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  1. #41
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    {If I may do my best to quote Dr. Marion Ellis in a causual conversation: "If we had never treated we would already be past all these problems with mites and diseases. The resitant bees would have survived and we wouldn't need to treat." I think that's exactly where we would be if every beekeeper didn't invervene with meds.}

    Yes but we are jumping over the biological sequence of why and how these diseases and pest exist and thrive. The course in nature is for the population of any given host to build until it becomes overpopulated. Typically what ever disease or pest, will grow with that host to the point when overpopulation occurs and the disease or pest peaks there and causes a population collapse, starting a new population cycle. We see this in virutally every living population at every level. Humans are the exeption (at least for know) due to our technology. If AFB, Mites, etc had been eliminated through natural selection we would be dealing with new threats due to our induced overpopulation of the species. This whole concept whether induced naturally or artifically is an endless row of domino's. Unfortunately we often don't look far enough down the line to see what domino's may fall in the future before acting.

  2. #42
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    I think you comments on disease and pests in overpopulated species are good, Joel, but I think you should reconsider humans. Humans have experienced cycles of disease just like other species. Think of bubonic plague, smallpox, some strains of influenza, malaria, and maybe HIV now, for a few. Populations fall after these outbreaks of these diseases. We go through the same cycles as other species.

  3. #43
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    >> "mother nature is the ultimate capitalist"

    [img]smile.gif[/img]

    >>what is RAFB?

    Resistant American Foulbrood,

    >>What are you going to kill all your RR weeds with but some other foul,

    As I said, anyother broadleaf will control a RR broadleaf plant. So, there is no difference in the plant, other than it doesnt die when sprayed by roundup,..


    >>polluting chemical that will get into watercourses and kill fish, persist in the environment and cause more problems for your grandchildren?

    Think about than next time you flush your waste down the drain, as our belovid cities are pumping straight into the rivers, lakes, and oceans?
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  4. #44
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    <Think about than next time you flush your waste down the drain, as our belovid cities are pumping straight into the rivers, lakes, and oceans?>


    Ian,

    While I aggre with much of what you say, this is not true, at least for larger cities in the United States where tertiary water treatment is practiced. The primary threat to watersheds in my area (the Chesepeake and Delaware) comes from the water run-off of the surrounding environs, and far upstream. It is always a good idea to modernize water treatment facilities, but this is not as necessary as in large cities as it is in many smaller townships and suburbs. The problem with many farms is that they import grain, export pigs, chicken and cattle, but keep the manure. This results in a net accumulation of nutrients. The issue, as I see it is three-fold:

    1) we need to provide "buffer zones" of undeveloped land around the waterways to slow water runoff, and filter its content

    2) We need to re-enact and enforce the clean water act (I don't know what the Canadian equivelent is) to prevent industrial pollution.

    3) Manure derived nutrients should either be either shipped back to grain producing regions or else incorperated into the soil within 24 hours of spreading.

    Naturally, it also makes sense to locate livestock and farms close to grain production, but this cannot be done without relocating farmers and shipping food long distances (which will cause a loss of quality for liquid milk and produce). The extensive shipping of animals is hazardous and stressful for animals/people and an excellent way to spread disease.

    I don't run anything, but if I did, those are some changes that I'd like to make

  5. #45
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    "mother nature is the ultimate capitalist"

    It's been said that ecology is the economics of Nature. Ecology definitely seems to run on a "devil take the hindmost" philosophy. I mean, you just don't see a lot of trout saying "that mosquito looks sick, I'll just let her recuperate".

  6. #46
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    >>at least for larger cities in the United States where tertiary water treatment is practiced

    I am commenting on a situation you are aware of down there, as I am not. But let me assume the treatment facilities are to steralize bacterias from the waters and settle out the sedements. You forget to acknoledge the solubles in the water, which cant be treated out, in any fassion. (unless you are talking one of those fancy greenhouse water perification units like found in Calafornia). It is the solubles which are causing us the concern.


    >>>>The problem with many farms is that they import grain, export pigs, chicken and cattle, but keep the manure.


    Our local conservation district is studding exacly on agricultures influence on the water nutient pollution. Five year studdy, working off of 15 or so years of historical land use data. The early results are showing significat results. Even to the extreem where natural virgin land has released more pollutant in the water in form of solubles and colliforms than conventially farmed land. But not consistantly. Lots to learn yet,

    At least we are trying to use the maures produced onthe farms for useful fertilizers. Why isnt there the same focus on the cities waste, where do you think it all goes?
    The city of Winnipeg produces more liquid waste than the hog barns in "hog province" Manitoba. Yet the hog barns in our province manage thier manure as a nutirent fert. Winnipeg pumps right into the red river, and burries the solids in a lnad fill,..
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  7. #47
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    [I think you should reconsider humans]

    Agreed I didn't make that part of the point very well. I'm just making the observation that in modern times we don't get the full impact due to our drugs. Some are saying the Bird Flu may change that perspective.

  8. #48
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    <You forget to acknoledge the solubles in the water, which cant be treated out, in any fassion>

    Tertiary water treatment is the process of doing just this, so that the water can be rendered fit for human consumption. Secondary treatment produces "gray water" which has been oxgenized and aerated. Some nutrients may remain, many volitalize off as ammonia or are removed in the form of bacteria. Some but not all PO4 is released into rivers etc. Hog barns typically practice primary treatment if anything. This consists of separating the solids from the liquids. What is done with these to fractions depends on the area. In some cases, the solids simply accumulate until a flood washes out the lagoon. Better farms ship the stuff away for composting and treatment as descibed above. Nutrients can be removed from water without have to resort to capitol intensive technologies such as reverse osmosis or methane generators. Straw bales, aeration and composting are adequate for many small farms. These issues have been studied in eastern PA for 20+ years, and yes there is always much to learn, but it is wrong to say that nothing can be done about water quality now. Also I would propose the following regarding cities. Is it environmentally better to have our population concentrated into small areas with excellent infrastructure, or spread out over all creation with billions on septic tanks assciated with billions of isolated houses. To simply say that there are too many people is equivelent to saying that farmers don't really want to sell food. When pundits say that the Earth is polluted and overpopulated, they often mean, "there are too many people except for me" or "I favor public transportation for other people" We have the technology, science and capitol to improve the enviroment NOW. We really want to see another catastrophe like the Cod fishery collapse or the destruction of the Cheseapeake. As for Avian Flu, PA had two nearly state-wide outbreaks in the 90's. We've known about deaths in the S.E. for decades. This is nothing new.

  9. #49
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    Jon K,
    >Since bee larvae eat pollen, and caterpillars fed Bt pollen died from the insecticidal proteins, I imagine Bt corn pollen would be pretty hard on bees.

    Glad you spotted that one. It didn't seem to have occurred to the GM proponents at the BBKA 2002 conference. And as far as I can tell, the science has never been done with full colonies over a number of seasons.

    >isn't adding a bacterial gene to corn or a fish gene to tomatoes or whatever just choosing traits that might get moved by natural processes anyway?

    Pray tell by what marvel a gene in a fish might, by natural means, find itself in the genome of a tomato? I am not aware that Monsanto has yet produced a tomato that can swim, or a fish that invades greenhouses; nor do they - as far as I know - share any viral infections, so how could it happen?

    And even if it could, it would be small scale and localised, unlike the praries sown with GM crops.

    >I think everyone agrees that a bee naturally resistant to Varroa would be an ideal solution to the mite problem. What if we could add a gene (GM, or "unnatural resistance") to honey bees that would make them resistant to Varroa? Would anyone use the bees in their operations?

    Me? No way. For a start, Monsanto/whoever would charge an arm and a leg for the queens and they would want a royalty for every egg laid! And God help you if you found some of their drones had found their way into one of your colonies without paying them their cut. Look what happened to Percy Schmeiser, whose fields were contaminated with Monsanto's Round-Up Ready Canola. http://www.percyschmeiser.com/
    The Barefoot Beekeeper http://www.biobees.com

  10. #50
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    >> Better farms ship the stuff away for composting and treatment as descibed above.

    Dont know of anyone who ships animal waste off for treatment,

    You dont actually beleive livestock farms treat the manure, do you? It is usually handled and applied to the soil as a fert, just as it is. Anything that is settled out of the liquid holding tank is aggitated, so the tank cleans out.


    >>the solids simply accumulate until a flood washes out the lagoon.

    How many hog farms have you been on? Cant beleive you actually believe this crap!! You are way out to lunch on this,..


    >>To simply say that there are too many people is equivelent to saying that farmers don't really want to sell food.

    Not saying that,
    I am saying, it is far easier to point and blame something other than ourselves,


    >>Tertiary water treatment
    >>Secondary treatment produces "gray water"

    HOw many cities do you know of that reuses their graywater?

    And this process doesnt rid of the solubles either,
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  11. #51
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    >>yet produced a tomato that can swim, or a fish that invades greenhouses;

    YOu know better than that buckbee,. [img]smile.gif[/img]


    >>Percy Schmeiser, whose fields were contaminated with Monsanto's Round-Up Ready Canola.

    I dont like the grip Agra business has gotten on the farming community. But, they spent the money on research and development, they are entitled to what ever fee they please when selling thier product. They arent doing anything illegal, thanks to our govronment.

    But old Percy, isnt all that innocent. If he had the seed blown off a neighbours truck, into his field from the road, to sew his entire field, uniformly, then well what the hell am I doing with a seeder!!
    He forgets to mention, that he was using the seed, and performing the actions, just as if knew he had that seed in his field.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  12. #52
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    >I dont like the grip Agra business has gotten on the farming community. But, they spent the money on research and development, they are entitled to what ever fee they please when selling thier product. They arent doing anything illegal, thanks to our govronment.

    So you're happy for them to buy up whole University research departments, refuse to publish their research data, dominate the world seed markets and force others out of business, charge farmers in third world countries to buy their seed every year instead of saving their own, contaminate vasts tracts of countryside with largely untested products, pollute organic farms with unwanted genetic material - just so long as they don't do anything 'illegal' according to the USDA, which they largely own?
    The Barefoot Beekeeper http://www.biobees.com

  13. #53
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    < How many hog farms have you been on? >

    Actually, quite a few, in multiple countries. All have been profitable operations producing over 22 pigs per sow. Take a look at how hogs are raised in the Netherlands where land is in short supply and the whole country is a watershed. Its a real eye opener. If by "solubles" you mean phosphate and ammonia or urea, yes they can be removed.

    <Dont know of anyone who ships animal waste off for treatment,>

    Welcome to the future. Liquid manure holding tanks were rare 50 years ago.


    Refer back to my first posting on requirements for incorperating manure into the soil within 24 hours of spreading. The idea here is not to apply fertilizer and then watch it run off, but rather to mix it with the soil.

  14. #54
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    >>If by "solubles" you mean phosphate and ammonia or urea, yes they can be removed.

    Yes, but no. they are dissolved.

    >>Welcome to the future. Liquid manure holding tanks were rare 50 years ago.

    Storage, not treatment!!

    >>pply fertilizer and then watch it run off, but rather to mix it with the soil.

    No. Studdies show that it is important to allow manure to sit in the sun for a few hours to kill bacterias.

    >> not to apply fertilizer and then watch it run off,

    Where are you comming up with these ideas.

    My impression from a fellow friend from Holland, is the regualatory athourities dont let you turn around without getting harrassed. Nothing goes without notice or penalty there.
    You picked the wrong place in the world to prove your point...
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  15. #55
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    >>just so long as they don't do anything 'illegal' according to the USDA, which they largely own?

    Money talks in todays economy.

    Their technology works very well. That is why they are so donminate in sales.
    They arent doing anything illegal.

    Gonvt polocy is changed by the people. We need to lobby our gonvt to start defending our producers. Otherwise in a matter of a few years, all of agriculture will be dominated by agrabusiness.

    Down in Brazi, the govnt stopped Monsanto form collecting thier "rightful" technology fees. It allowed thier farmers to retain somewhat more of their own rights and privaleges. NAd you know what, they still send seed down there, for it is a huge market to sell into, even though they dont collect on the TUA.
    Mean while our gonvt sits here, and allow agrabusines rape their own producers.

    [size="1"][ December 18, 2005, 10:03 AM: Message edited by: Ian ][/size]
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  16. #56
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    >Gonvt polocy is changed by the people.

    but it is largely formed by corporations.

    >We need to lobby our gonvt to start defending our producers. Otherwise in a matter of a few years, all of agriculture will be dominated by agrabusiness.

    Now there I can agree with you wholeheartedly.
    The Barefoot Beekeeper http://www.biobees.com

  17. #57
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    Ian,
    I respect your background and was surprised at the size of the outfit you have. I'd like to see it some time. When you talk I usually listen. I made a few comments earlier and didn't get back to the thread until now. I think there's something in the exchange that is central to the problematic way things are. I know that you have so much invested in your way of thinking that I'm not going to change your mind about anything. That won't stop me.

    I said:
    >>Terramyacin made stronger AFB. Roundup will make stronger weeds.

    You said:
    >>What? RAFB isnt anymore deadly to the bees than the old AFB strain. Affects the hives the same-death. The only difference is that we can control the RAFB with terramyacin.
    Roundup resistant weeds stronger??? No, just tolerant to that chemical treatment.
    Where are you comming frome dickm??? Obviously you dont understant the genii you speak of...

    This is where you irked me.

    >>RAFB isnt anymore deadly to the bees than the old AFB strain.<<<
    I suppose that's true. Dead is dead.

    >>The only difference is that we can control the RAFB with terramyacin<<
    I assume rAFB means "resistant AFB"? I think you meant control it with Tylosin. We certainly aren't going to control it with Terra.

    >>>Paraphrasing now<If Roundup doesn't work we can go to 2-4-D.<<
    2-4-D is Agent Orange. Do you use it? I haven't been paying attention but sort of hoped with the notoriety after Viet Nam that it would have been banned.


    >>Roundup resistant weeds stronger??? No, just tolerant to that chemical treatment.<<
    If one weed can survive the application of a harsh chemical and another could not... wouldn't you agree that the last one standing is stronger?

    The same thing applies to AFB. If one bacterium can survive an antibiotic and another cannot...isn't the surviveing bug "stronger?" It may not be more infective but is more capable of existing in an unfriendly environment. That's what I meant by stronger.

    >>>Where are you comming frome dickm??? Obviously you dont understant the genii you speak of...<<<

    For what it's worth I came off a farm. I think I have a better grasp of these issues than you do simply because I am in the habit of looking at the big picture. In fairness to you, you need to worry about this years harvest. Like other farmers I know, you're sort of a victim.

    The culprit is BIGNESS but let's take the "WE'll just move on to the next thing," attitude. Right now 3/5 of all the antibiotics produced are used in agriculture. Most of this is used "just in case" the animals get sick. In the big picture it's just a matter of time until our most potent medicines are useless, for humans, because the big petri dish that is agriculture, incubated tougher,resistant microbes.

    When Terramyacin came out for our AFB, good people predicted that it would only last a number of years. They are amazed that it lasted as long as it did. Tylosin is not going to be labeled for "Just in case use," as far as I know.
    Raise your eyes to the horizon. How long do you think it will take to raise some AFB bugs resistant tto Tylosin? 5 years? Ten?

    When the Apistan and Checkmite+ came out sensible people knew they weren't going to work forever. We've gone a little backwards in that the acids, which were here all along, are becoming popular. Has it escaped you that "we'll go to something else," doesn't apply? There doesn't seem to be anything else!

    Someone was writing about whaling awhile back and said, "there are some businesses that should go out of business." I hope I'm wrong but I don't see commercial beekeepers learning anything. They still want a fix they can do in seconds. Exclude Bob Harrison and a few others. The factory approach may have to go down the tubes. Again. The stuff they put in their hives would scare a bulldog off a meat wagon.

    Us sideliners that are working with the alternative potions and resistant bees will be ahead of the curve.

    I'm OK now. Don't make me mad again. [img]redface.gif[/img]


    Dickm

    Thinking that I'm leaving this planet to my grandchildren while it's awash with chemicals.

    [size="1"][ December 19, 2005, 07:24 AM: Message edited by: dickm ][/size]

  18. #58
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    >>>Paraphrasing now<If Roundup doesn't work we can go to 2-4-D.<<
    >>2-4-D is Agent Orange. Do you use it? I haven't been paying attention but sort of hoped with the notoriety after Viet Nam that it would have been banned.

    I can't comment on whether 2-4-D is the same compound as Agent Orange; maybe it is, maybe it isn't, I simply don't know and haven't looked it up yet. I do know that 2-4-D is a widely used herbicide, available in almost any hardware store. Harmful? Probably, but so are all the other chemicals we use. I'm not advocating the use of chemicals like 2-4-D, just pointing out that, far from being banned, it's widely available and heavily used in this country.

  19. #59
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    I was half right. It seems the companion compound 2-4-5-T contains Dioxin and that was the major culprit. Do a search and be disgusted by how badly our country can deny things. 2,4-D may be safER but I don't want much of it around my grandchildren.

    From
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agent_Orange


    Description of agent orange:
    Agent Orange is a roughly 1:1 mixture of the two phenoxy herbicides in ester form, 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) and 2,4,5-trichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4,5-T). These herbicides were developed during the 1940s by independant teams in England and the United States for use in controlling broad-leaf plants.

    Dickm

  20. #60
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    Thanks for looking that up! I learned something about Agent Orange I never knew before.

    Personally, I still feel safer around 2,4-D and most any other herbicide than I do around insecticides. Insects and mammals are more closely related than plants and mammals, so we're much more likely to experience some damage from the actions of insecticides (pesticides) including coumphos and fluvalinate. I don't advocate general use of any herbicide or pesticide, though.

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