One not-so-small step to squash colony collapse disorder: France has announced that it may ban Syngenta's Cruiser OSR insecticide, one in a class of pesticides increasingly linked to contributing to CCD, for use on rapeseed crops (Reuters).
Following confirmation of independent research showing neonicotinoid pesticides can hurt bee colonies by the National Agency for Food, Safety and the Environment, France has given Syngenta two weeks to prove their pesticide isn't killing bees.
Syngenta, predictably, denies any connection between their products and bee declines, but as Mongabay sums up:
Despite Sygenta's statements, studies continue to appear that find a link between neonicotinoid pesticides and Colony Collapse Disorder. Recently, researchers in the U.S. fed tiny doses of neonicotinoid pesticide-laced high-fructose corn syrup, which is commonly used to feed bees, to 16 hives in the field and left four hives untreated. For months all the hives remained healthy, but after around six months over 90 percent (15 out of 16) of the hives fed with the pesticidal corn syrup had collapsed, while the four control hives remained healthy.
"There is no question that neonicotinoids put a huge stress on the survival of honey bees in the environment," lead author Chensheng (Alex) Lu, an associate professor at the HSPH, told mongabay.com.
Under the proposed ban, versions of the pesticide used on maize crops, will still be permitted.