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  1. #1
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    Sep 2011
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    Default Corn and Soy dust

    I watched a video on a course Mel Disselkoen taught on queen rearing. In that video he takes a significant moment to address his theory on soy and or corn dust being a cause of CCD.

    I am interested in finding out what others think on this theory.
    In a nut shell Mel seems fairly well convinced that this dust is fatal to bees and has observed an increased loss of hives in relation to them being located near corn or soy fields during harvest. He compares this hazard to his initial practice of dusting larva with flower in order to selectively kill them as his earlier queen breeding program taught. in a similar manner he suspects the dust is lethal to adult bees. Those that survive the fields return with this dust which in turn may be lethal to larva in the hive. He makes some mention that soy dust is outright toxic and this is fairly well known.

    Okay that is the nut shell of his theory as I understood it. Mainly I am interested in a more rounded collection of thoughts on this.

  2. #2
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    May 2009
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    Garland, Bladen County, NC, USA
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    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    We have hives out around corn and soybean fields. Never noticed any special death rate following harvest. Wondering if he is referring to the dust stirred up by the harvester? Sounds like kind of a weak theory.
    “Don’t tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you have travelled.” - The Quran

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    Herb, To be fair I think you would have to have Mel's presentation on it. I just glossed over it and doubt I even have it completely. He has some tracking he has done and some comparisons of yards near corn and soy and those that where not.
    He did show photos of the dust he is speaking of and it is the dust from the harvesters. He also showed photos of the plants around the field and the dust that settles on them.

    I actually posted this because I also consider it a long shot. Simply put bees are subjected to dust of all sorts. Mel does make a bit of a case that corn and soy have reasons to be suspect over other forms of dust. At the moment I sort of have that feeling that I only have one side of the story. I have not seen this mentioned in this group or anywhere else before. So sort of beating the bushes to see what i can scare out about it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    KC, MO, USA
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    1,238

    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    Soy flour is in most pollen patties, not in dust form but could become dust if they dry out.

    I have heard of some feeding their bees just soy flour.

    A dried soy or corn field is not likely to be a place the bee will be foraging, maybe along the fence rows.
    During that time of year it could be too cold for them to be out of the hive (depending on the year)

    For the most part the kernels and beans are not broken, they are harvested whole. Most dust comes from the dirt and the leafy stocks of the plants. (GMO leafy dust maybe)

    Not saying either way just that these will need to be considered in this theory.

    A few things to look at would be:
    If it is a four producing factory that is causing this you should be able to find cases of CCD all around most of these factories, and more so downwind of them. And almost none where there is no grain industry or farming.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    roswell, georgia, USA
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    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    Just might relate to the thread on the bee forum:

    http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...ling-honeybees
    EAS Georgia Certified. "Tradition - Even if you have done it the same way for years doesn't mean that it is not stupid."

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    Keep in mind that if bees collect this dust and bring it back to the hive, it isn't dust anymore. Unless the corn and soy dust is actually poisonous I don't see this as a source of the cause of CCD or even a contributor to CCD, except perhaps in the quality of the protein provided by corn or soy.

    It could be possible though that neonicitinoid pesticide treated corn or soy beans will contribute to colony collapse were dust from corn or soy beans collected by bees and fed.

    I can't sight the source, otheras know how to do that, but, studies of CCD cause have included analysis of pollen in the CCD hives. Dennis van Engelsdorp from Penn State, Jeff Petis, and Jerry Hayes from FL contributed to these studies. Maybe tracking their work would be an avenue to the studies.
    Mark Berninghausen
    Squeak Creek Apiaries



  7. #7
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    Sep 2011
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    Reno, NV
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    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    The insecticide issue is far more known and I would think a more legitimate suspect. I will look into some of the studies mentioned. So far this is looking like it is a shot in the dark that is leading to a dead end.

  8. #8
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    Apr 2008
    Location
    Leominster, MA USA
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    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    [QUOTE=sqkcrk;742211]

    >It could be possible though that neonicitinoid pesticide treated corn or soy beans will contribute to colony collapse were dust from corn or soy beans collected by bees and fed.



    Here is a link to the Perdue study which talks about the pesticides in the dust:

    http://www.plosone.org/article/info%...l.pone.0029268


    This is the same study cited above in hoodswood's link to Beesource thread:

    http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...ling-honeybees

    Ramona
    Last edited by Ramona; 01-06-2012 at 05:05 PM. Reason: format

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Winston Salem , NC
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    228

    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    So humans too! I guess all that soy dust while combining beans is slowly hurting me too.
    larry

  10. #10
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    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    You don't wear a mask or have an enclosed cab tractor or combine?
    Mark Berninghausen
    Squeak Creek Apiaries



  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Knox Co, Ohio, USA
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    877

    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    Here is a link to the Perdue study which talks about the pesticides in the dust:

    http://www.plosone.org/article/info%...l.pone.0029268


    This is the same study cited above in hoodswood's link to Beesource thread:

    http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...ling-honeybees
    This study mentioned planter dust which is not the dust created when a field is harvested.

    Tom

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Bowling Green, Kentucky
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    419

    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    neonics are a systemic insecticide they would be in the plant that is blown out of a combine. I have never observed bees working this dust but have observed bees working sawdust at times and have seen them work dust out of a grain bin so it is not out of the question that they might work that dust.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Cresco Iowa
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    84

    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    I am not sure if corn dust is lethal or not but what I will tell you is that I have a beeyard on my in-laws property that is located about 100 yards away from their corn dryer and it was by far the largest hive I had this year. (They run about 150,000 bushels through it per/year so there is a LOT of dust!) Obviously, my experience is very limited since there is only one hive and not 50. I ran a dozen hives last year, all on farm land but only one near the dryer, so I guess to really do a study, I'll have to see how it does next year but it really didn't seem to affect it at all.

  14. #14
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    Apr 2011
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    ElDorado,Arkansas,USA
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    Default Re: Corn and Soy dust

    I kind of have doubts on corn and soy dust being the culprit as corn and soy dust has been around much longer than CCD has.

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