We’ve mentioned Colony Collapse Disorder – the official name for the disturbing trend of bee colonies failing around the world – a couple of times before, and it’s a syndrome troubling and mysterious enough to have baffled any number of scientists for a few years now. [image by rockymountainhigh]
Some research has suggested that “electrosmog” (a technophobic UK tabloid media term for the electromagnetic radiation emitted by modern technology) may be the culprit, but via Shaun C Green we find there is a far less widely reported (but far more plausible) explanation of what may be at least a partial cause of CCD – a commercial pesticide called Clothianidin.
Bayer Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer of Clothianidin, is understandably keen to play down the possibility of its product having such an effect on bee colonies. The substance – rebranded as “Poncho” – was passed for use by the US Environmental Protection Agency in 2003, but the Canadian Pest Management Regulatory Agency claims the studies submitted as evidence were seriously flawed, and the German government suspended registration of Clothianidin and similar chemicals in May of this year.
So – are bees being killed off by electrosmog or Clothianidin? Maybe it’s both, maybe it’s neither… but given the choice of the two, I know what Occam’s Razor is telling me, and it’s the answer that doesn’t make such a sensational headline.