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Wow is there anyone NOT speaking at that conference. Quite a lineup.
 

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We leave for Guelph on Friday. My masters degree daughter morphs into pig keeper extrordinare while we're gone. (The bees will take care of themselves - though there is a purple deep or two around someplace from when she was 12)
 

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We leave for Guelph on Friday. My masters degree daughter morphs into pig keeper extrordinare while we're gone. (The bees will take care of themselves - though there is a purple deep or two around someplace from when she was 12)
You traveling on horseback? The conference doesn't start until Monday.
 

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by Rav4, not horse. I see an eye Doc tomorrow AM and if he decides to dilate my eyes, that will slow us down a mite. Two nights on the road before Guelph - One night on the return. This is vacation don't cha know.
 

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Anyone attending EAS, please introduce yourself! I'll be attending all four "Train the Trainer" sessions tomorrow and working on the MB exam on Tuesday. I haven't planned out the rest of the week yet! (Yes we made it to Guelph, though going around Toronto was nail chewing time. We made it in time to see some of the Highland festival in Fergus.)
 

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Post some pictures for those of us who will be missing the EAS :gh:this year...Got a case of Lyme disease hanging round the orchards this Spring.
 

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I just got home from the short course at the U of Guelph EAS 2015 conference. I'm wondering what everyone's take was on the workshops they were able to take and Wednesday's panel discussion.

I feel a mixed message came across about neonicotinoids; that's ok and expected, but am struggling to put my thoughts down without sounding, as they cautioned us not to be, "biased". I feel like perhaps these wonderful scientist who respected us enough to present their findings and provide a panel discussion with questions... wonderful thing EAS did to organize this... but is it possible there is science they didn't present for fear it would be over our heads or possible they dumbed down what they did present too much for it to make sense? One beekeeper asked a question suggesting the "take home message" was that at the end of each class she felt she was being told the science proved that neoticotiniods are not all that harmful to honey bees; yet most classes began as well with a statement that it is an undisputed fact that they do kill honey bees.

I am glad to hear the facts about the ineffectiveness of chemicals in the hive for control of mites and the recommendations toward organic treatments. I saw one presentation by a student of a study of cumulative effects of neonicotinoids on honey bee cognitive abilities; but again, the conclusion was it was not enough to hurt the colony super-organism. The panel discussion conclusion is that banning neonics is not the issue. "Get out and vote?" hmmmm...... The professor from Indiana who suggested this also said he can find no data or evidence as to the effectiveness of neonicotinoids on the targeted insects. He may not be a beekeeper because he did not know, when asked by a beekeeper, that honey bees also take water into the hive and was that measured? It was thoroughly explained that one issue with Neonicotinoids is that they are water soluble.

I have to believe there is better science going on out there or that they just had to be selective about what they presented or that they have yet to be funded for some real world studies. The comment was continually made that they were struggling to be able to reproduce in the real world of beekeeping the results they see in the lab.

So would love to hear some thoughts about all this FROM THOSE WHO ATTENDED - Thanks. I hate controversy, but it is what it is. So appreciated the scientist from Italy, Franco Mutinelli who frankly explained the moratorium efforts on neonicotinoids in Europe. Despite his limited English and the charisma of the other speakers on the Wed night panel, it seemed most questions were directed to him from us humble beekeepers.
 

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I did not attend the Wednesday night panel. I planned to but PP restaurant service got me back to campus late. While there were divergent thoughts regarding pesticides presented at the conference, my thinking wasn't changed all that much: Pesticides (including Neonics) are designed to kill insects or otherwise keep them from having negative impact. The world (and the bees) would be better off if there was less pesticide use. Still, about 3% of bee deaths are blamed on pesticides. There are a bunch of other things to worry about that have a greater impact on bees than the Neonics. (like nutrition, forage quality and availability, etc.)

What we really don't know are the consequences of tank mixes. Are the effects merely additive? What evidence there is indicates not. Herbicides especially are worrisome - not Roundup in particular but Herbicides as a class.
 
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