Is what is happening to bees a proverbial "Canary in the coalmine" when it comes to warning us about the pesticides clothianidin and thiamethoxam? Photo courtesy of Center of Food Safety and taken by NY beekeeper Jim Doan.
Yesterday, the Center for Food Safety (CFS) filed a suit in behalf of a coalition of four beekeepers and five environmental and consumer groups against the Environmental Protections agency seeking the suspension of the use of pesticides clothianidin and thiamethoxam.
Late last month the American Bird Conservancy released a study titled The Impact of the Nation’s Most Widely Used Insecticides on Birds. That study issued dire warnings about EPA’s failures to assess threats to birds and to the aquatic ecosystems many species depend upon. The chemicals included in that study were clothianidin and thiamethoxam.
"Busy as a bee" is a familiar attribute and we owe a lot to the work billions of worker bees do in pollinating both food crops and wild plants such as flowers. While not native to North America the demise of the honeybee would create the loss of, or serious decline of many food crops that growers and farmers depend upon honeybees to cross pollinate.
Birds! It saddens the heart to imagine as The American Bird Conservancy claims that "As little as one kernel of corn shows that a single corn kernel coated with a neonicotinoid can kill a songbird"
If that claim is anywhere near true the number of birds that can and will succumb to a cruel and painful death by poison is staggering. Of course of paramount importance is the damage that these poisons may do and are doing to creatures large and small to the entire ecosystem.
It would seem that birds and bees are the proverbial "canary in the coal mine" when it comes to warning of the negative results of the use of the pesticides clothianidin and thiamethoxam. It is because of this warning of the potentially incredible negative impact on the environment and humans we should advocate for the birds and the bees. If we don't we may very well suffer similar consequences.