Beekeepers says government agencies aren't acting on apparent cause of bee deaths
Published Friday, November 1, 2013 6:40PM EDT
Tens of millions of bees are dead and more are dying every year, but beekeepers are still waiting for action on what they believe is the cause.
According to Saugeen County honey farmer Dave Schuit, “We need to wake up!”
Schuit blames a coating used on corn and soybean seeds containing neonicotinoids.
Neonicotinoids are supposed to kill pests that feed on the crops, but Schuit and several other beekeepers in Ontario say the coating is killing their bees.
A Health Canada study of the massive dieoffs at nearly 4,000 beehives in Ontario and Quebec showed that in 80 per cent of the dead bees there was a detectable neonicotinoid residue.
But the head of the Bruce County Federation of Agriculture remains skeptical.
Patrick Jileson says “These [neonicotinoids] have been studied. They were approved by the Pest Management Regulatory Agency. It’s nice to see them studied it again.”
Health Canada’s pesticide regulatory body says the current used of neonicotinoids “isn’t sustainable” and are soliciting ideas from beekeepers and crop farmers until December 12.
Schuit says there’s no more time for studies and he wants an all-out ban now.