Bayer’s neonicotinoids kill birds, new research


This video says about itself:

Bees Dying Off, Colony Collapse

29 aug. 2010

Imagine a world without bees..

Imidacloprid is the most widely used insecticide in the world and Bayer´s best-selling pesticide (2009 sales: €606 million). The substance is often used as seed-dressing, especially for maize, sunflower and rapeseed. The beginning of the marketing of imidacloprid coincided with the occurrence of large bee deaths, first in France, later on also in many other European countries, Canada, the US and Brazil.

After huge bee mortality in Germany in 2008 which was shown to be caused by neonicotinoid pesticides the Coalition against Bayer Dangers accused the Bayer management of downplaying the risks of imidacloprid, submitting deficient studies to authorities and thereby accepting huge losses of honey bees in many parts of the world. At the same time, German authorities imposed a ban on the use of imidacloprid and its successor product, clothianidin, on maize. Italy and Slovenia imposed a similar ban.

In France imidacloprid has been banned as a seed dressing for sunflowers (since 1999) and maize (since 2004). In 2003 the Comité Scientifique et Technique, convened by the French government, declared that the treatment of seeds with imidacloprid leads to “significant risks for bees”. The consumption of contaminated pollen can cause an increased mortality of care-taking-bees. When individual bees were exposed to sublethal doses their foraging activity decreased and they became disorientated, which researchers concluded “can in the course of time damage the entire colony”. Clothianidin was never approved in France.

Music: ‘Through Time and Space’ by Elixirion.

From Nature:

Declines in insectivorous birds are associated with high neonicotinoid concentrations

Caspar A. Hallmann, Ruud P. B. Foppen, Chris A. M. van Turnhout, Hans de Kroon & Eelke Jongejans

09 July 2014

Recent studies have shown that neonicotinoid insecticides have adverse effects on non-target invertebrate species1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. Invertebrates constitute a substantial part of the diet of many bird species during the breeding season and are indispensable for raising offspring7.

We investigated the hypothesis that the most widely used neonicotinoid insecticide, imidacloprid,

a Bayer corporation product

has a negative impact on insectivorous bird populations. Here we show that, in the Netherlands, local population trends were significantly more negative in areas with higher surface-water concentrations of imidacloprid. At imidacloprid concentrations of more than 20 nanograms per litre, bird populations tended to decline by 3.5 per cent on average annually.

Additional analyses revealed that this spatial pattern of decline appeared only after the introduction of imidacloprid to the Netherlands, in the mid-1990s. We further show that the recent negative relationship remains after correcting for spatial differences in land-use changes that are known to affect bird populations in farmland. Our results suggest that the impact of neonicotinoids on the natural environment is even more substantial than has recently been reported and is reminiscent of the effects of persistent insecticides in the past. Future legislation should take into account the potential cascading effects of neonicotinoids on ecosystems.

Bees follow queen, video


This video is about a queen bee which has landed on a building; her ‘subjects’ follow.

If a young queen is born in a bee hive, then about half of the honeybees will follow the old queen in searching a new place to live.

Niklas Haverkate from the Netherlands made the video.

Neonicotinoids kill bees, new research


This video from Britain says about itself:

Pesticides (neonicotinoids) and Bee Behaviour

3 August 2013

A science experiment showing the effect of pesticides (neonicotinoids) on bee behaviour. From the BBC Horizon documentary titled What’s Killing Our Bees?

From Wildlife Extra:

Neonicotinoids do cause significant damage to ecosystem

For the first time scientists say they are able to provide conclusive evidence that the systemic pesticides neonicotinoids and fipronil (neonics) have caused significant damage to a wide range of invertebrates, including bees.

The IUCN Task Force Systemic Pesticides (a group of global, independent scientists) analysed 800 peer-reviewed reports.

They found that there is clear evidence of a serious risk to honeybees and other pollinators such as butterflies and to a wide range of other invertebrates such as earthworms and vertebrates including birds.

“The evidence is very clear. We are witnessing a threat to the productivity of our natural and farmed environment equivalent to that posed by organophosphates or DDT,” said lead author Dr Jean-Marc Bonmatin of The National Centre for Scientific Research in France.

The most affected groups appeared to be terrestrial invertebrates such as earthworms which are exposed at high levels in soil and plants.

The next most affected group is insect pollinators such as bees and butterflies which are exposed to high contamination through air and plants and medium exposure levels through water.

Bird populations are also at risk from eating crop seeds treated with systemic insecticides, and reptile numbers have declined due to depletion of their insect prey.

“The findings of the WIA are gravely worrying,” said Maarten Bijleveld van Lexmond, Chair of the Task Force.

“We can now clearly see that neonics and fipronil pose a risk to ecosystem functioning and services which go far beyond concerns around one species and which really must warrant government and regulatory attention.”

Bee blows nectar bubbles, video


This is a video about a bee in the Netherlands.

According to Beerke, the maker of the video, this bee is blowing nectar bubbles, in order to concentrate the flower’s nectar.

Honeybees on the move, video


This is a video about a honeybee colony which had temporarily settled on a pole in the countryside in the Netherlands.

Luuk de Greef made the video.

Local honey bees are far more likely to flourish than imported honey bees say scientists: here.

Bees, butterflies in garden, video


This is a video about bumblebees, honeybees, butterflies and other insects in a garden in the Netherlands.

George van Pelt made the video.

Butterfly and bee drinking crocodile tears in Costa Rica


This video says about itself:

Butterfly and bee drink crocodile tears – La Selva, Costa Rica

A Julia butterfly (Dryas iulia) and a solitary bee (Centris sp.) sip tears from the eyes of a spectacled caiman (Caiman crocodilus) on Costa Rica‘s Puerto Viejo River. Filmed by ecologist Carlos de la Rosa, Director of the La Selva Biological Research Station, in December 2013.

Carlos L de la Rosa (2014): Additional observations of lachryphagous butterflies and bees. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 12(4): 210.

See also here.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Bee digging nest, video


This video says about itself (translated from Dutch):

8th April 2014

Andrena vaga is a solitary bee, rare in the Netherlands. Only the females dig a nest, and they mainly feed on willow pollen. Filmed by René Peeters.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Costa Rican flowers, butterflies and bees


Orchid bee

This is a photo of an Euglossa orchid bee. Photographed in Alajuela, Costa Rica, on 14 March 2014.

Orchid bees are important pollinators in Costa Rica.

The orchid bee of the photo was probably attracted by the beautiful flowers nearby.

Flower, Alajuela

Flower, Alajuela

Zebra longwing

Apart from the postman butterfly which I already mentioned in another blog post, these flowers also attracted other butterflies, like this zebra longwing.

Butterfly, Costa Rica, 14 March 2014

There was also the butterfly on this photo. I am not sure about its species, as there are various orange-coloured butterflies in Costa Rica.

Stay tuned for more on the Poas volcano, and other Costa Rica stuff!

Enhanced by Zemanta

Dutch local authority bans Monsanto’s Roundup


This video from the USA is called Dr. Huber Explains Problems with Monsanto‘s Roundup Ready GMO Alfalfa & Coexistence.

Dick de Vos, local councillor for the Party for the Animals in Leiden, the Netherlands, reports in an article about bumblebees, that Leiden local authority will ban the poisonous Roundup, made by Monsanto corporation, in 2015.

Mr de Vos says this is good news for bees, which die from Roundup; though the ban should have been earlier.

An earlier blog post on action against Roundup in Leiden is here.

Enhanced by Zemanta