Edit Module
Toledo, OH/Monroe County, MI Edition
Bookmark and Share Email this page Email Print this page Print Feed Feed

Bee Killers

Neonic Pesticides Again Linked to Decline

kenkuza/Shutterstock.com

A study in the journal Nature Communications examined wild bee populations relative to the use of controversial neonic (neonicotinoid) pesticides from 1994 to 2011, and discovered that extinction rates paralleled their use on plants throughout the country.

The 34 species analyzed experienced a 10 percent population drop across the board, with five of the species seeing a decrease of 20 percent or more, and the most-impacted group declining by 30 percent. Researchers say this indicates that up to half of the population decline could be attributed to the use of neonics.

“It contributes, but there is a bigger picture,” says Jeffrey Pettis, an entomologist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture Beltsville Bee Laboratory, in Maryland. Other factors are thought to include parasites such as varroa mites and nosema fungus (a bacterial disease known as foulbrood) plus viruses, drought and loss of habitat.

Meanwhile, the Friends of the Earth (FOE) environmental group has launched a petition calling on the Ace and True Value hardware companies to follow Lowe’s and Home Depot’s example of phasing out the pesticides. FOE says, “If these garden retailers don’t act fast, they’ll lose customers. A new poll shows that 66 percent of Americans prefer to shop at Lowe’s and Home Depot because they’ve committed to stop selling bee-killing pesticides.”


Take action at Tinyurl.com/BanNeonicsPetition.


This article appears in the July 2017 issue of Natural Awakenings.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Pillow Self-Talk

Spending a few minutes each night with three purposeful questions will help us to rest content and awaken with joy.

Eco-Upgrades for America’s Landmarks

From the Grand Canyon to the Gateway Arch to the Empire State Building, America’s landmarks are making the old new again with Earth-friendly changes.

Five Reasons to Love a Cat

Cats are low-maintenance, health-enhancing roommates; they’re also surprisingly eco-friendly.

Eye Contact Syncs Baby and Adult Brainwaves

When an adult looks into the eyes of a baby, a synchronization of brain waves occurs that supports early learning and communication skills, say Cambridge University researchers.

U.S. Midlife Women Choosing Natural Health Care

More than 80 percent of midlife women reported using complementary approaches in a recent survey, with herbal teas and vitamins the top choices.

Add your comment: