Saturday, March 20, 2010

BBKA backed the wrong horse - but will they admit it?

New research from China has shown that synthetic pyrethroids - the same chemicals that we have been told to use in our hives against Varroa for the last 30 years, and the same chemicals that the British Bee Keepers Association cheerfully endorse as 'bee friendly' - are in fact toxic to bees and it has now been shown that 'the hatch rate of pyrethroid-exposed eggs was significantly depressed'.

This immediately raises the questions: why was this research not done BEFORE we were told to use them in our hives. And if it was done, how were the manufacturers allowed to fudge and/or conceal the results for so long?

Is it because - in the words of Dr L R B Mann, who was for 12 years advisor on toxins to the New Zealand Ministry of Health, "the chemical industry is, as an historical tendency, a refuge for crooks"?

Link to article: Widely Used Pesticides Found to Impair Bee Reproduction

Link to article: High Levels of Miticides and Agrochemicals in North American Apiaries: Implications for Honey Bee Health


Anett said...

Dear Phil, this is Anett from Hungary. I apologise for contacting you here, but the contact page at does not seem to work (it keeps bouncing back with "incorrect image verification text"). I would like to translate your book - The Barefoot Beekeeper - into Hungarian. Can you please let me know how to proceed? Best regards,
P.S. I am a PhD student in Comparative Literature in English, we live in a farm where we practise permaculture and would love to keep bees according to your guidelines and serve as an example here.

Unknown said...

Dear Phil ,
Heard your interview on NPR .I love the path that you are taking in beekeeping. I currently have 7 pretty healthy hives of apis lugistica at undisclosed locations that I have had for about five years first time ever. Have never re-queened or given any medication. Have collected quite a bit or amazing honey(this not being primary objective) and they have definitely made a positive environmental impact to the area(this is definitely my primary objective),quite noticeable on local trees, floral, wild flower, wild bird and butterfly migration.resurgence of the "fading bumble bee" as a natural pollinator .I have also noticed the honeybees need to collect water clearing standing water the may have after awhile harbored mosquito larvae, which according to the local oh so clever authorities have deemed bring on west Nile virus. Speaking of West Nile, the local authorities decided to spray the area for west Nile via helicopters I tried best I could to tarp my hives but because and I had only two hours notice by dumb chance from a concerned associate. Being middle of August And most the ladies(bees) were outside festooning just minding their own business hanging out keeping cool they got sprayed!!The helicopters were relentless all night long. The whole island (Long Island New York) to be exact. I took shelter for that nite when morning came.., everything was different there were butterfly's and bumblebees dead or dieing everywhere definitely a toxic death. My hives... there were dead and neurotically damaged bees everywhere.Terrible my horror and sadness is still beyond words about this matter. What could they have been spraying like that to do this type of damage? And not notify residence to be given the option to not have their land trees and beings sprayed while we slept at night, thinking all is well. WAKE UP people! Well those hives, I have able to save from complete collapse at the moment, I don't know how after what they been through. Maybe luck love and devotion I give them. I've since relocated (most of them) to another area. ( That s a whole other story, Police and almost being arrested for possession of honey bees, silly people). Will at this point try the splits from these Langtrof hives in spring to make at least seven Top Bar Hives.I am requisitioning material from barn full of left over wood material. Will keep you posted on development and would love to network with you here in Catskill region and help to encourage legislation in Long Island Nassau county about legality of possession of honey bees hives currently not legal and full disclosure of county wide toxic spray programs. Phil let me know what I can do and what needs to be done.
Bee Side inc.
p.s. is this the best place to reach you?
my email

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