More Than Pesticides Are Killing Bees

From CATCH THE BUZZ by Kim Flottum (Bee Culture Magazine) 5/7/12

Hanna Nordhaus wrote a book recently detailing the life and times of John Miller, a commercial beekeeper who spends time in California and North Dakota. It took her over a year to gather the information she needed for the book…the whole beekeeping cycle the Millers spend each year, back and forth…and during that time she gleaned much about the beekeeping industry, the science and the business of honey bees, and a bit about the lives of those who move from here to there with bees on the truck. She writes a blog for boingboing, and I stumbled across it just today. It was published a week or so ago here. And, you can find out much more about her book Beekeeper’s Lament, reviewed in Bee Culture by Gary Shilling recently, here.

We send this detailed and somewhat lengthy piece out on the BUZZ because it is a reasonable voice in the cacophony of noise recently raised to damn all pesticides, and some in particular. Of course pesticides and honey bees are not meant for each other. But there is more to the story, more that needs to be done before we banish these materials forevermore. The science that has recently been published has been flawed and biased say some. Worse, say others, it had an agenda. The voices of both sides of this debate are linked here so you can read for yourself the arguments for and against. Randy Oliver offers a tidal wave of evidence not against pesticides, but aimed squarely at the techniques used to reach the conclusions to which these papers sunk to get their wrongful end and I urge you to read his comments on his web page. Sadly, the author as declined to comment on Mr. Oliver's querys. 

Moreover, the prestigious IBRA also reaches the same conclusions, conclusions published in Bee Culture several months ago…that there are more wrongs in the world of honey bees than simply pesticides. Many more wrongs, and all should be fixed.

Kim Flottum 

Here then are Hanna Nordhaus’ thoughts... Read more:

(The above brought to you by CATCH THE BUZZ (Kim Flottum) Bee Culture, The Magazine of American Beekeeping, published by A.I. Root Company.)