Beekeepers try to keep bees — and livelihoods — from going extinct

    An interesting piece from the Washington Post about the lengths that some beeks are having to go to help their colonies. Obsessing over bee health was unheard of 50 years ago, said Marla Spivak, a University of Minnesota professor of entomology. “In the past, it was very easy to keep bees. Throw them in a box, and they …

FUD from the Grain Farmers of Ontario

FUD /fəd/, noun fear, uncertainty and doubt, usually evoked intentionally in order to put a competitor at a disadvantage. The Grain Farmers of Ontario have been very vocal opponents of Ontario’s recently approved and soon to be implemented restrictions on the neonicotinoid pesticide seed treatments. If you listen to their argument, it’s going to mean the end of grain farming …

Report: Bees may get hooked on neonicotinoid pesticides

File this under “I don’t even …” Bees may be getting hooked on nectar laced with widely used nicotine-related chemicals in pesticides they cannot even taste, in the same way humans are addicted to cigarettes, new research has found. Adding to evidence of potential harm from the chemicals, another field-scale study published on Wednesday also found that exposure to so-called …

Don’t Go With the Flow, Go With the Wax (A Few Words on Saving the Bees … and Us)

I’ve had a very difficult time with the Flow™ hive. It’s awe-inspiring to see someone take a project that they’ve obviously poured their blood, sweat and tears into and see it not only get funded, but exceed the ask by more than 100x. But, I’ve had this vague uneasiness that’s been incredibly difficult for me to put into words: plastic frames …

Chemical Weapon or Bee Poop?

It sounds like two extreme ends of a continuum, but that’s really the debate: In 1981 the Vietnam War was over, for the United States, but it looked to the world like the Cold War was still being fought in Southeast Asia, and it had a nasty new wrinkle. The Soviets were spraying Vietnam and Laos with something that left odd …

More than half of Ontario honey bee colonies died last winter

Jeez, what a slaughter. 58% of them gone. I don’t think that banning neonicotinoid pesticides is THE answer, though. It’s an important step, but there’s no way that pesticides are completely reponsible for this. If anyone needs more proof that the industry must change their practices, this is it. More than half of Ontario honey bee colonies died last winter: report …

Another Silent Spring? | George Monbiot

George Monbiot writes in The Guardian: Here’s our choice. We wait and see whether a class of powerful pesticides, made by Bayer and Syngenta, is indeed pushing entire ecosystems to oblivion, or we suspend their use while proper trials are conducted. The natural world versus two chemical companies: how hard can this be? via Another Silent Spring? | George Monbiot.