serious apiarists are losing half their hives it pricks my ears.

Phillip Allen
04-18-2007, 07:10 PM
Guys...this proof of global swarming

brad9798
04-18-2007, 07:19 PM
Absolutely! We used to catch bees right off the clover ... barehanded.

This should get more press ... but it is not as sexy or 'sellable' to voters as Miami being under water ...

Media cares only about ratings ... bees do not ratings make.

Bees go ... then we will NOT be far behind ... as the entire world ecosystem will crumble, with regard to its current dyanamics, within a few years ...

George.
04-19-2007, 07:13 AM
I heard a news report that a foreign wasp was hurting the bee population in Europe.



I thought all WASPs originated in Europe.

TimH
05-02-2007, 08:51 PM
Honeybee die-off threatens food supply

By SETH BORENSTEIN
AP SCIENCE WRITER



BELTSVILLE, Md. -- Unless someone or something stops it soon, the mysterious killer that is wiping out many of the nation's honeybees could have a devastating effect on America's dinner plate, perhaps even reducing us to a glorified bread-and-water diet.

http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/national/1501AP_Honeybee_Die_Off.html

capt jake
05-02-2007, 08:54 PM
I have a new hive inside one of my Hemlocks. Never have had honey bees on the property before.

Phillip Allen
05-03-2007, 05:40 AM
NPR had a short on the bee die-off this morning

Paul G.
05-03-2007, 06:22 AM
This is what I have found in the compost bin, all seem well. I fed em heaps of honey when they first arrived

http://www.pathfinder.orcon.net.nz/images/bees.jpg

Phillip Allen
05-03-2007, 06:25 AM
nice healthy looking colony...new white comb...not much capped that I can see

Tealsmith
05-03-2007, 08:40 AM
It might be my fault. I've been paying my kid 5 cents a piece to kill carpenter bees with a tennis racket. He's made forty cents so far.

Henning 4148
05-03-2007, 02:34 PM
Haven't seen a lot in north Germany so far this year, although it was pretty warm. Better to say - have hardly seen any, if at all. We will see. A few potatoes should still be in the diet.

TimH
05-03-2007, 02:41 PM
Last year we had a plethora of Yellow Jackets. They were everywhere and attacked a bunch of riders/horses while on a horseback ride.

The Bigfella
05-08-2007, 04:49 AM
It was news here a day or two back that we are exporting large numbers of bees from here to replenish both European and American stocks.

sawcutmill
05-08-2007, 06:31 AM
BEES - In 2005, for the first time in 85 years, the United States was forced to import honeybees in order to meet its pollination demands. The past year in America, at least 22 states have reported honey bee disappearances. "If honeybees numbers continued to decline at the rates documented from 1989 to 1996, managed honeybees ... will cease to exist in the United States by 2035." "We believe that some form of stress may be suppressing immune systems of bees, ultimately contributing to CCD." The main four types of stresses identified were migratory stresses, mites, pathogens and pesticides.

MARYLAND - BEES - Washington County is number one in the state for orchard production, so while the disappearing of the bees may not cause a big problem yet, experts say it could pose a major issue for crops in the future. "Washington County is very interested in the health of honey bees as far as pollinating apples, and peaches and so on. We don't see trees without apples, but we're seeing decline in the yield, so that is a concern." Nationwide “honey bee populations have been declining from viruses and tracheal mites. In other words, infesting colonies.” It's called “Colony Collapse Disorder” and it's cropping up all over the country. Scientists don't know where the parasites come from, but they believe humans have helped them become so widespread by moving the hives all over the country.

SPAIN, PORTUGAL - BEES - honey bees have been disappearing in huge numbers in Spain and Poland. Adding to the European mystery is that Spain has very large commercial beekeeper operations with at least 3 million colonies of honey bees, similar to the United States. But Poland’s 400,000 hives are largely raised on individual farms where smaller bee colonies are separated from each other. If the answer were disease, you would not expect Poland’s separated hives to be plagued by large numbers of honey bee disappearances as in Spain and the United States. The two European countries with the largest honey bee populations are France and Italy. It might be significant that those two countries banned certain pesticides in recent years when beekeepers there became convinced that systemic pesticides were killing off honey bees. And so far, neither France nor Italy has yet reported the collapse of honey bee hives.

BRITAIN - MOTHS - Research suggests that two-thirds of the nation's larger moth species have declined over the past four decades. "Moths represent the hidden wealth of wildlife on all our doorsteps. We must reverse these declines. If we don't, the outlook is grim. The consequences for Britain's wildlife would be too dire to contemplate. Without moths, plants would not be pollinated and our garden birds would go hungry." Last year, a study suggested that moth populations in the UK were in rapid decline. However, it was not able to pinpoint the reason behind the insects' demise but suggested that the main suspects were habitat destruction, pesticides, pollution and climate change.

Sam F
05-08-2007, 11:50 AM
On other bit of information - according to the latest issue of Bee Culture magazine, hives afflicted with CCD (Colony Collapse Disorder) have tended to be in close proximity to certain crops. Those crops (rape seed, corn, etc.) are now often treated with systemic insecticides. "Systemic" means the whole plant is poisonous. The possibility is that the bees are picking up sub-lethal doses in pollen and when that pollen is fed to young bees they are damaged by the contamination. This is very tentative of course so other explanations may be forthcoming.

George Jung
05-08-2007, 12:54 PM
I'm wondering what 'systemic' pesticides are being used - and also, would Bt corn qualify under this heading? I've asked some local agronomists, and none have indicated any knowledge concerning potential toxicity to bees from this product; but they also don't seem to know who to ask. I'd think this product would have had to pass some hurdles before being released. Nothing in the news that I've seen, however.

capt jake
05-08-2007, 01:24 PM
I finally found a lady to come and collect the hive that has taken up residence here. I hope to see her today. The process of removal may take 2-4 weeks, she says. At least they will have a new home and not be exterminated!

skuthorp
05-08-2007, 04:08 PM
Listened to a program about this yesterday. Aus has exported 50,000 bees, including queens to the US but up to 25% have been lost to the problem in the first week. Local science seems to think that it's tied up with immune system failure. We don't have the problem as yet. I'll try to find a link.

Beach Party
05-08-2007, 04:39 PM
Firstly, the study does not even mention bees.
Secondly, bees do not work maize.


First off, its not "maize" its corn.

Second of all you either are totally clueless or you pretending you know something you dont. We kept honey bees for a number of years to pollinate our curcurbits. They worked the sweet corn tassles as soon as they starting throwing pollen. Theyd load up with pollen and fly back to the hive and come back for more.

I know first hand of what I speak so dont try to tell me different.

ishmael
05-08-2007, 04:51 PM
25% in a week! doesn't sound like an immune system problem, but I'm no expert. I wonder what typical die off rates in transport that distance are. From what I've read farmers and bee keepers aren't doing anything they haven't done for years, but maybe Sam is on to something.

Thanks for the bees, OZ!

I haven't heard any real news about this in weeks and the pollination season is upon us. According to the local news the Maine blueberry growers are worried. They import thousands of hives every year for the flowering of the bushes, which must be only a few weeks away.

I'm not much an alarmist, but this is truly concerning.

PeterSibley
05-08-2007, 04:53 PM
It apears to be more than varoa mite ,New Zealand has the mite ,we haven't as yet .It appears to cause a lot of damage ,but not an instant dieoff .As for mobile phones ...well we have those and our bee are just fine ,in areas with water anyway .Our beekeepers are worried waiting for the mite to arrive , but doing well ( those with honey ) at $800 a drum for honey .

It seems possible that some new insectide being used for the mite is not working as required .From what I've heard the bees are just disappearing ? Something affecting their navigational abilities ? Possibley a new chemical miticide ?

Phillip Allen
05-08-2007, 05:00 PM
First off, its not "maize" its corn.

Second of all you either are totally clueless or you pretending you know something you dont. We kept honey bees for a number of years to pollinate our curcurbits. They worked the sweet corn tassles as soon as they starting throwing pollen. Theyd load up with pollen and fly back to the hive and come back for more.

I know first hand of what I speak so dont try to tell me different.

bees don't work corn...yes and no...when in search of pollen they will get it anywhere they can (often from trees in early spring) but once the honey flow starts (think nectar) they will pretty much quit gathering large amounts of pollen. By the time the honey flow starts here, the brood rearing is beginning to decend onto "maintaince" mode and it's too late to raise more workers to gather nectar. It's a priority thing...if nectar (not available from corn) is available the bees will "default" to gather it before pollen.

Phillip Allen
05-08-2007, 05:04 PM
sitting here and thinking about it...when we grow huge fields of crops we think of as bee forage, we may foget the virge provides resins, pollen and perhaps more. If the corporate farms remove virge roughage they may be doing harm to the bees.

peb
05-08-2007, 06:22 PM
sitting here and thinking about it...when we grow huge fields of crops we think of as bee forage, we may foget the virge provides resins, pollen and perhaps more. If the corporate farms remove virge roughage they may be doing harm to the bees.

Here we go on the corporate farm kick again. At any rate, large scale farmers do not remove the crop residue from the field, unless it is a crop grown for the forage (eg hay). You take the grain and leave everything else.

And where are all of these corporate farms? Outside dairy, poultry, and some pork, can someone show me a publicly traded farm? They have to be on a stock exchange somewhere. You guys always mention them, I can't find them.

I know of some very large family farms, which are typically incorporated. But that is not what ya'll are always referring to.

Phillip Allen
05-08-2007, 06:25 PM
Don't gripe at me Peb...I'm just trying to think...

peb
05-08-2007, 06:34 PM
Don't gripe at me Peb...I'm just trying to think...

Phillip, fair enough. Sorry about that.



SamF, as to your systematic pesticides, I am not for sure what you are talking about. It sounds kind of like the some genetically modifications being done which would make the plant its own insecticide. I didn't think that these GM seeds had hit the market yet, but I could be wrong. Of course GM plants that are resistant to certain herbicides (eg RoundUp Ready corn ) have been in wide spread use for years.

But a pesticide that would make the whole plant poisonous? I am not up to speed on pesticides, where I come from we don't have that much bug problems. Maybe, any information?

Phillip Allen
05-08-2007, 06:49 PM
When I kept bees I would locate hives in places where I could spread a bed sheet in front. I then examped the dead bees watching for anything unusual. I was even able to discover when my drones had been mating new queens...if the bees are not returning to the colony at all it is very odd...a sick bee is eected forcably by her sisters. If they die in the hive, they will be dropped in front of the hive only a few feet...

capt jake
05-09-2007, 07:09 PM
Well, I finally found somebody willing to come collect the bees and take them some place else. I was amazed at the responses to 'mortar them in the tree and let them die'!

Nice lady. Says it may take 2-4 weeks if all goes well. :) She taped a funnel contraption to the crack in the tree and place a hose on that, guiding them to the bee box (or whatever it's called).

I even got to make here some new pieces for her bee boxes. At least I got to make some sawdust during the process.
http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid225/p567b4c610eb3a9e854712b3a681e14b9/e994b82f.jpg
http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid225/pa691043cbddba122c904e070a2bb4d53/e994b826.jpg
http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid225/ped37b5033b55ef9c420f729d9435fb18/e994b823.jpg

Now what to do with this Hemlock that is obviously rotten on the inside.:confused: It's a big buggar and no real good place to drop it.

Phillip Allen
05-09-2007, 07:37 PM
I've done that before...it's easy enough but takes a lot of time

Sam F
05-09-2007, 09:57 PM
SamF, as to your systematic pesticides, I am not for sure what you are talking about. ...But a pesticide that would make the whole plant poisonous? I am not up to speed on pesticides, where I come from we don't have that much bug problems. Maybe, any information?

Systemics are a class of insecticides that are absorbed into the plant and makes it toxic to insects feeding on it. They’re most effective with sucking insects like aphids that don’t feed on the surface and thus will ingest very little if any spray that’s a conventional stomach poison.
Ages ago when I managed a nursery, systemics were fairly popular with ornamentals but supposedly banned on food crops. Unfortunately that wasn’t true. My wife's aunt, who sold bedding plants in PA regularly used systemics on annuals and vegetables. In veggies, that's a real no-no since these things are for human consumption. I've also seen systemics used on brassicas when I worked in Louisiana back in the 70's. To say the least this is HIGHLY unethical and dangerous.
I have a personal experience with that too but on an ornamental… I used Isotox on a Holly fern (Cyrtomium falcatum) that had a scale infestation. Back in those days Isotox contained Lindane (now banned) and that stuff basically mutated the plant. What had been single stemmed leaves started to fork! So this is not nice stuff!
From Bee Culture May 2007 pg 18:
Beekeepers that have been most affected so far have been close to corn, cotton, soybeans, canola, sunflowers, apples, vine crops and pumpkins. In conversation with farmers, growers and seed and spray company representatives I have learned that there has been a big change in the pesticides used to treat these crops. From what I have learned so far, I am convinced that neonicotinoids may play a roll in CCD and exposure to these materials… I think that the reason neonicotinoids may be so damaging to honey bees is that they are found in fairly low “sub-lethal” levels in pollen and nectar of the plants. The field bees often do not die when working plants treated with these products. Instead they may bring the pollen and nectar back to the hive and store it in their comb to use later. The young bees raised on this (contaminated) food may exhibit memory loss and impaired immune response, Of course these symptoms appear several months after exposure to neonicotinoids and up until recently the cause of effect appeared unrelated.
The article also mentioned the following as possible culprits:
Pesticides based on imidacloprid with brand names of Confidor, Merit, Admore, Legend, Provado, Encore, Gaucho, Premise.
And pesticides based on thiamoxetham – brand names of Actara, Platinum, Helix, Cruiser, Adage, Meridan, Centric, Flagship.
And Clothianidin - brand named Poncho, Titan, Clutch, Belay, Arean.
And thiacloprid brand Calypso
And dinotegruan.

Keep in mind that this is still a tentative conclusion. It may well turn out to be wrong…

George.
05-10-2007, 05:59 AM
Yup... let the population keep growing. Don't worry - miraculous modern agriculture, with its pesticides and high fuel use, will stave off Malthusian starvation. :rolleyes:

George Ray
05-10-2007, 06:35 AM
POGO: "we have met the enemy and he is us."

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/4/49/Pogo_-_Earth_Day_1971_poster.jpg/300px-Pogo_-_Earth_Day_1971_poster.jpg
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pogo