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August 11, 2014 at 8:00 AMComments: 1 Faves: 0

Dangers of Pesticides for Bees

By Jason More Blogs by This Author

There's been some high profile news on bee deaths and the dangers and destruction that can come with pesticide use for bees. Most recently, a crisis in Oregon that left bees in five colonies dead, leaves people grasping for reasons why such a tragedy could occur. With more and more people becoming aware of the potential dangers of chemicals and other unnatural products, pesticides have come under a lot of attack in recent years. But what exactly are the dangers of pesticides for bees? We've highlighted some of the problems here.

Recently, neonicotinoid pesticides have been recognized as very hazardous for bees and other pollinators. These insecticides can be highly toxic for honeybees and bumblebees, even though there has been no direct link named between this pesticide and colony collapse disorder.

However, there has been research that shows that this pesticide makes bees more vulnerable to pathogens and parasites. Chemical products that have been approved for lawns and other garden use can leave chemical residues and also have application rate directions that are 120 times higher than those that have been approved for agricultural crops.

This means that bees are being exposed to chemicals in record amounts and this is many times very lethal – not only for the insects but for humans, as we breathe the air that these pesticides infiltrate. After the bees ingest this, if it’s not immediate death, they will likely stumble on and carry the poison onto other areas of water and soil, which can build up and be dangerous for other parts of the earth and overall ecosystem.

Activists argue that poisons are just that – poisons. It doesn’t matter what quantity it is – poisons can be toxic and can have serious complications, usually death, contamination and irreversible pollution. Farmers and homeowners should be educated on the risks for certain pesticide use, reading product labels, educating themselves on which products are not toxic.   

It’s not just bees that are suffering, but in fact, other pollinators such as butterflies and bats. They pollinate millions upon millions worth of crops around the United States, but with harmful pesticides continuing to be used, bees and other insects in the ecosystem will continue to suffer. Without these pollinators, where would our food supply be? We’d be left with very little.

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1 Comment

  • Pesticides may protect the crop, but are killing the source. Is there a better way to deal with this dilemma?

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