1 Aug 2011

Bee petition

Bee by Russ
As this blog has noted many times Britain's bees are under threat. The British Beekeepers Association has reported a fourth year of unacceptably high colony losses for its members.  The explanations for this vary. As the Ecologist reported, causes for continued decline in bee population have been attritubed to many things: from disease and habitat loss to GM crops, mites and mobile phones.

However there is lots to point to neonicotinoids being harmful - these are synthetic chemicals used as a coating for agricultural seeds and in pot plants. As The Ecologist notes: "These chemicals work by spreading throughout the plant and into the nectar and pollen that the bees eat. Neonics are 7,000 times more toxic than DDT, a chemical pesticide the UK government banned in 1984. Conservationists say that exposure to neonicotinoids, while not killing bees outright, actually weaken them and make them more susceptible to disease. Exposure to pesticides as a cause of bee death may have been underestimated."

Other countries have already taken preventive action by banning the use of neonicotinoids - including in France, Germany, Italy and Slovenia.
Please sign the Neals Yard Remedies petition, addressed to Secretary of State for Food, Environment & Rural Affairs Caroline Spelman, asking for a ban of neonicotinoids - this petition will be taken to Downing Street in October. Sign here.

Of course honeybees are only one - there are over 250 other native bees and there is evidence too that they can also be effected.

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