Chems are not the reason for bee loss-apparently

Apparently bee colony loss is not as a result of our use of insecticides.

See below



The article still mentions pesticides as part of the spectrum of suspected problems.

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Yes, the now outlawed practice of coating seeds with systemic pesticides has also been a problem with commercial bee colonies esp. with corn in the Midwest.

Did I miss something? I am about 95% sure that they are still coating corn and soywith clothianidin and thiamethoxam here. I can find current labels for Poncho/Votivo and Cruiser MAXX, respectively. I believe there was a ban in Europe, but nothing that I know of here in the US. (Or it was nixed by a change in EPA priorities in Feb.)

Edit: here is an article that summarizes the most recent court case. Agency to Review Neonic Seed Coatings

Now that’s a real possibility.


What I got from the article was that the bees were adapting and self selecting for the “ankle chewing” bees that we’re becoming a larger percentage of the hive population. These attack the mites.

And additionally that in Europe where the hive decline started 15 years before it hits us here, the “ankle chewers” were a greater percentage of the population than in our hives,but that our hives were adapting too.

That was the good news .

As to the mention of insecticides, the one mention was that we were using chems to “kill a bug on a bug”. That did not seem to implicate the chems in the killing of bees but rather that we were using chems to kill the mites that we’re killing the bees.

To me the overall thrust of the article was that mother nature solves problems on her own but on a different time scale. That does not mean that we should not try to take corrective action, but rather that we need to also widen our field of view to try and discern larger patterns to learn from.


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I think the expert opinion is that there are many factors and the mites are just one piece of the puzzle. Its more about cumulative stress. They have a good link to the official site which has a nice on-line survey results tool:

You can see for example that amongst commercial growers mites are just one factor, they don’t stand out: