Have bees become canaries in the coal mine?

Why Massive Bee Dieoffs May Be a Warning About Our Own Health, by Jill Richardson for AlterNet.

Tucked in the middle of the study is a bombshell: “The levels of clothianidin in bee-collected pollen [from treated maize] that we found are approximately 10-fold higher than reported from experiments conducted in canola grown from clothianidin-treated seed. This is significant because the pesticide clothianidin was deemed safe to bees by the EPA following a study of bees exposed to treated canola, a minor crop in the United States. However, according to the study, the pesticide dose bees are exposed to in the U.S. is usually ten times that, as corn (maize) covers more than 137,000 square miles in the U.S. — an area larger than the state of New Mexico. So even though bees aren’t pollinating corn directly, they still may be getting a toxic dose of pesticides from it. To beekeepers, the news is not terribly surprising. “

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