In the News
June 21, 2015
Plants For Bees
Here is a list of garden plants for bees that provide forage for at least one species of bee. Many of these plants will attract honey bees and different types of bumblebees and solitary bees.
Most people can accomodate at least a few of these flowers to attract bees and butterflies into their gardens, even if only in pots. Read more.
May 27, 2015
President Barack Obama has an exciting plan on the table with special meaning for Texas: Interstate Highway 35, known as IH-35 or I-35 in the Lone Star State, will be the focus of a national strategy to bring back honey bees, Monarch butterflies and other pollinators... read more.
As part of EPA's ongoing effort to protect pollinators, the Agency has sent letters to registrants of neonicotinoid pesticides with outdoor uses informing them that EPA will likely not be in a position to approve most applications for new uses of these chemicals until new bee data have been submitted and pollinator risk assessments are complete. The letters reiterate that the EPA has required new bee safety studies for its ongoing registration review process for the neonicotinoid pesticides, and that the Agency must complete its new pollinator risk assessments, which are based, in part, on the new data, before it will likely be able to make regulatory decisions on imidacloprid, clothianidin, thiamethoxam, and dinotefuran that would expand the current uses of these pesticides. Affected neonicotinoid actions include:
New Uses (including crop group expansion requests)
Addition of New Use Patterns, such as aerial application
Experimental Use Permits
New Special Local Needs Registrations
This is an interim position. However, if a significant new pest issue should arise that may be uniquely addressed by one of these chemicals, EPA is prepared to consider whether an emergency use under FIFRA section 18 might be appropriate. Due to the localized nature of many emergency pest management programs, it may be possible to develop mitigation or adjust the use pattern in a manner that would minimize exposure to bees. In the event that an emergency use is requested, the Agency plans to assess such requests by relying on available information and risk mitigation strategies. .
More information on EPA’s efforts to protect pollinators: http://www2.epa.gov/pollinator-protection
Saving the honey bees
Dr. Joe Bischoff, AmericanHort's director of regulatory and legislative affairs, says it is important that we are informed and prepared to talk about the issue of pesticides, pollinators and the overarching concerns of bee health in a calm and clear manner.
WGN tv segment in which member Chris Saad was interviewed.
The impact of systemic insecticides on bees and other pollinators is not a new phenomenon. Kansas State University Entomology Professor Raymond Cloyd says we, as an industry, need to work together to provide unbiased information that is based in sound science.
To demonstrate good environmental stewardship, growers need an understanding of the issues presenting risks to bees and of strategies to minimize the risks. Knowing where to find key product information and how to interpret it can help growers make sound choices regarding the application of effective products.
Specialty agriculture has an enormous role to play in improving pollinator health. Here is what growers can expect to see from government agencies and industry associations.
February 26, 2014
$3 Million for a New Program to Improve Pollinator Health, American Bee Journal
February 05, 2014
"Bee Deaths Reversal: As Evidence Points Away from Neonics As Driver, Pressure Builds to Rethink Ban", Forbes