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The latest assault on honeybees

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The latest assault on honeybees

Postby rabble » Mon Mar 29, 2010 12:11 pm

Bees face 'unprecedented' pesticide exposures at home and afield

SAN FRANCISCO For years the news has been the same: Honey bees are being hammered by some mysterious environmental plague that has a name -- colony collapse disorder – but no established cause. A two-year study now provides evidence indicting one likely group of suspects: pesticides. It found “unprecedented levels” of mite-killing chemicals and crop pesticides in hives across the United States and parts of Canada.

The worker bee goes out, picks up pollen containing residual chemicals and brings it back to the hive where it goes into the wax. This goes on until prolonged exposure causes her to either drop dead en route or forget how to get back home.
The researchers have several suspicions why the bees looked cleaner than their dwellings. In some cases, detoxifying systems within the bees might have broken down the chemicals, fostering their excretion. But an even likelier explanation: The sampling focused primarily on live bees extracted from the hives. These tended to be the queens, brood nurses and adolescents – hive residents that aren’t on the chemical frontlines, foraging in pesticide treated fields. Indeed, the fact that researchers found so few healthy worker bees in many of the hives from which they received samples suggests that sickened foragers probably die before they get home.
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby Shorty » Thu Apr 22, 2010 4:01 pm

Pesticides should be banned.
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby green union terrace chair » Thu Apr 22, 2010 5:55 pm

Shorty wrote:Pesticides should be banned.


Pesiticides should be used in moderation.
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby KidCapitol » Tue May 04, 2010 8:47 pm

green union terrace chair wrote:
Shorty wrote:Pesticides should be banned.


Pesiticides should be used in moderation.

Even in moderation those poisons will still cause harm.
And if the bees go, then so do we since crops will no longer be pollinated.

Pesticides need to be banned. Period. Case closed.

If anyone uses pesticides or any other poisons on their yard or lawn or wherever, they are part of the problem, not part of the solution.

So what do you want to be? Part of the problem or part of the solution?
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby Remember_Me » Thu Jul 01, 2010 10:28 am

I thought it was cell phones killing all the bees? At least that's the latest "buzz":

London, England (CNN) -- A new study has suggested that cell phone radiation may be contributing to declines in bee populations in some areas of the world.

Bee populations dropped 17 percent in the UK last year, according to the British Bee Association, and nearly 30 percent in the United States says the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Parasitic mites called varroa, agricultural pesticides and the effects of climate change have all been implicated in what has been dubbed "colony collapse disorder" (CCD).

But researchers in India believe cell phones could also be to blame for some of the losses.

In a study at Panjab University in Chandigarh, northern India, researchers fitted cell phones to a hive and powered them up for two fifteen-minute periods each day.

After three months, they found the bees stopped producing honey, egg production by the queen bee halved, and the size of the hive dramatically reduced.

It's not just the honey that will be lost if populations plummet further. Bees are estimated to pollinate 90 commercial crops worldwide. Their economic value in the UK is estimated to be $290 million per year and around $12 billion in the U.S.

Andrew Goldsworthy, a biologist from the UK's Imperial College, London, has studied the biological effects of electromagnetic fields. He thinks it's possible bees could be affected by cell phone radiation.

The reason, Goldsworthy says, could hinge on a pigment in bees called cryptochrome.

"Animals, including insects, use cryptochrome for navigation," Goldsworthy told CNN.

"They use it to sense the direction of the earth's magnetic field and their ability to do this is compromised by radiation from [cell] phones and their base stations. So basically bees do not find their way back to the hive."

Goldsworthy has written to the UK communications regulator OFCOM suggesting a change of phone frequencies would stop the bees being confused.

"It's possible to modify the signal coming from the [cell] phones and the base station in such a way that it doesn't produce the frequencies that disturb the cryptochrome molecules," Goldsworthy said.


Read More...
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby Remember_Me » Thu Jul 01, 2010 10:33 am

KidCapitol wrote:
Pesticides need to be banned. Period. Case closed.

If anyone uses pesticides or any other poisons on their yard or lawn or wherever, they are part of the problem, not part of the solution.

So what do you want to be? Part of the problem or part of the solution?


Sooo.. are you a 100% organic proponent then? If so, what are the advantages of being completely organic? How do you produce high yield crops to feed an ever-expanding world population without pesticide use?

I'd love to hear your explanation.
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby minicat » Thu Jul 01, 2010 11:17 am

Arguments such as this thread essentially show the future of the human race. We're gonna die, and we're gonna take everything else out with us.
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby Remember_Me » Thu Jul 01, 2010 11:26 am

minicat wrote:
We're gonna die, and we're gonna take everything else out with us.


Along comes Debbie Downer...

Image
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby geoffel » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:24 pm

There seem to be three elements involved in this disaster. Mites, lack of diversity in the food sources for the bees and pesticides. We need to take action to preserve this species and its subspecies. The mass monoculture farming these animals are supposed to support are in and of themselves a threat to the bees themselves because the food sources they are exposed to are minimal (think about eating nothing but oatmeal every day) and intuitively this is thought to fail to develop their immune systems appropriately. In addition, this artificial ecosystem exposes them further to massive pesticide application, which cannot possibly be good for them. The following ideas are not a solution, but rather an interim and emergency set of measures to limit the permanent harm done to us agriculturally.

I propose that we (insofar as is necessary) subsidize the development of urban hives tended by humans. Furthermore, I propose that we take whatever actions are necessary to develop wild bee colonies in National Parks, National Forests and other wilderness areas.

In a Sycamore tree in front of my house, in a hollow within it, a beehive thrived for many years until the opening into this hollow closed in the natural course of the life of that tree. When the entry hole was very narrow, near the end of this process, the bees became very tiny, but there were still thousands of them operating from that hive. It was almost like visible evolution occuring in front of my eyes. That colony was healthy and apparently not stressed by the stressors enumerated above.

I believe those bees were living in an ecosystem free of heavy pesticide use (I live in the City of St. Louis), and abundant in the variety of blooms they could visit, both the types found in urban dwellers gardens, but also the wild flowers found in parks and all sorts of other areas, and included even those darned dandelions. The National Parks and other wild places would afford zero or almost zero exposure to pesticides as well as providing great variety in food sources for the bees. The cost of such programs to ensure the survival of the honey bees would be miniscule.

Our species faces great challenges for our very survival and in the drumbeat of the current extinction event (mostly thanks to us) our names will come up. But if we let the honey bees go away, we're in really big doo-doo very quickly.
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby gargantua » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:30 pm

We''re all going to die?

Why wasn't I told?
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby rabble » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:33 pm

One expert is of the opinion that we have bred our bees to be so tractable that bee suits aren't necessary any more and in so doing we have also bred out their ability to fight off pests and pesticides.
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Re: The latest assault on honeybees

Postby rabble » Mon Aug 19, 2013 1:51 pm

Someone has finally hit on the brilliant idea that probably occurred to everybody when someone came up with the notion that bees, long bred to be more tractable, have gotten too wussified to fight off parasites.

Interbreed 'em with killer bees!
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