Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The Evidence Mounts- Bee Problems


“What’s killing the bees?” Good question and one that’s partly addressed in an article written by Kim Flottum, an expert on bees, who submits material to CNN.

Though the evidence thus far collected is not as definitive as that with respect to ‘Headline’ and frogs, ag. chemicals certainly seem to be to blame.
Quotin’ directly from this article:

“Today, much if not most of that dietary reserve has been plowed under to make way for 100 million acres of ethanol-producing corn. This sterile desert has nothing to offer – except perhaps a tiny bit of the thousands of tons of agricultural pesticide applied to the corn, way back at planting time, that makes its way to the pollen collected by the bees, which is stored and eaten later. That’s not enough to kill a bee, but it adds another layer of stress. And, some suspect, the tipping point stress."

From my own experiences, me bein’ one who spends much time just standin’ and quietly observing nature here in this eco reserve, I’ve noticed a marked decline in honey bee activity. And especially around some of their most favored flowers during prime activity time durin’ the day.

Spiderwort is a particularly favored flower which opens afresh in the morning hours and then more er less closes up later in the day.

For a number of years we had chemical ag. much closer to our spiderwort clusters than we have today. I remember myself questioning, what’s happened ta the bees? Now that land that once grew corn and is controlled by us, has been converted to prairie. And, guess what? The bees, in force, are back.


Ok. Butterflies: “Where have all the monarch butterflies gone?” Mother Nature News work.
These butterflies suffered a 59% decline at their overwintering location in Mexico, where records have been kept for the past 20 years. I think you all would have ta agree that’s a significant loss.

Quote from Mother Nature Network:

“As with honeybees, experts point to American farmland, which is increasingly planted with genetically modified soybean and corn engineered to withstand herbicide applications. These herbicides are wiping out milkweeds, on which monarch larvae feed, in critical feeding grounds in the American Midwest.”

Surprise! Again we have the combo of genetically modified corn and soybeans with new age herbicides and pesticides, winning the war against the environment. Whew!

“Com’on, Dave. Why don’t you tell about the unmarked aircraft,” several in this loose assemblage cry out.

“Not yet. Not yet. I ain’t done researching that one yet.”

The disappointment was what you’d call, palpable, I guess.


The dogs erupt again, announcin’ arrival of someone else’s vehicle. Unless there’s the beep of a horn, or a plea fer assistance, I don’t jump up ta see who’s here. This person, too, seems to be working their way past them barkin’ three, so I figure all is ok. I don’t know who it was that first recognized this late entrant, but a general cry that ‘Dina was back!’ just sorta erupted.

Seemingly all talkin’ as one, of course we wanted the low down on her investigation inta organic farmin’ in Peru. Took nearly an hour of some new introductions and general jabber before discussion with respect ta our general objectives was seriously restored.

“Dina. We’ve been gettin’ all sorts of reply ta our Eco Vig efforts. We’ve just received this manila 9x12 envelope from this Jane Heim, connected with “Spray Drift”: It’s just packed with good info. This is where I first started gettin’ tips on what’s up with unmarked or incorrectly registered spray planes. I can’t thank her enough fer a lot of this stuff, which havin’ her permission, I intended ta use.


Seems she’s not satisfied one bit by way this Warren Goetsch character, who’s the bureau chief fer environmental matters at Il. Dept. of Ag., has been handling numerous complaints from organic farmers and bee keepers, or maybe we should say not handlin’ ‘em.

Quotin’ directly from some of her literature.

“Why is it that you can get back to the victim within four weeks when you find “no violation,” but you keep some organic farmers waiting for an answer for…well…some are still waiting for an answer three months later and counting? Don’t you think that’s a little unfair?
And when these nice, dedicated small farmers and small landowners call you, you give them the following excuses”:

“We lost a chemist.”
“Our machine is broken down.”
“The instrument that is used to analyze the samples was down and just got repaired.”
“I will get back to you…I am so busy now with complaints…”
“It will be another week or so.”
“I see no dead bees around your hives.”
“You need a quart jar of dead bees to prove it.” 

She goes on to chastise him, further, harder, and makes accusation of him workin’ for State of Il. Dept. of big biz agriculture, somethin’ the vast majority of those I converse with don’t have a problem believin’, at all.

“Dina!” I blurt out. In depth investigation’s yer bag, ain’t it?”

“Well, yeah, I guess I could claim that,” I get as response.

Let me give ya some background on this Dina chick:

She was born in Russia like four years before Chernobyl, the nuclear reactor meltdown.

Her family, grandparents, her parents and her, were granted permission to flee the country, all landing in the U.S.

An environmental refuge, I guess that’s what you’d call her. It’s like she’s got K.G.B. in her genes, ya know what I mean. She just loves ta dig inta things.


“Dina, how’da like the job of scopin’ out this Goetsch character, tryin’ ta find out what makes him tick?”

“Do you mean me going to Springfield? Me checking him out close up. Seeing how and where he eats, where he hangs out and with whom, the whole nine yards?”

“Yeah. We might even send ya off with press credentials. Lead investigator fer the eco Vig.”

“Eh. Expenses?”

“Minimal, yeah. We all know that you know how ta live close ta the ground.”

“All right, give me a couple of days to rest up. party…and I’ll go off and see what I can come up with.”

Fast forward, like only a couple of weeks and we’re again gathered out here in the woods, hard spring comin’ on.

“Darn!” Kendra comes on, “Can you believe all the press the bee die off is getting. It’s all over the Internet. Bees, bees, like some sorta switch’s been turned on.”

“Yeah,” I come back. “From the number of articles Ruby May fished up with her computer, stuff that we’ve been sent by others…and did you see that it even hit prime time network news. Yeah…and they did a pretty good job of it too. They hit on ag. chemicals as a major probable cause, them stoppin’ just short of pinnin’ the tails on the asses.


In honey, tested in laboratories with the highest degree of suffocation, they’ve isolated like 150 (and countin’) ag. chemical agents.

Since the bees have to eat their honey to survive the winter, the bees don’t seem able to metabolize all that previously unencountered junk.

This also begs the question of what these traces of chemical agents do to us, when er if there is a tolerance level that us humans can’t handle. “Not to worry,” again we hear from chemical ag.
The hive collapse that is unfoldin’ all around us we’d best take seriously. Much agro business could collapse along with the bees. This is serious stuff, that’s why it’s capturing so much attention. If the bee disaster cannot be stopped, say the bees get, along with a whole mess of their cohorts, kicked into the cyclone swirl around the extinction bin, guess what! We won’t be all that far behind ‘em. Leading scientific thought has us, following ‘em by from four to ten years. Think about it….

“Yes! We definitely need bees!”