Zika spraying could be killing bees - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Zika spraying could be killing bees

Colony collapse disorder can turn a healthy colony like this into a completely dead one in less than a day. (Source: WMBF News) Colony collapse disorder can turn a healthy colony like this into a completely dead one in less than a day. (Source: WMBF News)

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - After Hermine came through the Carolinas, there has been a significant amount of flooding and standing water. 

Standing water could be dangerous along the Grand Strand, especially in light of the travel-related case of the Zika virus that was recently confirmed.

And while standing water could pose a threat, it may not be as dangerous as the effect spraying for mosquitoes could have.

Last Sunday, a number of beekeepers lost dozens of bee hives and millions of bees in Summerville, S.C., a town outside of Charleston.

“I was angry that day. I couldn’t understand how we could spray poison from the sky,” said one man whose bees were among those killed by the spraying.

These bees were killed after Dorchester County sprayed pesticides from the air in an effort to kill mosquitoes that carry the Zika virus.

Just a few weeks ago, Horry County had a confirmed travel-related case of the Zika virus and officials took precautions to prevent the disease from spreading. Among them were spraying for mosquitoes.

Lisa Bourcier, Horry County spokesperson, said the county tracks where beekeepers are and they do not aerial spray over those areas.

In response to the Zika case a few weeks ago, Bourcier said since it was a residential area, there was no threat to bees from spraying for mosquitoes, which was done by backpack sprayers.

Bourcier added that while there is no direct consideration for bees in the Horry County Zika response plan, there is policy in general mosquito spraying.

Will Danford, the owner of Mountain Man Honey and Goods in Myrtle Beach, said there is a direct connection between bee deaths and the kind of spraying done to kill mosquitoes.

“It’s been proven the latest neonicotinoids they have out there are causing a lot of problems for the bees," Danford said. "In fact, a lot of people are pushing for that being one of the major causes of the colony collapse.” 

As a consequence of trying to prevent the spread of the Zika virus, beekeepers are seeing their colonies collapse and the effect could be wide ranging.

“Yeah, we’ve had a tremendous loss,” Danford said. “That’s what’s driving the price of honey up. And there’s no getting around it; it’s just going up.”

According to The Nature Conservancy, since the 1970s, the number of honey bee colonies has dropped from 4 million to 2.5 million.

The danger that has ecologists, beekeepers and farmers worried, is that honey bees are the greatest resource for pollinating our agricultural products, a nearly $800 billion industry in the United States alone.

Copyright WMBF News 2016. All rights reserved.

  • Local NewsLocalMore>>

  • WMBF News to livestream Republican Gubernatorial Debate on May 29

    WMBF News to livestream Republican Gubernatorial Debate on May 29

    Wednesday, May 23 2018 8:42 AM EDT2018-05-23 12:42:07 GMT
    Top Left: John Warren, Top Right: Yancey McGill, Bottom Left: Catherine Templeton, Bottom Right: Kevin Bryant (Source: Facebook)Top Left: John Warren, Top Right: Yancey McGill, Bottom Left: Catherine Templeton, Bottom Right: Kevin Bryant (Source: Facebook)

    On Tuesday, May 29 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m., WMBF News will be broadcasting online a debate between four of the Republican candidates running for Governor. The debate is being hosted by WMBF News partner WYFF in Greenville, who have partnered with Furman University and the Upstate Chamber Coalition.

    More >>

    On Tuesday, May 29 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m., WMBF News will be broadcasting online a debate between four of the Republican candidates running for Governor. The debate is being hosted by WMBF News partner WYFF in Greenville, who have partnered with Furman University and the Upstate Chamber Coalition.

    More >>
  • New study released on ADHD sheds light on rising calls of medication exposure: Experts stress proper diagnosis

    New study released on ADHD sheds light on rising calls of medication exposure: Experts stress proper diagnosis

    Wednesday, May 23 2018 7:49 AM EDT2018-05-23 11:49:57 GMT
    Source: WMBF NewsSource: WMBF News

    Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) among children is rising rapidly nationwide, according to doctors. An estimated 6.4 million children in the United States have been diagnosed with ADHD, leading to the rise of medical treatment like the popular drug, Adderall.

    More >>

    Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) among children is rising rapidly nationwide, according to doctors. An estimated 6.4 million children in the United States have been diagnosed with ADHD, leading to the rise of medical treatment like the popular drug, Adderall.

    More >>
  • New Myrtle Beach exhibit features classic pinball machines

    New Myrtle Beach exhibit features classic pinball machines

    Wednesday, May 23 2018 7:27 AM EDT2018-05-23 11:27:24 GMT
    A new exhibit featuring classic pinball machines from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s has opened in Myrtle Beach (Source: Jerry Pinkas)A new exhibit featuring classic pinball machines from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s has opened in Myrtle Beach (Source: Jerry Pinkas)

    A new exhibit featuring classic pinball machines from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s has opened in Myrtle Beach. According to a news release, the museum features one of the largest collections of pinball machines open to the public in the Palmetto State.

    More >>

    A new exhibit featuring classic pinball machines from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s has opened in Myrtle Beach. According to a news release, the museum features one of the largest collections of pinball machines open to the public in the Palmetto State.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly