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Bee Death Linked to Residual Pesticides

written by: Summer Banks•edited by: Niki Fears•updated: 8/28/2009

Italy is not taking lightly to the deaths of millions of honeybees. At the heart of the deaths are chemical pesticides produced by the Bayer Corporation. Further bans are being called for worldwide.

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    Bayer and Pesticide Law

    A country wide ban has been placed on several chemical pesticides containing neonicotinoid. These pesticides include, but are not limited to, clothianidin, imidacloprid, fipronil and thiamethoxam. The ban comes after a massive death of millions of honeybees thought to be linked to residual chemicals left on the blooms of the plants sprayed with the pesticides.

    Honeybees are needed as a source of pollination in flower, fruits and vegetables. Without pollination, the flowers appearing on plants will not produce foods or seeds for further generations. The Bayer CropScience company produces the four most common pesticides used in Italy. The pesticides, clothianidin, imidacloprid, fipronil and thiamethoxam, were part of a series of studies completed by the Bayer Corporation. The studies claimed the residue left after spraying would be of no harm to the honeybees. After the deaths of millions of honeybees, the studies are thought to be flawed or tainted.

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    Noticing the Deaths

    The beekeepers were the ones who noticed the problems thanks to the deaths of millions of honeybees. The bees, rasied by beekeepers, commonly leave the hive and return back to the hive several times throughout the day. After consuming nectar from flowers sprayed with the pesticides, the bees returned to the hive and died along with all other bees in the hive.

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    Following France and Germany

    Italy is not the first country to impose a ban on substances containing neonicotinoid. France, Germany and Slovenia already have bans in place for several pesticides in the neonicotinoid family. France, Germany and Slovenia have banned all usage of the chemical imidacloprid and clothianidin.

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    Legal Support

    The chief council in the cases against Bayer is Harro Schultze of the Coalition Against Bayer Dangers. It was the coalition who first suggested Bayer tainted the studies on the effects of pesticide residue in order to keep the multimillion dollar product legal for usage on sweetcorn, sunflowers and rapeseed oil.