“If the bee disappeared off the face of the earth, man would only have four years left to live.”
– Maurice Maeterlinck, The Life of the Bee
Insecticides sprayed to kill mosquitoes in the southern United States have lead to millions of bees dying in the last few weeks.
Many beekeepers now fear for their livelihood.
The Reality Of Bees Dying
A beekeeper in Naples, Florida took the videos below on July 22 and 27, 2016, respectively. In the first, she was proud of how well her new hive was thriving and you can see the hundreds of little honey-makers flying around the opening. In the second, there is a pile of dead bees on the ground in front of the hive and flies hovering around it.
So what happened to her buzzing community?
On July 26, her municipality sprayed the area around her home with insecticide to kill mosquitoes and control the spread of the Zika virus. As an insecticide, the poison has been affecting much more than the mosquitoes.
Poison is Poison
A common chemical used to kill mosquitoes in the U.S. is Naled—a substance that has been banned in the European Union and elsewhere in the world. It makes sense that what’s toxic to one species will be toxic to others and naled is a prime example.
Just read this excerpt from a fact sheet on naled (a/k/a Bromex, Dibrom, Fly Killer-D, Lucanal, RE 4355) published by Cornell University: