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Bees Poisoned by Drugs Giant Bayer

The petion to stop chemical manufacturer Bayer selling Clothianidin, A.K.A 'Poncho' is gaining momentum as the the link between the use of the pesticide and it's effect on Bee populations is given a boost by leaked revelations.

The environmental news website Change.org has reports that:

This all adds up to some serious questions about the government contributing to Colony Collapse Disorder as they knowingly allowed Bayer to poison bees. And this is about a lot more than honey production … native habitats, and as much as one-third of America's food supply, rely on the pollination provided by bees.

In UK, the pesticide is still widely available for use and has been marketed to growers of wheat, barley, and beets despite warnings from the EPA:

Available data indicate that clothianidin on corn and canola should result in minimal acute toxic risk to birds. However, assessments show that exposure to treated seeds through ingestion may result in chronic toxic risk to non-endangered and endangered small birds (e.g., songbirds) and acute/chronic toxicity risk to non-endangered and endangered mammals. Clothianidin has the potential for toxic chronic exposure to honey bees, as well as other nontarget pollinators, through the translocation of clothianidin residues in nectar and pollen. Clothianidin should not present a direct acute or chronic risk to freshwater and estuarine/marine fish, or a risk to terrestrial or aquatic vascular and nonvascular plants. 

The fate and disposition of clothianidin in the environment suggest a compound that is a systemic insecticide that is persistent and mobile, stable to hydrolysis, and has potential to leach to ground water, as well as runoff to surface waters. (EPA 2003)

…Clothianidin is highly toxic to honey bees on an acute contact basis (LD50 > 0.0439 μg/bee). It has the potential for toxic chronic exposure to honey bees, as well as other nontarget pollinators, through the translocation of clothianidin residues in nectar and pollen. In honey bees, the effects of this toxic chronic exposure may include lethal (notice the word is lethal, not harmful) and/or sub-lethal effects in the larvae and reproductive effects in the queen.


As yet protests and lobbying has been limited to beekeeping associations such as Biobees however there are some indications that a wider protest may be available for the public to take part in.

More info on Clothianidin and Colony Collapse.

 


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