50,000 dead bees, What next?

Fritillary on Bee Balm

Fritillary on Bee Balm

The following information is from a press release by the Xerces Society.The Xerces Society is committed to protecting our pollinators and their environment.

After a tragic killing of 50,000 bees at a Target parking lot in Oregon caused by the pesticide neonicotinoid, The Xerces Society recommendations include:

 

For municipalities

  • Municipalities should stop using all neonicotinoid insecticides on city and county-owned property, including schools, parks and gardens.
  • City and county governments should require that warnings be posted alongside displays of these chemicals at hardware stores and nurseries.
  • Legislators, regulators, and municipal leaders across the country should ban the use of neonicotinoids and other insecticides for cosmetic purposes on ornamental and landscape plants, like the ban now in force in Ontario, Canada

For homeowners

  • Do not buy products that contain neonicotinoids. A list of products can be found at www.xerces.org/pesticides
  • Check to see if you have these products in your garage or garden shed. If so, do not use them. Make sure you dispose of them properly or take them back to the store where you bought them.
  • When buying plants for your yard, ask if neonicotinoids have been used on them. If staff cannot tell you, shop somewhere else.

For nursery and hardware stores

  • Stores should proactively take action by pulling these toxic and poorly labeled products from their shelves.
  • At a minimum, display materials should be placed at point of sale so that consumers know that these products kill bees and other beneficial insects, and that they can cause plants to produce toxic nectar and pollen months after treatment.
  • Nurseries should list plants that have been treated with these chemicals.

For the federal government

  • The EPA should work with pesticide companies to add clear warnings to homeowner and ornamental neonicotinoid insecticides that are toxic to bees and other pollinators.

For insecticide companies

  • Companies that make homeowner pesticide products that contain neonicotinoids should add clear language to product labels highlighting that these products are highly toxic to bees and other pollinators, and that treatment to plants may result in nectar and pollen that are contaminated with the insecticide and may kill bees and other pollinators.
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