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  • Minnesota for the bees! | Honey Bee Haven
    pesticide kills and give beekeepers access to financial compensation if pesticides are the confirmed culprit With bee harming pesticides still on the market a bill like this can help mitigate their harmful impacts for beekeeper livelihoods As many commercial beekeepers say what other industry could take a 40 loss every year and be expected to stay in business The money to compensate beekeepers for pesticide kills will be drawn from the Minnesota s pesticide regulatory account funded by pesticide product registration fees paid by corporations every year Language from these bills was incorporated into an omnibus appropriations bill HF 3172 which is currently in conference committee Agency action On their own Minnesota s two bee bills would set the state apart in efforts to protect pollinators But state agencies have also taken up the charge in part prompted by last year s pollinator habitat bill The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Department of Natural Resources and Department of Transportation are all looking for ways to increase pollinator habitat And when it comes to protecting bees from pesticides it all comes down to the Minnesota Department of Agriculture MDA MDA is responsible for regulating pesticides throughout the state And although they don t often take advantage of it MDA has the authority to institute pesticide policies that are more protective than those set at the federal level The agency is currently conducting a special review of neonicotinoids at the request of the state legislature which could lead to more bee protective policies The comment period for MDA s neonic review concluded last Friday People and organizations across the state submitted comments encouraging the agency to take the threat of neonicotinoids seriously and limit their use In the comments that PAN submitted to MDA we urged the MDA to consider the growing body of evidence that neonicotinoid seed treatments do not increase yield when used on Minnesota s top crops like corn soy wheat dry beans and canola We called on MDA to close the loophole that exempts seed treatments from being tracked along with other pesticide sales And above all we encouraged MDA to consider policy options that would reduce the use of neonicotinoids and replace them with alternatives that are safe and effective We weren t the only ones nudging MDA to go farther in its review Seventeen legislators including pollinator champions like Jean Wagenius and Jim Davnie signed on to comments authored by Rep Rick Hansen who chastised the agency for failing to consider an obvious policy option de registering neonicotinoids The legislators comments read in part The legislature did not intend that the Department would simply rubber stamp USEPA s registration decision for fear of being redundant This implicit interpretation of the law is nonsensical and more troubling at odds with legislative intent What exactly is the purpose of this special registration review if not to review and evaluate the Department s registration decision in light of the latest evidence on insect pollinator impacts These are exactly the kinds

    Original URL path: http://www.honeybeehaven.org/content/minnesota-bees (2016-02-12)
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  • Bee aware | Honey Bee Haven
    seven hives only three survived the winter and they are very healthy with queens imported from Australia where they do not have a varoa mite infestation We use no chemicals on our bees Two days ago a big tanker truck pulled up next to our property Our next door neighbor had called in an arborist to have her spray all his Japanese maple trees for caterpillers we ve never had a caterpillar infestation however according to organic principles we apply tanglefoot at the base of our trees and spray with lime sulphur I m going to try some Top Bar Hives and see how they do When I asked the technician what kind of spray she was about to apply on the other side of our fence she said it was Success It s organic she said but added Well the carrier is not Suspicious I looked up this Success chemical online and found that indeed it is a pesticide that is hazardous to bees And the cautionary label reads Do not use around foraging bees How do you tell foraging bees not to fly when people are spraying We requested the pesticide person to come back the next day after we would put a temporary block on our hives to prevent our honey bees from getting sprayed However what about the bumblebees mason bees and pollinating birds that get Success ed These are the situations that beekeepers and gardeners are faced with in both urban and rural settings and it s not of our choosing There ought to be a law right I love my bees whom I address daily Hi Girls Howya doing Bees are very sensitive to people s vibrations and intentions I ve only been stung twice in four years and that was when bees had

    Original URL path: http://www.honeybeehaven.org/content/bee-aware (2016-02-12)
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