Beekeepers in Mandurah. Urgent Alert

Has anybody else in or around Mandurah had dead bees around hive.
Yesterday, everything was fine ……today a few hundred dead bees around hive and within 2 metres.
Some that were alive looked disoriented.
I suspect somebody has been using poison.
Too miserable today to do a hive inspection but tomorrow will have a good look inside.
I’m gutted. Love my girls. :honeybee::honeybee:

Oh no Heather, how horrible!!! I hope you’ve reported this to local authorities - its possible that if it was poison/pesticide, there may have been improper use or procedure. Municipalities are supposed to notify residents of spraying schedules so they can secure livestock.

I’m so sorry :slightly_frowning_face:

I did a hive inspection this morning and no evidence of any infection or disease. Looks like it was pesticide poisoning either on plants or the strong easterly wind. Lost about 600 of my lovely girls. :disappointed:
I’ll call the Council tomorrow and woe betide them if they’ve used any nasties.

Horrified to find out today that our local council use Glyphosate. They had the gall to say it doesn’t affect bees. Yeh right, that’s why it’s being banned by the EU and numerous other countries.
I’m going to start waging a bit of a campaign against herbicide and pesticide use.
No bees means no pollination which means NO FOOD.
My bees are thriving once again but I want to protect them against further contamination.

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So glad your bees are recovering! Good luck with your campaign - I’m sure you’ll find lots of supporters in your area who will be just as determined to make change once they learn what happened.

Thanks for your support.
Where are you located and is spraying a problem where your hives are situated.

I’m in suburbs north of Philadelphia, PA USA. Spraying definitely happens here, by neighbors on a small scale and by the townships. A couple of years ago there was mass spraying of underbrush and trees lining most of the major roads around here, resulting in long stretches of browned vegetation. Cheap & lazy compared to sending out workers with machines. Many people complained including me, but I don’t know what the outcome was - whether they’ll revise the plans for next time or not. It takes a lot of commitment to attend meetings and keep the issue on the forefront. At least nowadays one can submit comments to officials online.

I’ve already reported this issue to our Department of Primary Industry (where we register our hives), I’ve written to the local city council and my local member of Federal Parliament. That’s a good start.

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Sorry for a late reply but I would also encourage you to contact the bee section of DPIRD. They have tracked some recurring seasonal deaths due to pesticides in a number of locations across the SW.

It is most likely a gardener and DPIRD may be able to offer some assistance in getting something in your local paper highlighting the issue.

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I spoke to the DPI yesterday and there have also been reports in Swan View and Dalkeith. I’m the only one in Mandurah whose reported an issue.
I can’t believe that the City of Mandurah still use Glyphosates around here.
I’ve written to them already and to my local Federal member,
I think all beekeeper should get a campaign going. It was SO upsetting to see my girls dying and in distress.
Fortunately my hive is recovering. So far so good.

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Good to hear you took those steps. There is another annual impact around Busselton too.

Look forward to hearing updates.

Please notify the Bunbury branch of the DPI. They need to keep records of outbreaks.

I chat to James regularly. I’m not associated with the report from Busselton but it has historically been made by the effected beekeepers and there are no current occurrences to the best of my knowledge.

Glyphosate’s are herbicides and do not kill insects if this is what you are implying. Keep in mind that there are some flowering plants that are toxic to bees also.
Usually it’s the backyard shed stock pesticides that are no longer available that are the culprits although I’m not sure which fruiting plants would need spraying this time of year.

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Something affected my poor girls. My description to the DPI indicated poisoning.
But perhaps you might like to have some advice on my next move.
If I’ve lost 10% of my hive, what is the best way to boost numbers before winter.

We’re fortunate here in Perth generally there’s forage through winter, your bees will likely be ok… It’s usually a good idea to remove the super and condense them down over winter. Also keep in mind that the summer bees are short lived and will soon be replaced by winter bees so I’m sure they’ll be fine. :slightly_smiling_face:

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In fairness to the council glyphosate is not banned in the EU because of any effects on bees. It’s being phased out because of general worries about its effect on humans. You are probably thinking of neonicotinoids which do have bad effects on bees, not sudden deaths but colony harming effects.

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I’ve decided to give them some 1/1 sugar syrup because haven’t seen much (or any) pollen coming into the hive.
Just want to give the girls a boost.
Also, patties on the way.

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Mass spraying of herbicides does kill bees and other insects. Anyone witnessing healthy vegetation going dead-brown in a matter of hours could reasonably suspect that whatever did that is probably harmful to any organism at some level. Monsanto, Bayer et al have danced around this by focusing on the ‘active ingredient’ glyphosate for testing,

To help my girls along in the meantime I’ve given them some 1/1 sugar syrup and they’re really lapping it up. Hope I’ve done the right thing. It’s been a traumatic week for us all :honeybee::honeybee: