Disappearing bumble bee species under threat of extinction

Image of American bumble bee on flower.

(York University) “This species is at risk of extinction and it’s currently not protected in any way despite the drastic decline.” The research team used data from three sources: citizen science data from Bumble Bee Watch, the Bumble Bees of North America database with records dating back to the late-1800s, and their own field work.

An unlikely feud between beekeepers and Mennonites simmers in Mexico

Image of beekeepers with hives in jungle.

(National Geographic) Since the 1930s, Maya beekeepers have made the Yucatán into a world-class honey producer. But the rapidly expanding presence of Old Colony Mennonites, who are transforming large swathes of land into agricultural fields, could change that. Beekeepers say that the large-scale agriculture and the genetically modified soy planted by the Mennonites is killing their hives and contaminating the supply of honey with pesticides. In 2012, the beekeepers sued the government and won—resulting in a supreme court ban on transgenic soybeans four years ago. But on the ground, little has changed.

Sivanto pesticide cocktail can harm honey bees

Image of honey bee on purple flower.

(University of California – San Diego) Recent research shows that worst-case, field-realistic doses of Sivanto, in combination with a common fungicide, can synergistically harm honey bee behavior and survival. “The idea that this pesticide is a silver bullet in the sense that it will kill all the bad things but preserve the good things is very alluring but deserves caution.”