As to my friend's 'anonymity' - he just has too much to deal with at present. He was waiting for the EPA team to arrive this weekend when I spoke to him, to take samples of dead hives, pollen, bees etc. I did pass on the questions about his treatment of his bees: feeding, varroa treatment etc. He said, "after thirty years as a migratory beekeepr I think I know how to feed bees, treat for varroa and carry out inspections". He said to pass on that he has been 'deeply involved' with some of the bee-research teams over the last six or seven years and his hives have been sampled for pollen residues 'numerous times'.[/QUOTE]
Please let us all know the results of sample analysis. Without any such corroboration of the neonics hypothesis, this sad tale is not going to persuade many people of a clear cause.
Just wondering whether all samples went to one lab only. It's sometimes safer,but obviously more expensive, to involve more than one.
A problem with any results could,of course, be that neonics are already known to work at single figure ppb. and that the delayed effects on colony health,through many factors of debilitation, might result in failing colonies with little residue to be detected.
Nevertheless, I would guess that, in such a dramatic case as this, there should be a detectable level of poison;if only in the comb.
If no such presence were to be shown, this would remain just an unexplained tragedy.
P.S. I'm glad you posted this information ,and I agree that Bayer et al. have been characteristically duplicitious in their selective marketing ploys.
Compare their description of 'Premise+Nature', (Imidacloprid),and its claimed immunity-destoying effects on Termites and their denial of such effects on bees.Followed by their revelation ,under scutiny, that they never tested for any such effects in bees or other pollinators. How poor is that?