Massive Bee Kill Update

argylesock says… This is a terrible tragedy. Now that some of the dead bees have been tested, it’s clear that they were killed by dinotefuran. That’s a neonicotinoid. Three neonics were recently banned in Europe (for two years, starting at the end of this year). Here’s the press release announcing the European ban. I hope that jneal, who wrote the article I’m reblogging, can explain whether or not dinetofuran is another name for one of the three neonics banned in Europe: clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiamethoxam.

[Edit] I’ve since learned that these are four separate neonics.

Living With Insects Blog

Yesterday, I posted about a massive bumblebee kill in Wilsonville, Oregon. At least 25,000 bumblebees were killed. The Oregon, Department of Agriculture (ODA) has tested bees and trees at the site and confirmed that bee deaths are directly due to exposure to the insecticide Dinetofuran. The trees had recently been treated to control aphids.

ODA and the Xerces Society (which advocates for protection of endangered species) are collaborating to cover the trees with netting to exclude bees. Hopefully, the netting will work like a bee veil for the trees. However, much of the damage is already done and many of the bumblebees in the immediate vicinity are dead.

This massive bee kill is due to human negligence. Bees (including bumblebees) are pollen feeders. Bee foragers collect pollen from plants (including trees) and store it in their nest. The pollen is mixed with nectar to make “bee bread”, a nutritious food…

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About argylesock

I wrote a PhD about veterinary parasitology so that's the starting point for this blog. But I'm now branching out into other areas of biology and into popular science writing. I'll write here about science that happens in landscapes, particularly farmland, and about science involving interspecific interactions. Datasets and statistics get my attention. Exactly where this blog will lead? That's a journey that I'm on and I hope you'll come with me.
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