It has taken many years, but the evidence has become incontrovertible, despite deliberate efforts to censor public understanding.
The Washington Post explains in McCoy, T. (2014, July). A Reason Millions of Bees are Dying. The Washington Post, http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/07/10/the-surprisingly-simple-reason-millions-of-bees-are-dying/
In the past several weeks, a spate of studies have appeared in scientific journals suggesting the culprit behind such deaths are widely-used pesticides called neonicotinoids.
And it’s not just bees that have been impacted, researchers say. A study published in Nature on Wednesday found bird populations in the Netherlands dropped more sharply in areas where neonicotinoid use was highest. “Our results suggest that the impact of neonicotinoids on the natural environment is even more substantial than has recently been reported and is reminiscent of the effects of persistent insecticides in the past,” the study said.
...Around 95 percent of the insecticide — first introduced in the 1990s and produced by firms such as Bayer and Syngenta – winds up in the wider environment, the Guardian reported.
...A Harvard study published in May significantly strengthened the link between neonicotiniods and colony collapse....[end]
The Post's story is worth reading in full.
It has taken years for the mainstream press to acknowledge the indisputable role of neonicotinoids.
On October 11, 2010 I wrote a blog post - Majia's Blog: Bias in Bee Study? - about bias in The New York Times coverage of a bee study that concluded parasites were to blame for colony collapse. The New York Times failed to mention that the lead author of the study described in their article received funding from the very chemical company responsible for producing the neonicotinoid pesticide, Bayer Crop Science.
(K. Eban first made that disclosure of the conflict of interest at Common Dreams
In 2010 I noted on my blog that Wikileaks released an EPA report documenting that the EPA KNEW the neonicotinoid pesticides held risks for bees and other animals:
(see also Majia's Blog: Bee Colony Collapse and Dangerous Pesticides ...)
In 2012, 1/3 of the domestic bee population failed to survive the winter:
Majia's Blog: Wired: "Controversy Deepens Over Pesticides and Bee ...
I suspected that bioaccumulation of radionuclides in pollen and honey might have increased the bees' susceptibility to collapse, especially because the bees in California were especially hit hard in 2013
Majia's Blog: Bee Colony Collapse in California Accelerates ...
There are still honeybees in Arizona. I love them but know to give them wide berth since they are mostly all Africanized.
However, it has been many years since I saw a bumblebee.
I hope there are enough bees left for species survival.
I wonder what those pesticides do to human embryos and fetuses?