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Re: E-M:/ E-M: Open Question on bee issue



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Enviro-Mich message from "Cynthia Price" <skyprice@gmail.com>
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Many people have asked that question, particularly Germans (and me!). An article I read by Gunter Lasch called Are GM Crops Killing Bees?, in Der Spiege,l pointed to research that showed Bt corn was fairly toxic to honeybees but in the presence of a certain parasite killed them in great numbers. One reason people started looking at that was because (can't remember if anyone has mentioned this on E-M yet) the other bees won't go near the abandoned hives, as they normally would. So their logic goes that some kind of toxin would be involved.

I'd be happy to send that article to anyone who wants it.

A member of one of our community gardens committee and I have been sharing info, and she (Rachel Frith, with the Kent County Green Party) e-mailed back and forth with Huang, the MSU expert. He is currently in DC at an emergency conference specifically dedicated to Colony Collapse Disorder, but he did answer back that the only cause they've ruled out definitively is cell phones. On the other hand he said it didn't appear that it was due to several other causes (which he listed), including the usual suspects such as mites, and that list included GM plants -- but they weren't ruling any of them out completely yet.

By the way, in answer to Rachel's question about whether it was found in Michigan, Huang basically answered that it was in theory but he had been looking for someone who noticed it and hadn't talked to anyone. Do Enviro-Mich people want to let him know what they've observed? Any apiarists out there?

Cynthia Price
Greater Grand Rapids Food Systems Council

On 4/24/07, Chuck Cubbage <charles.cubbage@comcast.net> wrote:
E-Mers,
I have not seen the question raised yet but:
Homo sapiens has added genetic insecticidal info into a variety of crops. It has been noted that lacewings (neuropterans) disappear from areas
adjacent to GMO soybean acreage. It may be a longshot, but has anyone asked
the question " Could we be experiencing the same thing with bees? GMO Bt is
now in corn and other crops. Some dipteran species (mosquitoes, etc.) are
sensitive. Might hymenopterans also have some sensitivity?
To my academic friends, don't dismiss this question unless you can provide
peer review statistics, please. Regards,
Chuck

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