QWhy is it killing bees?

Why is it killing bees?

AExpert Answer

The scientific community recognizes that bee health is a very complex issue. In fact, a report from the proceedings of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences indicated that bees may be dying not from a single toxin or disease, but rather from a variety of factors that include introduced pests and parasites, microbial diseases, inadequate diet and loss of genetic diversity. In its assessment of neonicotinoid insecticides, the Environmental Protection Agency stated that it “is not aware of any data indicating that honey bee declines or the incidence of CCD [colony collapse disorder] in the U.S. is correlated with the use of pesticides in general or with the use of neonicotinoids in particular.”  Modern seed treatments reduce the amount of insecticides in the environment and target pesticides only at the insects that are actually feeding on food crops, thus protecting other, often beneficial insects, including bees. Moreover, even though seed treatments make neonicotinoids part of the plant, the amount reaching bees in pollen grains is extremely tiny and not thought to be a factor in CCD or bee mortality.

Posted on August 31, 2018
There is actually a great deal of genetic diversity among the hybrids and varieties that have also had a gene added by genetic engineering. Once an engineered version of the plant is developed, it goes back into the regular breeding system which is used to develop lines that are adapted to different soils and climates. Now from a pest evolution perspective it isn’t wise to depend on only one Bt gene for insect resistance or one gene for tolerance to one herbicide. That... Read More
Posted on February 28, 2018
Thank you for your question. We’ve compiled a variety of responses from a few of our experts discussing pesticides, the environment and GMOs which we hope will answer your question. Andrew Kniss, associate professor of Weed Ecology & Management, Department of Plant Sciences at the University of Wyoming, addresses pesticides and the environment in a response to a similar question. ”Once applied, a vast majority of pesticides do not remain in the environment indefinitely. There... Read More
Posted on February 23, 2018
Herbicide cost per acre depends on a wide number of variables including (but not limited to) weed species present, farm location, timing of application, crop seeding rate, competitiveness of crop, herbicides used, length of growing season in that location, etc. Thinking about herbicide cost is only one of many factors to consider regarding input cost as well as revenue expectations. There are fertility costs, seed costs (including traits), fuel costs, cost of insect and disease management,... Read More