07 Apr '11, 12am

Should some pesticides be banned to protect bees?

Now, to me, Pettis' testimony is a ringing endorsement for a ban on neonicotinoids. Think about his three factors. "Poor nutrition" stems mainly from lack of access to diverse fields consisting of a wide variety of flowering plants -- for example, bees don't eat very well in the vast areas of the country characterized by monocrop industrial-scale agriculture. But U.S. agriculture has been highly industrialized for decades, and hasn't changed dramatically since the early 2000s, when the U.S. bee population began to experience trouble. (Much as I'd like to see it, I doubt that the honeybee crisis will inspire U.S. regulators to demand the deindustrialization of agriculture.) Also, many commercial beekeepers feed their hives high-fructose corn syrup in the winter months. Again, that probably qualifies as "poor nutrition," but the practice predates the rise of colony collapse ...

Full article: http://www.grist.org/industrial-agriculture/2011-04-06-sh...

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