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  1. #1
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    Default Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Steve Ellis serves as Secretary of the National HoneyBee Advisory Board and is a large scale bee-farmer
    He placed 1,312 of his hives Minnesota in his normal bee-yard territory. A nearby farm planted corn a few days later and the dust - presumably clothianidin (used on 90%+ of American corn as seed treatment) blew around and contaminated willows and other plants the bees were foraging on. The kill started on May 7th and Steve is still waiting results of tests. He is certain it was the neonics in the corn planted dust.

    I asked him how many of the 1,312 hives were affected and he said 'all of them'.

    Doesn't yet know ho many of the contaminated hives will collapse completely but he says it is already a 'massive depopulation' event. He wrote:

    "1,312 hives were on that location, all were affected. Impossible to estimate % of population of each hive killed as yet. Suffice to say it was a severe depopulation event."

    From: Steve Ellis
    Date: 15 May 2013 22:57:29 GMT+01:00


    Dear All,

    Below is a video link to a short You Tube piece which my newly hired bee keeper in training-photographer spliced together, showing the bee injury associated with corn planting of neo nics.

    http://youtu.be/xxXXaILuK5s

    The Minnesota Dept of Agriculture, Bayer, Bee Informed Partnership, and Penn State are all currently working on getting samples analyzed for chemical residues.

    Picture is worth a thousand words. James did a nice job of filming and editing. Voice is mine.

    Steve Ellis

    National Honey bee Advisory Board website is here:

    http://www.nhbab.com/members.html


    NHBAB Board Members for 2012

    Bret Adee, Co-Chair Dave Hackenberg

    Bruce, SD Lewisberg, PA


    Steve Ellis, Secretary Jim Frazier, Scientific Advisor

    Barrett, MN Penn State University PA

    AHPA MEMBERS ABF MEMBERS


    Jeff Anderson Jim Doan

    Eagle Bend, MN Hamlin, NY


    Rick Smith David Mendes

    Yuma, AZ N. Fort Mylers, FL


    Randy Verhoek Tim Tucker

    Bismarck ND Niotaze, KS

    You can email any member of the NHBAB via a form on that web page.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
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    Camarillo, CA, USA
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    311

    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Just posting to keep this up, hope we get follow up info on results of testing

  3. #3

    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    That is just sad. Hopefully your work along with others will finally help resolve this neonics issue.
    Started beekeeping in 2013 and having a blast with my 9 small cell hives!!

  4. #4
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    Apr 2013
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    Eugene, Oregon USA
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Even if test results aren't "conclusive," I would really hope that the US will follow the EU and place a temporary ban on these substances until more research can be done. Given Steve's credentials and the video documentation of the incident, this is a game-changer IMHO......

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by BigDawg View Post
    Given Steve's credentials and the video documentation of the incident, this is a game-changer IMHO......
    Steve made a big deal about an alledged planter dust kill 12 months ago: http://www.nbcnews.com/video/nightly...79683#47379683 There was a follow up investigation back then, so why havn't we been told about the results? Is it because neonics were not detected in the dying bees?

    And if Steve sincerely believes planter dust killed his bees last year, why did he put them in harms way again this year? Why didn't he talk to his corn farmer neighbors to find out when they would be planting this year so he could move his bees away from the fields? Why didn't Steve shoot video and even a photo of his neighbors planting this past season to document alot of dust was being kicked up? Normally there is not much dust kicked up unless the soil is dry and the wind is blowing rather strongly. Why is Steve the only beekeeper in that region of Minnesota alledging planter dust kills?

  6. #6
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    Apr 2013
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    Eugene, Oregon USA
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    http://www.purdue.edu/newsroom/resea...rupkeBees.html

    "Analyses of bees found dead in and around hives from several apiaries over two years in Indiana showed the presence of neonicotinoid insecticides, which are commonly used to coat corn and soybean seeds before planting. The research showed that those insecticides were present at high concentrations in waste talc that is exhausted from farm machinery during planting.

    The insecticides clothianidin and thiamethoxam were also consistently found at low levels in soil - up to two years after treated seed was planted - on nearby dandelion flowers and in corn pollen gathered by the bees, according to the findings released in the journal PLoS One this month.

    "We know that these insecticides are highly toxic to bees; we found them in each sample of dead and dying bees," said Christian Krupke, associate professor of entomology and a co-author of the findings."

  7. #7
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    Apr 2013
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    Eugene, Oregon USA
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    http://www.extension.org/pages/65034...ney-bee-health

    "In the spring of 2010 we became aware of it when we saw dead bees in front of most of the Purdue bee hives during the week that corn was being planted nearby. Conditions were hot (85°F), dry and windy and clouds of dust were kicked up by the planters – a common sight throughout the Midwest in early spring. We tested bees that were dying in front of hives near agricultural fields and also healthy hives. The dead bees had clothianidin and several other seed treatment chemicals in or on their bodies. Most of the bees that were dying were actually the nurse bees that may have consumed pollen that was being collected from dandelions and other flowering plants in the area. We saw the characteristic color of dandelion pollen on most of the foragers. Pollen collected by returning foragers and pollen sampled from the cells of those hives had about 10 times the level of clothianidin and thiamethoxam as compared to that detected in the dead bees."

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Purdue did not test Steve Ellis's bees. But someone did and so Steve already knows the results. Why is Steve not openly and eagerly sharing those results?

  9. #9
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    Apr 2013
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    Eugene, Oregon USA
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    You've stated in several threads now that neonicotinoids applied to seed can't be killing bees because the concentration isn't high enough. Above are two studies that clearly demonstrate your assertion is wrong.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Such pictures make me real sick, because it is so unnecessary. It has been long known but still pictures like these coming in from all over the World.

    It has been known since 1999, so for 14 years now, that the dust of neonic seed treated corn contaminates the nearby environment. In 1999 first poisonings were observed nearby corn fields in Italy.

    The university of Udine, Italy, published their first study in 2003, studying the topic from year 2000 on. Manufacturer involved. Title: Risk of environmental contamination by the active ingredient imidacloprid used for corn seed dressing.

    I cite:
    “corn sowing must be considered a potentially dangerous operation in terms of general environmental pollution. It is possible that the spread of the active ingredient in the environment during sowing operations could cause serious damage in bee colonies”

    Next publication in 2006: Presence of imidacloprid on vegetation near corn fields sown with Gaucho® dressed seeds
    Citation: “The investigation showed that Gaucho dressed corn seeds during sowing operations can release imidacloprid into the environment, and therefore bees and wild pollinator insects could be exposed to the insecticide molecule. Plants could accumulate the active ingredient released during different sowing operations in the same area and become polluted for a time depending on the length of the sowing period. The same problem could be extended to other pesticides, at present or in the future, used in seed dressing”.

    We all know the symptoms very well.









    All the combs are toxic waste. You need to throw away all the pollen/bee bread combs or the colonies will continue to shrink. Feed clean pollen patties. At a certain stage of poisoning you need to throw away all the combs and do shake downs.


    Especially watch the corn flowering. Bees collect the pollen and you get a second hit. Bees don't recover well from this and die until or during winter in great numbers.





    Guttation water is a problem, too. Bees go for the dew drops in the morning and get poisoned. See: http://www.mieliditalia.it/download/moriaapi.wmv
    Try to provide a fresh and attractive water source.

    Best is to move the bees off this site and generally avoid any corn or other neonic treated farmland if possible.

  11. #11
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    Nov 2009
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    There is abundant evidence that planter dust during seed drilling can be a problem for bees.
    The issue here is control and following best practice as it is only a problem under certain conditions with certain types of planter.

    There is little or no evidence that guttation droplets are a problem.
    Girolami fed guttation droplets with high levels of neonicotinoid to bees in the lab and not surprisingly they died - but it is not even certain that guttation water is used by bees in the field other than on rare occasions.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Planter dust is a once a year potential bee exposure problem during dry and windy conditions
    and is largely mitigable: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z4VKaaq70Yc Smart beekeepers will follow that mitigation advice. Of course, if one is a lawsuit settlement money seeking beekeeper then they won't follow that planter dust avoidance advice.

    Bees do not normally collect pollen from field corn so there is no significant neonic exposure there. And bees do not normally drink guttation water droplets so there is no significant exposure there either. Therefore banning neonic seed treatments will not help the health of midwestern bees in any significant way. Banning could potentially have a net detrimental effect if farmers are forced to clear more land where wildflowers currently grow in order to expand crop acreages to make up for the yield loss caused by the banning of neonics.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Glad to see someone point out the obvious also.....

    No one in the world says neonic are not pesticides, Don't make things up. And yes planter dust can be a issue.. but any RESPOSIBLE bee owner knows this. Looking at steves video, I was alarmed that ANYONE let alone a "professional" would put a full yard like that next to unplanted ground without knowing what is going on.
    This looked to me to be another example on a large scale of Piss poor beekeeping.

    If I dump sevin dust in my hives bees will die...
    Any pollinator here spends their lives looking out for the spraying of pesticides.... in apples. melons. nuts and obviously corn planting also.
    WE as beekeepers can not REASONABLY expect the world to stop everything that harms our bees. what we need to do is be judicious. I would no more put my bees in unplanted corn, than let my dog drink antifreeze, or my kids into the poisens under the sink.....

    Neonic seed coatings eliminate the need for at least 2 chemical sprayings for insects... I will take that trade EVERY day of the year.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Neonic seed coatings eliminate the need for at least 2 chemical sprayings for insects... I will take that trade EVERY day of the year.

  15. #15
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    Alexandria Mn USA
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    It's not only Steve with problems.
    http://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2013/0...g-bee-die-off/


    Randy

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    When I re-start next year, I wouldn't dream of placing any colonies adjacent to corn field - or any single-crop field, let alone completely surrounded by them on all sides; I just really don't understand why a beekeeper would purposefully do that. Even if the specific pesticides a farmer uses on Crop X aren't a problem for whatever reason, surely nothing but corn (or whichever) pollen has still gotta be a pretty lousy diet for a bee; and what are they supposed to eat when the crop is done?

    The news article says this place was the guy's "normal bee yard territory". That's a little vague really, but if it's meant that it's his normal bee yard period, did he have a significant kill last year at this time? If he did, why on Earth is he still keeping bees there? If not, has he tried to find out whether the corn farmers are using something new this year that killed his bees where last year's chemicals did not? Does he have any kind of rapport with them?
    Beeless since 2012; coming back in 2014. Suffering from apicultural withdrawal!

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by melliferal View Post
    ...The news article says this place was the guy's "normal bee yard territory". That's a little vague really, but if it's meant that it's his normal bee yard period, did he have a significant kill last year at this time? If he did, why on Earth is he still keeping bees there? ...
    Your logic is corrupted! If I have land and I devote this land to keep bees - this is my rights! If somebody grow corn next to my property - it is fine as long as dust or other elements from THAT territory pollute MY territory. Do you understand? You suggest nonsense - if I have bees in Santa Monica, you suggest that if somebody emits pollution which landed on my property, than - I have to move away from my property? This is crazy! Bees as well as birds and aircraft have right to fly anywhere as long as they do not create a nuisance. At the same time, it is not OK to purposely emit pollution, which contaminates my property. One business should not affect another.
    Last edited by cerezha; 05-20-2013 at 04:50 PM.
    Серёжа, Sergey

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by cerezha View Post
    Your logic is corrupted! If I have land and I devote this land to keep bees - this is my rights! If somebody grow corn next to my property - it is fine as long as dust or other elements from THAT territory pollute MY territory. Do you understand? You suggest nonsense - if I have bees in Santa Monica, you suggest that if somebody emits pollution which landed on my property, than - I have to move away from my property? This is crazy! Bees as well as birds and aircraft have right to fly anywhere as long as they do not create nuisance. At the same time, it is not OK to purposely emit pollution, which contaminates my property. One business should not affect another.
    By the same logic if you fart, the neighbors should be able to sue and shut you down......
    Working within normal good neighbor policies should be a standard........ in the mean time, I suggest some of us hold our breath so as not to offend the neighbors....

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by gmcharlie View Post
    By the same logic if you fart, the neighbors should be able to sue and shut you down...
    This why we have the law! If it is proven, that my bee creates a nuisance to the neighbor - than yes, my exact bee(s), who caused the problem should be punished, it is fair. But on the same note, if neighbor decided to do a massive renovation on his site and dust from his activity contaminates my precious book-collection (for instance) I will sue him for my property damage. Mitigation of the dust is a responsibility of the "creator". I do not know, I guess, many people who supported contaminated dust are living on another planet (different from mine), because, in our city, developer must obtain a permit not only from the city but also from neighbors to do the job, which involves heavy equipment, excessive dust, noise etc. They actually have to present the plan, how they mitigate the issues, which needs to be approved by the City. In Russia (not US ), one guy paid a few million $$ compensation to the owner of rare religious books - for the dust. Apparently, dust from renovation affected the books
    Серёжа, Sergey

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Large pesticide bee-kill in minnesota

    Quote Originally Posted by cerezha View Post
    Your logic is corrupted! If I have land and I devote this land to keep bees - this is my rights! If somebody grow corn next to my property - it is fine as long as dust or other elements from THAT territory pollute MY territory. Do you understand? You suggest nonsense - if I have bees in Santa Monica, you suggest that if somebody emits pollution which landed on my property, than - I have to move away from my property? This is crazy!
    Well no, you don't "have" to. Neither does that guy; he's free to stay there every year and let his bees die and then complain.

    But it's not a simple property dispute. If the bees leave your property and get poisoned on someone else's land, you can't straight out call that a violation of your rights. It's not your fault; but he also didn't ask your bees to come forage from his corn, and telling him what he can't do with his corn on his own property is just as crazy.

    It's complicated. And it will take many years to "resolve", and the resolution might not be in your bees' favor - and in the mean time your bees will keep getting killed. No matter who is "right", the bees will still die. So yes, I would move. I would rather have living bees than be right with a bunch of dead bees. You pick your battles.
    Beeless since 2012; coming back in 2014. Suffering from apicultural withdrawal!

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