OTTAWA – A holistic view of the challenges facing bee populations in a region of southern Ontario is required to protect honey bees.
Despite wide-spread international agreement that bee health is impacted by a combination of factors, the Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) continues to focus exclusively on the role of neonicotinoid pesticides in one specific Canadian region. Canada’s plant science industry is calling on the Canadian government to broaden its examination of the issue to ensure other problems facing pollinators – and the experience of beekeepers in other parts of the country – are not overlooked as solutions to this important, but complex, situation are sought.
For example, around the world beekeepers identify the Varroa mite as the primary threat to honeybee health. Additionally, a number of the hive health challenges described in the PMRA interim report are consistent with symptoms of known honey bee diseases.
Several relevant facts frequently disregarded in the on-going investigation into what has harmed bees in southern Ontario and parts of Quebec, include:
Following 2012 reports of incidents, the plant science industry took steps to provide additional protection for bees from exposure to pesticides. These steps include:
Research into the various challenges threatening pollinator health is absolutely necessary and Canada’s plant science industry is committed to continuing to initiate and support research on this important topic; however, we expect government will ensure their work is broad enough to ensure that all potential threats to honey bees are fairly and thoroughly examined and based on scientific, evidence-based data.
For more information contact:
613-230-9881 ext. 3223