Water is the Connection; The Bee Corp; Natural Yellow jacket control, and more

Pollinator News                 Oct. 27, 2017

Water is the Connection: Managing Pesticide Risk for Salmon Recovery

(from Northwest  Center for Alternatives to Pesticides)

Water – abundant, pure and cool – is of vital significance in western Oregon. A dense network of streams and rivers fed by snow and rainwater filtered through mountain forest soils supply millions of Oregon residents with drinking water, power an economically robust agricultural economy, and are home to the state’s most iconic fish – salmon and steelhead.

Clean and cold water is increasingly scarce in the Willamette Basin. Nearly half of the Basin’s stream and river miles are currently considered to be severely biologically impaired. Toxic contamination, along with warm temperatures, sedimentation and low, dissolved oxygen levels is a problem in the Willamette River and its tributaries. Pesticides – which include insecticides, herbicides, fungicides, soil fumigants, and repellents – are the most commonly detected chemicals in the Basin.

More than a dozen of those pesticides have been determined to jeopardize the continued existence of salmon and steelhead. Minimizing the need for pesticides is important for growers, not just for salmon and steelhead. Routine use of pesticides can result in pest resistance. Pesticides are costly. And when pesticides wipe out beneficial organisms in addition to the target pest, secondary pest outbreaks may occur.

Alternative approaches to managing pests are available. In addition, simple actions – like planting trees on the perimeters of agricultural fields or learning to minimize drift – can have a powerful impact on water quality. This publication is designed to help pesticide applicators, especially in agriculture, learn about salmon in the Willamette Basin and the pesticides that are harmful to salmon or their food sources. Pesticide label language that indicates potential for aquatic contamination is explained. Voluntary Best Management Practices (BMPs) to minimize pesticide risk to aquatic habitats are included. Pesticide applicators can choose among these BMPs to reduce the risk of harming salmon. 

Information is highlighted for the Clackamas, Molalla-Pudding and Yamhill sub-basins, each part of the State of Oregon’s Pesticide Stewardship Partnership (PSP) Program. Oregon’s PSP works in selected Oregon watersheds, encouraging voluntary pesticide reduction with the goal of protecting water quality for aquatic life and human health.
Read the complete document and review FACT SHEETS for: Bifenthrin, Chlorpyrifos, Diazinon, Imdacloprid, Methomyl, Atrazine, Diuron, Oxyfluorfen at http://www.pesticide.org/water_is_the_connection



Technology Supporting Bee Health: The Bee Corp

Who is The Bee Corp
Founded in 2016 by three Indiana University students, The Bee Corp is a startup company helping beekeepers reduce annual losses through sensor monitoring and data analytics.

Founders Ellie Symes, Simon Kuntz and Wyatt Wells, who        established the Beekeeping Club at IU in 2014, came up with the idea behind the company after struggling to create lesson plans for club meetings. They wanted to teach club members about beekeeping basics, but it seemed like the more they researched each topic, the more conflicting information they found.

They compare teaching a new beekeeper to teaching a child to ride a bike; it’s very difficult to explain exactly what needs to be done because so much of it relies on feel and experience. The issue isn’t that beekeepers are poor teachers, it’s that many beekeeping decisions are based on what’s worked in the past. That’s just not something that can be taught.

Their solution: use data analytics to give beekeepers more information about cause and effect of hive management decisions to help them gain a better understanding of what worked, and why.

With this vision in mind, The Bee Corp offers a software platform powered by insights from hive data that’s collected and analyzed in real-time. The company ultimately plans to develop a suite of risk-detection and decision-support hive monitoring solutions that help beekeepers overcome the challenges of growing their hive numbers efficiently.

Queen’s Guard
The company rolled out the first of its monitoring solutions in February. Called Queen’s Guard, this solution tracks queen laying activity and alerts users as soon as a colony becomes queenless. In its first season, Queen’s Guard accurately identified 8 queenless hives and alerted users before they were able to notice signs of queenlessness. All 8 colonies are now going into winter at full strength because of the timely alert Queen’s Guard delivered to the beekeeper.

The Bee Corp team has found it incredibly rewarding that Queen’s Guard, in its first season, has already started helping beekeepers prevent losses. The company’s mission is to help beekeepers reduce hive loss through technology, and the founders are extremely proud that the product they released has made positive progress towards this end.

But this is only a humble beginning. The truly challenging work picks back up next spring, as the company has set high expectations for Queen’s Guard. With a full season of hive data under its belt, the algorithm behind Queen’s Guard can be tuned more precisely by the company’s data scientists to create a more powerful, accurate and valuable solution for beekeepers.

Feedback from Queen’s Guard users this season has been an essential part of helping to shape the service into a valuable product year-round. Thanks to the help of user experimentation and feedback from several outstanding customers, Queen’s Guard has the capability to help users: prevent swarming and improve split success rate during spring, maximize honey production during summer nectar flows, and build up population strength in weaker colonies before going into the winter.

In 2018, The Bee Corp team is eager to hear feedback from more beekeepers who will play a major role in influencing future growth of the Queen’s Guard platform.

Future products
As for what’s in store beyond 2018, The Bee Corp will turn to its own hives for help. The company operates 75 hives for research and development purposes, to discover patterns in hive data that can become the foundation for new solutions in addition to Queen’s Guard. These R&D hives are hooked up head to toe with a wide variety of experimental sensors. The Bee Corp’s data scientists examine this data and attempt to correlate distinctive patterns with actual activity in the hive.

The Bee Corp & B-Corps
The team went with the name “The Bee Corp” because the company is registered as a Benefit Corporation (or, B-Corp). A benefit corporation is a relatively new type of business entity that’s dedicated to creating a positive impact on society at large. As part of their commitment to pursue a higher level of purpose, accountability and transparency, benefit corporations are required to publish an annual report that outlines the organization’s efforts towards creating a positive social impact.

The two socially beneficial goals that guide decisions at The Bee Corp include supporting beekeepers and safeguarding food security. These targets serve as a friendly reminder to employees at The Bee Corp that they’re working towards meaningful goals that have an important impact on human lives.

To contact The Bee Corp, email info@thebeecorp.com, or call (614) 440.8060.


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Natural Yellow jacket Control Methods Part 1: Safety and Seasonality

From the Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides (NCAP) Blog

This guest post was written by NCAP supporter Aaron Walton. Aaron shares tips from his experience managing yellow jackets on his 2.5 acre property near Eugene, Oregon.

(Demonstrating the size difference between the smaller worker and the large queen. Notice she lacks a stinger, possessing an egg-laying ovipositer instead.)

This article is written primarily about ground-nesting yellow jackets as they occur in western Oregon. While these techniques can be relevant to yellow jackets in other areas, it is important to consider your location before attempting to destroy a nest. In warm climates, yellow jacket nests may not die out in the winter, and the nests can grow to be very large with tens of thousands of yellow jackets. These large nests should not be disturbed, and professionals should be called if removal is necessary.
Part 1- http://www.pesticide.org/natural_yellowjacket_control_part_1
Part 2-  http://www.pesticide.org/natural_yellowjacket_control_part_2






Assessment of acute sublethal effects of clothianidin on motor function of honeybee workers using video-tracking analysis, Abdulrahim T. Alkassab⁎, Wolfgang H. Kirchner, Ruhr University Bochum, Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology, Universitätsstrasse 150, D-44801 Bochum, Germany

Sublethal impacts of pesticides on the locomotor activity might occur to different degrees and could escape visual observation. Therefore, our objective is the utilization of video-tracking to quantify how the acute oral exposure to different doses (0.1–2 ng/bee) of the neonicotinoid “clothianidin” influences the locomotor activity of honeybees in a time course experiment. The total distance moved, resting time as well as the duration and frequency of bouts of laying upside down are measured. Our results show that bees exposed to acute sublethal doses of clothianidin exhibit a significant increase in the total distance moved after 30 and 60 min of the treatment at the highest dose (2 ng/bee). Nevertheless, a reduction of the total distance is observed at this dose 90 min post-treatment compared to the distance of the same group after 30 min, where the treated bees show an arched abdomen and start to lose their postural control. The treated bees with 1 ng clothianidin show a significant increase in total distance moved over the experimental period. Moreover, a reduction in the resting time and increase of the duration and frequency of bouts of laying upside down at these doses are found. Furthermore, significant effects on the tested parameters are observed at the dose (0.5 ng/bee) first at 60 min post-treatment compared to untreated bees. The lowest dose (0.1 ng/bee) has non-significant effects on the motor activity of honeybees compared to untreated bees over the experimental period.

In conclusion, our results strongly suggest that the usage of a video tracking method is an accurate method to investigate sublethal effects of pesticides and measure any locomotive changes in honeybees. Moreover, since the acute sublethal impacts of the clothianidin on the motor functions of honey bees have not previously been investigated, the results presented here provide the first detailed information in that regard. Nevertheless, it would be useful for future studiestoinvestigatethechronicsublethaleffectsthroughoutlong-term exposure, since the exposure time could have a key role in the toxicity profile of the pesticides (Feltham et al., 2014; Alkassab and Kirchner, 2016; Arce et al., 2016). Moreover, a comparative study of sublethal effects of pesticides and the sensitivity of other bee species such as bumblebees and solitary bees should be conducted. Additionally, more information about the distribution of neonicotinoid-sensitive receptors in motoneurons and neuromuscular junctions is required.

READ THE ARTICLE AT  http://pollinatorstewardship.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/Alkassab-and-Kirchner-2018_Assessment-of-acute-sublethal-effects-of-clothianidin-on-motor-function-of-honeybee-workers-using-vide-tracking_EcotoxEnvSafety-1.pdf


We are here for our members.  Join us, collaborate with us,
together we will make a difference!

become a mbr march 3

Become a member online today !


For financial information about this nonprofit see our Annual IRS 990 filing on our website (Home page/About Us/ Annual Report)  


 Annual 2018 Convention & Trade Show

The AHPA 49th annual convention will be January 9-13, 2018 at the DoubleTree by Hilton San Diego Mission Valley, California.

Our trade show is one of the largest beekeeping trade shows in the country and it’s a highlight for the convention attendees to come and meet new companies and see new products.

We will have conference sessions on new research and hot topics within the beekeeping industry such as legislative changes, new science information, honey trade & adulteration issues, and honey market & pollination reports. Our key note speaker is Dr. Michael Roberts, Executive Director of the Resnick Program for Food Law and Policy.

The group activity this year will be a Fiesta in Old Town San Diego! Don’t miss out on the fun!

Convention & Trade Show information and registration can be found on www.ahpanet.com


American Beekeeping Federation 2018 Conference and Trade Show

Celebrate the 75th Diamond Anniversary of the ABF at the 2018 American Beekeeping Federation Conference & Tradeshow, January 9-13, at the Grand Sierra Resort in Reno, Nevada. Discover the many facets of the ABF with four days of spectacular educational sessions, networking and fun.
-Hear from experts, trendsetters & influencers.
-Learn best practices.
-Shop a tradeshow full of the latest beekeeping innovations.
-Showcase your skills in the 2018 Honey Show.
-Have next-generation fun at the Kids and Bees program.
-Network with 900+ fellow beekeepers
75-YEARS STRONG! Make your plans today to join us in Reno for a brilliant conference and a celebration of the association’s 75 years of accomplishments.  More information go to http://abfconference.com/


Seeds for honey bees EAST of the Mississippi!

OPN pic for PSc websitePlant pollinator forage for your bees. Pollinator Stewardship Council has partnered with Ohio Prairie Nursery in support of pollinator habitat.  You can get native seeds for the eastern U.S. planting zones here.  Select “Support our Cause”  to view featured seed selections to benefit pollinators.  A portion of sales generated from our website will help support our work.


Seeds for honey bees WEST of the MississippiBBB Seed Plant for Pollinators Proj logo

To increase plant biodiversity, improve gardens yields, and make a positive difference for the future, plant for pollinators WEST of the Mississippi with bbbseed.  Go to their website, today and Plant For Pollinators!


Betterbee Has Seeds for Pollinator Habitat betterbee logo

Betterbee was at the Massachusetts Beekeepers Assn. Spring Meeting offering a variety of seed mixes for beekeepers to plant.   You can find seven seed mix varieties at their website

Planting forage for our bees is important; and beekeepers can lead by example!


Pollinator Stewardship Council
1624 Idlewood Ave., Akron, OH 44313
832-727-9492              www.pollinatorstewardship.org


We are member supported!  The Pollinator Stewardship Council is a nonprofit organization; donations are tax deductible.

View our 2016 Annual Report here

Beekeepers Working for Beekeepers

The Board and Program Director are all beekeepers.   
We work to:

•    Raise awareness about the adverse impact of pesticides on pollinators critical to the supply of food and the ecosystem.

•    Provide advocacy, guidance, and tools to document the detrimental effect of pesticides on pollinators.

•    Affect regulatory processes of pesticide risk assessment, label, and enforcement.