Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 34
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    lewisberry, Pa, usa
    Posts
    6,081

    Wink Lets pretend we know its pesticides/neonicotinoids...

    In conversations with a couple people about CCD, the following items have come up. It could be factual, could be hysteria, could be rumors, could be personal agendas playing into this. Just would like to see what other think, what they know, and hopefully we can learn something...

    1)Bayer controls/owns the research labs we look for in getting answers. That the kind of facilities to do testing is very limited.

    2) The EPA let very loose quality guidelines pass in approval of neonicotinoids. These were suppose to be the next generation of pesticides replacing the "harder" chemicals that were previously used. But apparently real data and testing failed to make the grade.

    3) That at the moment, support for re-evaluating neonicotinoids are being looked at from very high levels(Don't ask). But everyone is scared crapless about playing hardball with the chemical companies.

    4)That findings/discussions/research in neonicotinoids is further than what most realize but its a matter of lining up the ducks, not sticking necks out too far, and making DANG SURE, before anyone makes concrete statements.

    5)That apparently the whole neonicotinoid "story" is going to be far worse than anyone expected. With major implications and information that would "blow your mind".

    So, what do you know? Comments?
    Last edited by BjornBee; 04-09-2007 at 02:26 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Troupsburg, NY
    Posts
    4,082

    Default

    I know nothing, I see nothing, I hear nothing .

    Darn......there go those black suv's again.......
    "I reject your reality, and substitute my own." Adam Savage

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Hanson, MA & Lebanon, ME
    Posts
    696

    Default

    The black helicopters have been circling for years - maybe they're finally going to land.

    In all seriousness, #5 it won't surprise me at all. Humans think they're sooooo smart. And are so greedy.
    - Ann, a Gardening Beek

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Whitefield, Maine USA
    Posts
    6,625

    Default

    I've got nothing to add Bjorn, being privy to no inside information on this matter, but I'm a sucker for conspiracy theories in general and this is a good one. Furthermore, my basic beliefs are that government agencies in general and the EPA in particular are primarily motivated by political deep pocket considerations and not by any true concerns for the public's long-term safety, health, and welfare. In other words, I not only believe the rumors you've posted, but I could have predicted such a situation because I just don't trust the EPA or the cronies they do business with.
    Dulcius ex asperis

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    5,479

    Default

    >>I not only believe the rumors you've posted, but I could have predicted such a situation because I just don't trust the EPA or the cronies they do business with.


    Now boys, no use sending this site into a paranoid state
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Troupsburg, NY
    Posts
    4,082

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian View Post
    >>I not only believe the rumors you've posted, but I could have predicted such a situation because I just don't trust the EPA or the cronies they do business with.


    Now boys, no use sending this site into a paranoid state
    Paranoid....Paranoid.....us'en Paranoid?????......naw

    Bjorn it wouldn't surprize me abit if the rumors were true....glad I don't use any of that stuff..... .
    "I reject your reality, and substitute my own." Adam Savage

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Sparta, Tennessee
    Posts
    2,122

    Default

    What are the primary crops these neonicotinoids are used on? I sure would like to ask some of the local farmers if they are using the pesticides or not...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Mineral, Nr Richmond VA
    Posts
    177

    Default

    It's unlikely you would ever know. Most damning reports these days are changed so much by political paper pushers that the end published report looks nothing like the original.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    lewisberry, Pa, usa
    Posts
    6,081

    Default

    Jeff,
    there are many including apples, peaches, vinecrops such as pumpkins, etc. By pesticide consultant estimates I have talked too, as much as 80 to 90% of corn now planted is seed pretreated with one form or another of a neonicotinoid based pesticide.

    I listed not long ago the label names for most of the neonicotinoids. Not sure which thread it was. Do a seach for "assail" or "Gauncho". I am sure it will pop up. It was entitled something like "neonicotinoid letter". It was in the thread detailing a letter I sent to my growers. When I am done typing this I'll look for it.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    lewisberry, Pa, usa
    Posts
    6,081

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,349

    Default

    Good Post Bjorn, we need to think in the abstract as we look ahead!
    I think it is unlikely these pesticides are THE culprit. However this post raises the realization that with the problems we experianced with CCD we need to start looking past the next pollination job and honey crop and get a bigger picture of the world our bees, under growing assult, must survive in. These items as well as the huge amoung of genetically grown corn now being planted and other factors heretofore ignored, may be the next domino to tip in the survival of our industry.

    The question in my mind will be are we tilting at windmills?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Darlingford, Manitoba
    Posts
    17

    Default

    Bjornbee,

    Your interest in specific areas of possible interest relating to loss of bee populations touches upon some of the problems of why the average joe beekeeper is effectively left in the dark.

    Being left in the dark results in rumours, theories, conversations without much hope of clarification of the problem etc. etc.

    This type of situation often then pits beekeeper against beekeeper, beekeeper against academic, beekeeper against researcher.

    The average beekeeper is held outside circles of those with knowledge - the latter being a powerful tool.

    Real information passes between select individuals, associations, companies, government departments - beekeepers at the ordinary level are not party to this information.

    Individuals in the know will not pass up information on web discussion groups.

    They will not do this because they will be hammered by their subject peers, controlling departments.
    They would be liable for funding difficulties in the future.
    They could be open to many levels of legal action.
    They might not have definite proof.
    They would have a plethera of questions ranging from the logical and sensible to the outright silly - all in public.

    So, all this means that intelligent questions are asked via. forums such as this - but nothing will come of it apart from interested people going around and around.

    Discussions on topic such as CCD are interesting - but it must be realised that forums such as this one will not result in information privy to those in the know being released.

    In trying to influence the use of phytosanitary products, efforts are wrapped in a web of lobby pressure, interest group action, directed research, legal obligations that allow questions not to be posed and answered that need not be produced.

    Often the object of concern is a moving target, one that is usually so intermingled with other domains that a concise answer is practically impossible to obtain.

    If CCD is due to Beekeepers being caught out by varroa, a new virus, immune deficiency or any other metabolic problem due to natural design - We will be told someday (funds allowing).
    If it is due to a problem directly or indirectly caused by artificial circumstances - then it will be brought into the light only by the process of drag and squeal.

    That will take organisation by the beekeepers - at a level that I do not see as being present today on this continent of the Americas.

    Pembinabee

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Volga, SD
    Posts
    2,791

    Default

    Let's throw a little reality back into this one, before the hysteria gets too far out of hand.

    1)Bayer controls/owns the research labs we look for in getting answers. That the kind of facilities to do testing is very limited. -BjornBee
    Owns? No. Controls? No. Most of these labs/facilities are governmental, or parts of universities. The "control" that is being discussed is because Bayer contributes to research. For example, a researcher studying corn is likely to receive seed and/or pesticides free of charge from Bayer to be used in the research. At least some beekeepers see this as a "conflict of interest," and allege that the researchers may be likely to bias or withhold their results strictly because Bayer donated some materials to the research.

    2) The EPA let very loose quality guidelines pass in approval of neonicotinoids. These were suppose to be the next generation of pesticides replacing the "harder" chemicals that were previously used. But apparently real data and testing failed to make the grade. -BjornBee
    While the guidelines that were followed to approve neonicotinoids (each individually, by the way) may be of "loose quality," some beekeepers on this forum keeping insisting that those same guidelines are too strict when it comes to approving oxalic acid for use against Varroa mites. Which is it: too loose, or too strict?

    3) That at the moment, support for re-evaluating neonicotinoids are being looked at from very high levels(Don't ask). But everyone is scared crapless about playing hardball with the chemical companies. -BjornBee
    I don't even know how to interpret this one. "Re-evaluating?" By the EPA? On what grounds? "Scared" of "playing hardball" with the chemical companies? Other chemicals have been removed from the market by the EPA -- they weren't "scared" in those instances.

    4)That findings/discussions/research in neonicotinoids is further than what most realize but its a matter of lining up the ducks, not sticking necks out too far, and making DANG SURE, before anyone makes concrete statements. -BjornBee
    I don't know about the exact nature of research into neonicotinoids, so I can't really comment about "how far" the work has gone at this point.

    So, what do you know? Comments? -BjornBee
    Sure, a few thoughts connected to neonicotinoids.

    While neonicotinoids may pose some threats, why the sudden outcry now? Why not fifteen years ago, when these chemicals were already in wide-spread use? The use of neonicotinoids in 2006 was little different than the use in 2000. Why would problems only show up in 2006 if such low concentrations (as French beekeepers allege) affect honey bees so significantly?

    And, are neonicotinoids really effective at such low concentrations as some folks are claiming now? Five parts per billion? The only other chemical that I know of being toxic at such low concentrations is dioxin (teratogenic at 3 ppb). Why not investigate the potential for dioxin poisonings of bees affected by CCD?

    Last comment for now along these lines: France has largely banned the use of neonicotinoids. In response, growers in France have returned to using greater amounts of nerve toxins on their crops to control insect pests. Which is worse for honey bees? Small amounts of neonicotinoids, or large amounts of nerve toxins? Which is better? Do we have any idea?

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Whitefield, Maine USA
    Posts
    6,625

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Kieck View Post
    Let's throw a little reality back into this one, before the hysteria gets too far out of hand.
    Oh, must we? What's wrong with a little hysteria?

    While the guidelines that were followed to approve neonicotinoids (each individually, by the way) may be of "loose quality," some beekeepers on this forum keeping insisting that those same guidelines are too strict when it comes to approving oxalic acid for use against Varroa mites. Which is it: too loose, or too strict?
    Isn't it plausible that one approval might be under-scrutinized and another over-scrutinized, or that political and/or economic ah.. considerations.. might be involved in one approval process and not so much in another?

    While neonicotinoids may pose some threats, why the sudden outcry now? Why not fifteen years ago, when these chemicals were already in wide-spread use?
    There is a statute of limitations at work here? A Grandfather Clause? We lose our right to voice our concerns over matters of the Public Health and Welfare if we don't speak up soon enough? What if new evidence comes to light? Too late? I don't think so. Two months ago I'd never heard of neonicotinoids. 15 minutes ago I couldn't spell it. I still can't say it right.

    There's no statute of limitations on murder and as far as I'm concerned there's no statute of limitations on "crimes" where the "victim" is the public health and welfare, should that be found to be at-risk. I don't see why you need to throw the "why now?" at us. In fact, I don't see how you can throw that at us.

    And, are neonicotinoids really effective at such low concentrations as some folks are claiming now? Five parts per billion? The only other chemical that I know of being toxic at such low concentrations is dioxin (teratogenic at 3 ppb). Why not investigate the potential for dioxin poisonings of bees affected by CCD?
    Well, the exception proves the rule, eh? If one chemical is toxic at such low concentrations, then it's plausible another might be? I of course no nothing about neonicotinoids. Folks didn't know much about DDT either back when they used to dust people with it for lice. Also, I know it's not really relevant, but have they finally decided what is a safe dosage of ionizing radiation?

    Last comment for now along these lines: France has largely banned the use of neonicotinoids. In response, growers in France have returned to using greater amounts of nerve toxins on their crops to control insect pests. Which is worse for honey bees? Small amounts of neonicotinoids, or large amounts of nerve toxins? Which is better? Do we have any idea?
    Something wrong with this argument Kieck, or maybe it's just that I've never subscribed to the concept of the lesser of two evils being somehow "OK". It's like voting for The Idiot for president because he's better than The Moron he's running against. Know what I mean?
    Dulcius ex asperis

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Arundel, Maine USA
    Posts
    1,207

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Joel View Post
    I think it is unlikely these pesticides are THE culprit.
    Just curious Joel, could you explain a little more about your point of view? To me, it seems very likely that CCD could be caused by pesticides. Just look at the word PEST-icide aka INSECT-iside (type of pesticide)

    http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/envirom/pesthwwrk.htm

    We know from research that pesticides cause nervous system damage in humans (specifically young children) why wouldn't bees somehow be affected by it? See link below:

    http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/health/human.htm

    Some might say "these pesticides have been in use for X amount of years." But with the exponential increase in sales of such crops as soy, the use of these pesticides has become more common.

    http://www.soyfoods.org/products/sales-and-trends/

    Pesticides accumulate in the soil, drinking water, animals we eat, and the plants we grow. Perhaps levels of the stuff are becoming so concentrated that we are finally seeing the environments response to the exposure to these chemicals. Maybe it's a cumulative combination of the different types of neonicotinoids. I know that some pesticides are used simply to enhance the action of another pesticide. Perhaps some strange mixture has occured, and we are seeing the direct result of that.

    Don't misunderstand me. I'm not saying that CCD is DEFINITELY caused by neonicotinoids. But It seems like a plausable theory. And don't be mistaken. It's not a "conspiracy theory" to understand the concept that a multi-trillion dollar chemical company is going to do what it can to protect it's financial viability. Bayer and any other company that might produce or distribute these pesticides, has A LOOOOOOOOOOTTTTTT to lose.

    Just my thoughts. I have never worked in a lab with pesticides. I don't have a degree. I went to medical school for 3 years but didn't graduate cuz I ran out of money. But I am intelligent, and pesticides are something I have done a great deal of research on. I have tried my best to be "objective" in my research. It's difficult, being human, to do such a thing. But frankly, what I've read is frightening. I'm not interested in starting a huge argument with any one, or in taking over this thread. But I would like other people's point of view, just like bjornbee...

    thanks!

    -K-

    PS- Thanks George, I read your post after I wrote mine. I'm glad you brought those points to light. Kieck, I think it would be good for you to tell everyone your qualifications on the issue. I got into an argument with him not knowing he worked in a lab that studied pesticides. It's ok though, I think I held my own..
    Last edited by hummingberd; 04-10-2007 at 05:33 PM.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,349

    Default

    Hi Humingbird !

    Don't get me wrong, I think pesticides are A culprit in CCD just not THE culprit. I think CCD is a virutal galaxy of problems which have come together due to the current method of beekeeping including pesticides, in and out of the hives, Inferior queens from overbreeding, large numbers of stressed bees confined in small geographical areas, Varroa, trachael, PMS, DWV, nosema, a difficult weather pattern....the list goes on. It may not be the same in every operation. It may be a pattern of collapse defined by hive reaching a threshold of collapse. In 1997 Dr. Shiminoko, then at Beltsville, taught a class which I attended. He got me thinking of a colony of bees not as a hive of individuals but as a group which constituted and organism. If enough factors contribute to weakin the immune system of the organism it succumbs to the many pathogens which occur normally in virutally any hive. Petsicides are merely one of those factors.

    I think CCD is not some new sudden impact acute disease, Jame Tew, Ohio State, described it to a T 5 yrs ago in his writings. I think like everything in nature CCD will be cyclical and the impact will be directly related to the stress of a population in any give area, supported by poor beekeeping practices and exposure to things such as poor weather and pesticides.

    I'm quite certain in many cases pesticides play a role but at this point I don't think we are dealing with any one CCD vector.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    3,401

    Thumbs down

    > The use of neonicotinoids in 2006 was little different than the use
    > in 2000. Why would problems only show up in 2006 if such low
    > concentrations (as French beekeepers allege) affect honey bees
    > so significantly?

    [SIZE=7]Ding Ding Ding![/SIZE]

    No more calls please, we have a winner.
    Kieck wins the clear thinking award for today.

    > I think pesticides are A culprit in CCD just not THE culprit...
    > I think CCD is not some new sudden impact acute disease,
    > James Tew, Ohio State, described it to a T 5 yrs ago in his writings

    Yes, and it was also described "to a T" in 1976, and in the 1960s,
    when very different pesticides from today were used, thereby
    eliminating pesticides from the list of "suspects".

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,349

    Default

    {in the 1960s, when very different pesticides from today}

    Yes I remeber the days when DDT was sprayed over the nation like plant food, we drank cyclamates with big smiles on our faces and hosed the nam with agent orange. And lets not foget paraquat or malathion!

    Those were the good old days!

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Volga, SD
    Posts
    2,791

    Default

    Isn't it plausible that one approval might be under-scrutinized and another over-scrutinized, or that political and/or economic ah.. considerations.. might be involved in one approval process and not so much in another? -George Fergusson
    Plausible, perhaps. Likely, no. At least not among the employees of the EPA that I've dealt with who work on such approvals. They receive the same salaries whether specific chemicals are approved or denied. And the "fear" that they might approve something that's later proven to be so damaging tends to keep them on the straight and narrow.

    There is a statute of limitations at work here? A Grandfather Clause? We lose our right to voice our concerns over matters of the Public Health and Welfare if we don't speak up soon enough? What if new evidence comes to light? Too late? I don't think so. -George Fergusson
    No, there is no "statute of limitations." But please reread my questions -- not that we could suddenly discover that neonicotinoids may have effects that we hadn't previously imagined, but that these effects haven't manifested themselves until now. Why? Look up the useage of the common neonicotinoids over the last few years. Sure, they were introduced 15 years ago and the use has increased (obviously) since then, but the use over the last seven to eight years hasn't changed much. So, why wouldn't we have seen effects in 2000? Or in 2001? Or in 2002. . . ? Why would those effects suddenly appear only in 2006? What else changed?

    Something wrong with this argument Kieck, or maybe it's just that I've never subscribed to the concept of the lesser of two evils being somehow "OK". -George Fergusson
    I wasn't trying to make an argument for or against one or the other, George. I apologize if it seemed that way. What I was trying to point out was that eliminating the use of neonicotinoids does not mean that crops will be free of pesticides that can/will harm bees.

    Now, honey bees in France won't be poisoned by neonicotinoids. But they're more likely than bees in other countries to be poisoned by nerve toxins. Your bees are no less dead if they die from nerve toxin poisoning than from neonicotinoid poisoning.

    Perhaps levels of the stuff are becoming so concentrated that we are finally seeing the environments response to the exposure to these chemicals. Maybe it's a cumulative combination of the different types of neonicotinoids. -hummingberd
    Actually, the allegations against neonicotinoids state that the neonicotinoids affect bees at very, very low concentrations (perhaps 5 ppb). Not accumulations over time, but amounts that can be found immediately after applying the pesticides, and amounts that remain for weeks up to a few months after applications. And neonicotinoids do tend to break down fairly quickly in the environment.

    So, either such low concentrations of neonicotinoids are not going to affect honey bees (and, therefore, the neonicotinoids should be easily detected in any affected hive), or the "problem" (CCD, in this case) should have shown up several years ago and been an annual event for as long as neonicotinoids have been in widespread use. Neither seems to be the case.

    Pesticides accumulate in the soil, drinking water, animals we eat, and the plants we grow. -hummingberd
    A very real risk, and a good reason to follow labels and laws when applying pesticides. In my opinion, pesticides (both herbicides and insecticides) are over-used.

    However, commercial and agricultural applicators tend to follow labels much more closely than your average homeowner or renter. Drive through your local town or city. Look at the lawns. How many weeds do you see? How much herbicide has been applied to those lawns to make them look that way? How many people use roach or ant or wasp sprays? How many think, "If a little kills them, I'll use some extra just to make sure," and use far more active ingredient than necessary?

    Just as an example, one class of chemical that's likely to be taken off most markets in the near future is pyrethroids. These are chemicals that are similar in chemical structure and mode of action to a chemical found naturally in some plants that kills insects. Pyrethroids have low toxicity to mammals, but tend to be very toxic to insects and fish and some other organisms.

    Pyrethroids, for a while, seemed to be a sort of "miracle" pesticide. Effective in low amounts, relatively inexpensive, quick to break down in the environment, low toxicity to humans, but the pyrethroids are showing up in surface and ground waters now. The reason? Overapplication, not following the label. And not by the growers and commercial applicators, but by homeowners in towns and cities.

    Kieck, I think it would be good for you to tell everyone your qualifications on the issue. I got into an argument with him not knowing he worked in a lab that studied pesticides. -hummingber
    I thought my arguments hold their own logically. I didn't think I needed to give "credentials" to back up what I've pointed out. But I do need to clarify one issue -- I have done a fair amount of work with some pesticides, but I really study insects. Right now, most of the research I'm working on examines the effects of insects on transgenic (that's right -- "GM") crops and the effects of transgenic crops on insects. I have worked on establishing economic thresholds for insect pests in several crops, and have helped conduct research to label some pesticides for use in crops where they previously were not labeled. In doing some of this work, I have handled and applied most classes of pesticides on the market and some that are not.

    Just to give some more specific information, some of the test plots where different insecticides are compared are less than one mile from one of my bee yards. I have helped apply pesticides to those plots for the last two years, usually spraying some of bees in the process. Those bees have been sprayed with almost every form of neonicotinoid on the market, most forms of pyrethroids available, organophosphates, carbamates, and so on. While I have witnessed some pesticide poisoning among those bees from time to time, I have not lost any other those hives to pesticide poisoning or to CCD. Nothing statistical about those observations, but they do pretty well eliminate the simple "cause-and-effect" idea about neonicotinoids and CCD. Not only were those bees exposed to low doses of neonicotinoids, they were exposed to high doses (foliar applications, made while the bees were working), and for two consecutive years.

    And lets not foget paraquat or malathion! -Joel
    Forget them? They're still commonly used! Malathion is one of the most widely used insecticides, and paraquat is one of the most widely used herbicides. Paraquat is currently under review in the E.U., but seems to be used more heavily in Europe than in the U.S.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Arundel, Maine USA
    Posts
    1,207

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Kieck View Post

    I thought my arguments hold their own logically. I didn't think I needed to give "credentials" to back up what I've pointed out. .
    I totally agree with you Kieck, but I also believe that if the issue wasn't important to you, you wouldn't be expressing your views and knowlege. I could be wrong. Just an assumption. I think people are more willing to "pay attention" when they know the person speaking is educated on the issue and has first hand experience. We all are entitled to our opinion on issues, even if we are blatantly ignorant. Just thought it would be interesting for people to know where you come from. It certainly gave me a whole new respect for you and your posts when I realized that your work involved research on the subject of pesticides... Thanks for educating us!

    Joel, thanks for you clarification. I'm still trying to figure out exactly where I stand on this issue. I'm leaning toward pesticides, but am open right now to the things I'm reading and hearing about. Especially from other beekeepers who are knowlegeable. As always, I respect your POV.

    -K-


Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads