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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    Sacramento, Calif. USA
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    272

    Default Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    July 2013 article about how colony numbers in the USA have actually increased slightly since CCD hit in 2006 and also tells us why the economic impact of CCD has been minimal:
    http://qz.com/101585/everyone-calm-d...ee-pocalypse/#

  2. #2
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    Mar 2013
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    eolia, lincoln county, mo.
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    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Blue that is a great article. It provides a balanced no panic view that should calm many concerns. Thanks

  3. #3
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    Apr 2013
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    Eugene, Oregon USA
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    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Lol, my statistics prof always told me that you could twist the numbers any way you want in order to support your view/agenda.

    While it is true that the number of colonies has stayed roughly the same over the past 15 years since neonics came into vogue, it's also true that honey yields are at near record lows. For example, in 1998 there were about 2.6 million hives in the US that produced 2,220,000 lbs of honey. 2,005,000 lbs in 1999, 2,100,000 lbs in 2000. Since the mid 90's (around the time neonics were introduced), there has been a steady decrease in honey yields--a metric that many bee researchers use to measure bee health. Indeed 2013's harvest of only 1,480,000 lbs is the lowest US honey harvest in decades:

    http://www.ers.usda.gov/data-product...ref=collection

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
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    Camas, WA
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    1,922

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Quote Originally Posted by BigDawg View Post
    my statistics prof always told me that you could twist the numbers any way you want in order to support your view/agenda.
    ...and it looks like you just proved it to be true. For those who struggle to understand BigDawg below is a link to help you understand his hometown and frame of mind. I live next to town #5 and have a farm next to town #1 so I'm used to interpreting the different language. Corporation = "bad company" and chemical = "bad substance". After you understand the language the conversation is easier.

    http://blog.estately.com/2013/07/17-...s-for-hippies/
    Bruce

  5. #5
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    Apr 2013
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    Eugene, Oregon USA
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    323

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    I see, so since I live in Eugene, I must be a hippie, right? Lol, you know nothing about me Bruce, but feel free to cast aspersions and generalizations around if that makes you feel better!

    Quote Originally Posted by beedeetee View Post
    ...and it looks like you just proved it to be true. For those who struggle to understand BigDawg below is a link to help you understand his hometown and frame of mind. I live next to town #5 and have a farm next to town #1 so I'm used to interpreting the different language. Corporation = "bad company" and chemical = "bad substance". After you understand the language the conversation is easier.

    http://blog.estately.com/2013/07/17-...s-for-hippies/

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
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    9,333

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Quote Originally Posted by BigDawg View Post
    I see, so since I live in Eugene, I must be a hippie, right?
    Well you did say you smoke, and you have harsh words for the tobacco companies, so one has to assume you're not smoking cigarettes, cause that would be two-faced.
    Regards, Barry

  7. #7
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    Apr 2013
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    Eugene, Oregon USA
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    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Guilty Barry! I do smoke the occasional cigar--like 5 or 6 a year, but my profession is not one that allows for smoking anything "Eugenian."

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    Well you did say you smoke, and you have harsh words for the tobacco companies, so one has to assume you're not smoking cigarettes, cause that would be two-faced.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Camas, WA
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    1,922

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Hey BigDawg, I hope there's no hard feelings. We have been kidding our Eugene friends (yes we have them) and relatives (yes we have them) and I saw your statistics post. I actually went to the Oregon Country Fair again couple of years ago. This year we just drove by on our way back from the coast to view the spectacle.
    Bruce

  9. #9
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    Apr 2013
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    Eugene, Oregon USA
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    323

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    No problem Bruce! Eugene is indeed hippie heaven, but that's one of the things I kind of like about it. I can assure you that if you ever saw a photo of me you would never use my name and the word "hippie" in the same sentence again!

    Quote Originally Posted by beedeetee View Post
    Hey BigDawg, I hope there's no hard feelings. We have been kidding our Eugene friends (yes we have them) and relatives (yes we have them) and I saw your statistics post. I actually went to the Oregon Country Fair again couple of years ago. This year we just drove by on our way back from the coast to view the spectacle.

  10. #10
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    Feb 2006
    Location
    Herrick, SD USA
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    4,246

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Quote Originally Posted by BigDawg View Post
    Lol, my statistics prof always told me that you could twist the numbers any way you want in order to support your view/agenda.

    While it is true that the number of colonies has stayed roughly the same over the past 15 years since neonics came into vogue, it's also true that honey yields are at near record lows. For example, in 1998 there were about 2.6 million hives in the US that produced 2,220,000 lbs of honey. 2,005,000 lbs in 1999, 2,100,000 lbs in 2000. Then starting in 2000, there has been a steady decrease in honey yields--a metric that many bee researchers use to measure bee health. Indeed 2013's harvest of only 1,480,000 lbs is the lowest US honey harvest in decades:

    http://www.ers.usda.gov/data-product...ref=collection
    I agree.....with your first sentence.
    Honey production alone is a real, real poor indicator of bee health. I seriously doubt any bee researchers thinks this honey production data proves much of anything. Most everyone has strong hives early in the summer. Honey producers are at the mercy of changing farming practices and crops. The big picture is that hive numbers have decreased as bee pasturage has disappeared. Little CRP remains, pastures and alfalfa fields have steadily been replaced by corn and beans. Its just the new reality brought forth by high land valuations and high commodity prices. Now with the advent of almond pollination and high honey prices, more and more bees needing a place to summer are being squeezed into areas with less and less forage. 3/4 of a million hives in the Dakotas alone in 2012 for a combined yield average of less than 70 lbs. per hive.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  11. #11
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    Apr 2011
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    Sacramento, Calif. USA
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    272

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Quote Originally Posted by jim lyon View Post
    Honey producers are at the mercy of changing farming practices and crops. The big picture is that hive numbers have decreased as bee pasturage has disappeared. Little CRP remains, pastures and alfalfa fields have steadily been replaced by corn and beans.
    The anti-pesticide activist groups display little interest in the forage issue, but instead spend their time campaigning for bans on neonic seed treatments:
    http://imageshack.com/a/img69/6596/pgzp.jpg

    Indeed, a few days ago on it's Facebook page Oregon's Xerces Society poked fun of Bayer & Syngenta's emphasis on improving bee health via better beekeeping and increasing bee forage:
    Uploaded with ImageShack.com

  12. #12
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    Dec 1999
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    DuPage County, Illinois USA
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    9,333

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Quote Originally Posted by BigDawg View Post
    While it is true that the number of colonies has stayed roughly the same over the past 15 years since neonics came into vogue, it's also true that honey yields are at near record lows.
    Are you seriously saying that low honey yields are a direct cause of neonics?! I'm thinkin' it's time to create a neonic smiley, or "the neonic card"
    Regards, Barry

  13. #13
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    Apr 2013
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    Eugene, Oregon USA
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    323

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Lol, no, I'm not saying that Barry. I don't think neonics are the single cause of anything (well, except hive kills from planter dust)--but I think they are having a negative impact on non-target pollinators like bees. It remains to be seen how big of an impact.

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    Are you seriously saying that low honey yields are a direct cause of neonics?! I'm thinkin' it's time to create a neonic smiley, or "the neonic card"

  14. #14
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    Feb 2006
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    Herrick, SD USA
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    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Aspersions? Generalizations? Who says there is anything wrong with being a hippie? Arent they the folks that hate all chemicals, excepting, of course, the ones in their drug of choice?
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Fort Walton Beach, Florida
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    1,251

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Quote Originally Posted by jim lyon View Post
    Aspersions? Generalizations? Who says there is anything wrong with being a hippie? Arent they the folks that hate all chemicals, excepting, of course, the ones in their drug of choice?
    Hey now... I'm an ancient hippie, though it's been several decades since I flew the freak flag on a regular basis. (Short hair, no tie-dye in my closet, don't own a pair of sandals, etc.) Hippies are like everyone else, there are smart ones and dumb ones.

    Unfortunately for the brand, it's mainly the dumb ones who get the press. It's that way for most minorities, isn't it?

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Ka'u Hawaii
    Posts
    169

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    "While it is true that the number of colonies has stayed roughly the same over the past 15 years since neonics came into vogue, it's also true that honey yields are at near record lows."

    Perhaps this is because so many have discovered that the easy money is in the ever expanding almond pollination in California, while the revenue per pollinating hive is way high also.

  17. #17
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    Sep 2012
    Location
    Lutz, FL, USA
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    77

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueDiamond View Post
    ... actually increased slightly since CCD hit in 2006
    Don't mean to ruin "pesticide lobby" parade here but what does it prove? That neonicotinoids have no affect on bees? You can do better than that.

    It would be interesting to see statistics which would show how much money has been spent historically to maintain these numbers. Naturally if a commercial bee keeper looses half of his/her bees he or she is going to build it back up, but it is not going to be free. If there is demand for bees it is going to be filled, the question is how much it is going to cost. The only thing that this study proves is that so far commercial beekeepers have been able to keep up with the demand. Barely. I'm gonna go out on a limb here and suggest that agricultural output of plants requiring artificial pollination has grown in the same time period? The number of pollinators per unit of aforementioned product has decreased despite all the efforts. I wouldn't celebrate just yet.

    Since we are analyzing the total numbers of colonies lets see what is going on in not managed colonies? Are they numbers being affected? There is really no non-managed colonies left. What does your statistics say about that?

    I'm not here to prove that pesticides alone (whichever flavor they might be) are the only cause to blame for decimating bee population. Just don't kid yourself, it is decimated. I think it is safe to assume that pesticides are playing a big role in it. So far commercial bee keepers have been able to keep up with the demand. But I would guess that there is going to be a breaking point when throwing money at the problem is not going to be enough.
    Last edited by ArtSmart; 08-02-2013 at 08:05 AM.

  18. #18
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    Feb 2006
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    Herrick, SD USA
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    4,246

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Bee kills from pesticides have been going on for decades. Nothing new there at all. A short history lesson might clarify things a bit:
    http://www.beeculture.com/storycms/i...y&recordID=541
    While I wont agree with the term "decimated" in describing the bee industry I will agree that for lots of different reasons the bee industry faces a challenging and uncertain future, but then I remember my father telling me the same thing in the 1960's. "Get some education", he told me, "I dont think this beekeeping business is going to last much longer." That was nearly 50 years ago.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  19. #19
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    Oct 2010
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    Baker Oregon
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    2,367

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”


    You know I would be much more tolerant of hippies, if they would only bathe. Eugene is a nice place, but the negatives out way the positives by far.

    PS if you have an opportunity to go out for dinner in Eugene this is very high on the list. Beppe & Gianni's Trattoria http://www.beppeandgiannis.net/
    Dan Hayden 4 Years. 9 hives. Tx Free. USDA Zone 5b.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Eugene, Oregon USA
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    323

    Default Re: Everyone calm down, there is no “bee-pocalypse”

    Actually BlueDiamond, it would appear that the AIA and USDA don't agree with your rosey outlook on the state of the bees in the U.S.:

    "Preliminary survey results indicate that 31.1% of managed honey bee colonies in the United States were lost during the 2012/2013 winter. This represents an increase in loss of 9.2 points or 42% over the previous 2011/2012 winter’s total losses that were estimated at 21.9% (Figure 1). This level of loss is on par with the 6 year average total loss of 30.5%2.

    On average, U.S. beekeepers lost 45.1% of the colonies in their operation during the winter of 2012/2013. This is a 19.8 point or 78.2% increase in the average operational loss compared to the previous winter (2011/2012), which was estimated at 25.3%.

    http://beeinformed.org/2013/05/winte...vey-2012-2013/
    Last edited by BigDawg; 08-08-2013 at 12:10 PM.

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