[Market-farming] Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD)

Brigette Leach avalonfarmshomegrown at earthlink.net
Sun Jun 3 22:47:54 EDT 2007

I have several friends who are not "pollinators" and are losing hives to 
Colony Collapse Disorder. Their bees work mostly on their own property 
with little to no exposure to chemicals or GMO crops.

Brigette Leach
Avalon Farms Homegrown

Alex McGregor wrote:

>Here's something a friend sent out on CCD.
>Alex McGregor
>Walden Farm
>Dear Friends,
>I'd like to comment on the information that is going around about the
>decline of the honeybee. By the way, this is not just happening here in the
>US, its worse in Germany and France.
>My husband has been a beekeeper for over 30 years. About 15 years ago, he
>went full time and we sale our organic/bio-dynamic honey to many businesses
>and families in the S.E. of Tennessee. 
>Eddie, my husband, attended a workshop in Tucson, Arizona about 4-5 years
>ago, to learn about a new method of beekeeping from 3rd generation
>beekeepers, Dee and Ed Lusby. This new method is something that 1250
>beekeepers have now incorporated in their practice. At the present, none of
>these 1250 beekeepers (my husband included) are experiencing collapsed hive
>disorder (CHD).
>Bee Story:
>In 1900, over 100 years ago, "they" decided to commercialize foundation.
>Foundation is the sheet of wax the beekeeper uses in the hive, so that the
>honeybee doesn't have to take the time to build it. It has a cell imprint
>on it. Its in this cell that the bees lay the larvae and store the honey.
>The bee that comes out of this cell is relative to the size of the cell.
>They decided that "bigger is better" and concluded that if they made the
>cell larger on the foundation, they could grow a bigger bee, that makes
>more honey, and makes more money for the beekeeper. 
>The normal cell size for the honeybee is 4.9mm; the cell that is imprinted
>on the most used foundation ranges anywhere from 5.2mm to 5.22mm. What
>happened in over 100 years of messing with this critical cell size is the
>creation of a honeybee that increased in size 20%, but its wings only
>increased 10%. During these 100 years, the honeybee's immunity has been
>weakened. The honeybee is being forced to tote more honey to feed the
>bigger bees, with wings that are unable to support this now modified big
>bee back and forth from the flower to the hive. Along with that, the
>honeybee has to deal with all the toxic chemicals the farmers are spraying
>on the crops, the pollution we are putting in the air, and also the
>antibiotics the beekeepers are using on the bees to kill the two kinds of
>The workshop that is being done by Dee Lusby (Ed has since died) teaches
>the beekeeper how to make his own foundation with wax produced from his
>bees, that doesn't have any residue of the chemicals that are being used on
>bees to fight the mites. YES, the antibiotics used on the hive for the two
>mites does leave residue of toxins in the honey, the wax, propolis,
>pollen...anything that comes from the harvest the honeybee produces. The
>government and chemical companies hid this from the public until Dee and Ed
>uncovered the files by accident (and good fortune) back in the 80s.
>Speaking to Dee recently, I asked her if she thought the cell towers/phones
>had anything to do with the demise of the bees. She assured me it was due
>to the state of the bee's immunity: due to being a bigger bee, the poisons
>that are being used on crops, GMO crops, and the antibiotics used on the
>bees to kill the mites.
>Through organic/bio-dynamic methods of using a mist of mineral oil in the
>hive, and reducing the size of the honeybee back to a little bee, our bees
>are thriving. Our honey is pure and organic; our wax is organic; propolis
>is organic, and above all, our bees are thriving. We started out with 5
>hives to get our bees to a little bee. After 4-5 years, we now have about
>70 of our hives down to the little bee. Eventually, we hope to change all
>of our bees to the little bee; but it will take time. We have between
>200-300 hives total. You have to take the cell size down a little at a
>time, vs. all at once. Since we were using 5.2mm cell size, we didn't have
>far to take them down to the smaller 4.9mm cell size.
>Now, let's address one thing that isn't being put out at all about CHD.
>Those that are experiencing CHD are mostly the "pollinators". There are
>many ways to make a living off the honeybee. One of the ways is to move
>them all over the country and use them to pollinate crops and orchards.
>That means the beekeeper transports the bees to wherever crops need to be
>pollinated. They don't care so much about producing honey. They just do
>whatever it takes to keep their bees alive so they can get anywhere from
>$70.00-$150.00 per hive to pollinate crops. This means that those
>pollinators are using every antibiotic the government and chemical
>companies are recommending on their honeybees. The mites build up a
>resistance to each one and a stronger more toxic antibiotic has to be used
>to kill the mites. The bees have to overcome all the major chemicals that
>are being used on their hives, crops and orchards; plus deal with the
>demoralization that moving the bees on tractor trailer trucks create, all
>add to the decline of its immunity.
>Are you beginning to see the picture? I can almost guarantee you that the
>beekeepers that are experiencing CHD are the pollinators. They have their
>bees on foundation that ranges from 5.9mm to on up to the largest. For them
>to even consider getting their bees back down to the little bee would be
>impossible. It is very difficult to get the queen and all the other workers
>and drones to accept this smaller cell size; but it is possible if you are
>patient and can make your own foundation. The only way the pollinator
>beekeepers can bring their bees back down to the little bee would for all
>of them to die out like Dee and Ed Lusby's did back in the 80s. They had
>around 1,000 hives originally. They lost all but 100 hives to the mites.
>They figured they didn't have anything to lose to start changing the method
>of how they kept their bees. Its paid off. Dee's bees are thriving, and the
>1250 beekeepers that have changed over to her new methods are thriving. The
>biggest threat to these beekeepers is the erratic weather patterns that the
>world is experiencing. A lot of folks don't realize that beekeepers are
>Dadant, one of the major bee supply companies, now offers a 4.9mm
>foundation. However, if a beekeeper uses this commercial foundation, he
>doesn't know what is in that wax, due to all the poisons that have been in
>practice for so many years. Its best to make your own foundation, using
>your own wax. To do this, one needs to buy a foundation mill. There use to
>be only one man making this mill and he resides in CA. We bought one and
>have been making our foundation for the last 4-5 years. Its very labor
>intensive. Its something you learn at Dee's workshop. Its something that is
>going to help us keep the honeybee from perishing. The really positive
>thing about CHD is that it has created an awareness that wasn't there
>before; and the demise of the honeybee is being talked about everywhere.
>If you want to do some reading on this, try going to www.beesourse.com
><javascript:ol('http://www.beesourse.com/;');>> . Read some of the
>articles, but especially those written by or about Dee and Ed Lusby. Also
>in ACRES USA recently, there was a good article by Gunther Hauk, a
>bio-dynamic beekeeper and advocate of Rudolf Steiner and his philosophy:
>try www.spikenardfarm.org <javascript:ol('http://www.spikenardfarm.org/');
><javascript:ol('http://www.spikenardfarm.org/;');>> , and/or
>www.pfeiffercenter.org <javascript:ol('http://www.pfeiffercenter.org/');
>Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts and opinions.
>Lou McKenzie
>Sale Creek Honey Co
>P.O. Box 32, Sale Creek, TN 37373
>May 2007 
>----- Original Message ----- 
>From: Marcy 
>To: Market Farming
>Sent: 06/01/2007 12:36:39 AM 
>Subject: Re: [Market-farming] Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD)
>Stay tuned for an upcoming article in Acres U.S.A. - www.acresusa.com
>on colony collapse disorder (not to be confused with another interesting
>article in the current May issue). It's an interview with Dr. George Carlo
>of the Safe Wireless Initiative - http://www.safewireless.org/  
>He makes a strong point - CCD is occurring simultaneously around the world.
>There is no spread pattern from a virus or mite. It's also occurring in the
>same time when the information carrying radio waves have saturated our
>atmosphere...well this link explains it better than I can.
>And watch for the Acres article!
>Market-farming mailing list
>Market-farming at lists.ibiblio.org
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