Where ever you live in the world you should apply the information on working your bees that is given below when the weather conditions in your area are right. So take notes and be ready.

*****Check out the new easy to use book link above*****

Cletus Notes

Hello Everyone,

Here at Lone Star Farms in Bryan, Texas, January is the month I repair broken hive parts that I have set aside during the past year. I clean up any hive parts from dead-outs, and I spread a good coat of paint on those exterior hive parts to get them ready for the up-coming season.

January is also the month that I take inventory of all my hives, extra hive parts, and make a plan for what I want to accomplish with my bees during the coming season. Then, I am able to look at what I have on hand, and decide if I need to order anything before the season begins. If I do need something, I usually place that order in January.  It is never good when you get into the busy season and discover that you don’t have what you need. Planning ahead is key to being successful in beekeeping. If you don’t make a plan, you will always be one step behind.

Enjoy your bees!

Dennis Brown   

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Cost of Pollination
 

Cost Per Colony to Pollinate Almonds Up 1 Percent from Previous Year

 

In Region 6 & 7, the average cost per colony for almonds increased 1 percent

from 165 dollars per colony to 167 dollars per colony in 2016. The average

price per acre, however, decreased from 313 dollars per acre to 287 dollars

per acre during that period. The total value of pollination for almonds

decreased 3 percent due to less colonies used on almonds in 2016. Almonds

were the highest valued crop in that region. The total value of all

pollination in Region 6 & 7 for 2016 was 309 million dollars, up slightly

from last year.

 

Blueberries had the highest total value of pollination of crops reported in

Region 1 during in 2016. The price per colony for blueberries decreased 7

percent to 88.2 dollars per colony in 2016. The price per acre decreased 12

percent to 147 dollars per acre. The total value of pollination for

blueberries in Region 1 for 2016 was 5.73 million dollars. The total value

for pollination of all crops in Region 1 for 2016 was 18.5 million dollars,

down 2 percent from a year ago.

 

Blueberries had the highest total value of pollination of crops reported in

Region 2 during in 2016. The price per colony for blueberries increased 6

percent to 53.7 dollars per colony in 2016. The price per acre increased 6

percent to 81.8 dollars per acre. The total value of pollination for

blueberries in Region 2 for 2016 was 1.77 million dollars. The total value of

pollination of all crops in Region 2 for 2016 was 5.12 million dollars, down

2 percent from previous year.

 

Watermelons had the highest total value of pollination of crops reported in

Region 3 during in 2016. The price per colony for watermelons decreased 3

percent to 58.7 dollars per colony in 2016. The price per acre increased 23

percent to 59.5 dollars per acre. The total value of pollination for

watermelons in Region 3 for 2016 was 1.82 million dollars. The total value of

pollination of all crops in Region 3 for 2016 was 4.71 million dollars, down

13 percent from last year.

 

Pumpkins had the highest total value of pollination of crops reported in

Region 4 during in 2016. The price per colony for pumpkins was 80.3 dollars

per colony in 2016. The price per acre was 26.7 dollars per acre. Pumpkin

estimates for 2015 were not published, so no comparison can be made with the

previous year. The total value of pollination for pumpkins in Region 4 for

2016 was 2.01 thousand dollars. The total value of pollination of all crops

in Region 4 for 2016 was 2.51 million dollars, up 30 percent form a year ago.

 

Apples had the highest total value of pollination of crops reported in Region

5 during in 2016. The price per colony for apples decreased 2 percent to 51.5

dollars per colony in 2016. The price per acre increased 5 percent to 47.6

dollars per acre. The total value of pollination for apples in Region 5 for

2016 was 5.41 million dollars. The total value of pollination of all crops in

Region 5 for 2016 was 14.7 million dollars, up 7 percent from previous year.

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Synergistic Effects of Pesticides Adversely Affect Pollinators


by Michele Colopy
Pollinator Stewardship Council, Inc.

The Pollinator Stewardship Council has expressed concern about the increased toxicity and harm to pollinators from the mixture of chemicals contained in pesticide products and co-applied in the environment. On Dec. 21, 2016 we sent a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, and the Director of the EPA Office of Pesticide Programs, Jack Housenger, to comply with federal law and enact label language which will protect pollinators. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has a duty to ensure that the use of these chemical concoctions will not unreasonably adversely affect humans or the environment. Yet the EPA consistently approves new uses and new products without adequate information to reach any reasoned conclusions.

We ask that the EPA require all information from applicants concerning mixture and co-application of ingredients before reaching any decisions to allow new, additional or continued uses of these chemicals. And, we ask that the EPA use this information to implement strict prohibitions and mitigations necessary to avoid the negative consequences on pollinators, our water, land, and wildlife; or if those consequences cannot be sufficiently mitigated, to deny these applications. In aid of this, we ask the EPA to recommit to a transparent process in which, to the greatest degree possible, the EPA provides information to the public, whether through notice of actions, publication of information (including studies and data) in the dockets, or timely responses to requests under the Freedom of Information Act.

The bottom line is whether the application of multiple ingredients can have a synergistic effect for certain combinations of pesticides. Without expressly requiring applicants to provide information on synergy, it is highly likely that the EPA is underestimating the negative impacts on the environment of pesticide exposure in its analyses. EPA cannot comply with its duty under the Federal Insecticide Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) to ensure that its registration of pesticides will not result in unreasonable adverse effects on the environment.
[1]Time is of the essence as the EPA continues to approve more uses of mixtures, like the new approval of the combination of dicamba and glyphosate for use on genetically-engineered crops.

In addition to products that contain either multiple active or inert ingredients that result in synergism, pesticide products can often be mixed or co-applied in the field in a way that results in synergistic effects. For example, in the recent pollinator risk assessment for Imidacloprid, the EPA noted that this pesticide was often mixed with fungicides in tank mixtures.[2]In the risk assessment, the EPA stated:

“fungicides, particularly those of the sterol biosynthesis inhibitor class that include the triazole fungicides were detected with high frequency. There are reports in the literature that these chemicals may exhibit a greater than additive (e.g., synergistic) effect on toxicity when bees are exposed simultaneously with neonicotinoid chemicals like imidacloprid. While the extent of this relationship is beyond the scope of this assessment, it highlights the complex nature of interactions of different stressors that exist in the hive.[3]

These mixtures have real impacts on pollinators that the EPA must take into account and act upon when it makes pesticide registration decisions.

To aid in making informed decisions, the EPA must engage in a transparent process. Instead, the registration process does not afford the public a meaningful opportunity to participate because few, sometimes none, of the underlying studies or data are provided in the docket on Regulations.gov. We ask that the EPA engage the public, especially beekeepers, while it is making these decisions as fully as it is attending to the applicants. We have a real stake in these decisions, and need to have a mechanism for providing input to EPA.

Many pesticide products on the market are likely more harmful than the EPA has previously assumed because some of the most common combinations of ingredients cause synergistic effects, and most pesticide product labels do not meaningfully limit tank mixtures or co-application. Therefore, it is imperative that the EPA consider synergistic effects of pesticide products during its registration and registration review process, and include protective label restrictions to eliminate or mitigate adverse, synergistic environmental impacts. The EPA should prohibit tank mixes on the labels unless there is sufficient information demonstrating that no synergistic effects will occur. For example, pesticides such as the sterol biosynthesis-inhibiting fungicides known to disable the insect detoxification system, the EPA should prohibit applications to blooming crops. During the risk assessment risk mitigation process, the EPA should candidly engage with all of the stakeholders affected, including beekeepers.

For more information about the Pollinator Stewardship Council, and its efforts to defend managed and native pollinators from the adverse impact of pesticides visit
www.pollinatorstewardship.org.