Harvard study links pesticides to bee deaths

Science on the Land

Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) in honeybees (Apis mellifera) can be linked with low-dose insecticides. Philip Case at the UK magazine Farmers Weekly tells us about research in the States, where CCD is a huge problem. This is a serious matter for all of us because without bees, we’d go hungry.

Here’s the press release from the Harvard School of Public Health. Here’s the research paper.

A team of scientists led by Dr Chensheng (Alex) Lu fed bees low doses of two neonicotinoids in sugar-water. Then they let the bees return to foraging from their hives. The sugar-water contained two of the neonics which, since last December, are under a temporary ban here in Europe. The insecticides these scientists used were imidacloprid and clothianidin, both made by the biotech giant Bayer.

So much for the pro-neonic view that I read (I don’t recall where)…

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