Insecticide blamed for bee kill

Insecticide blamed for bee kill Click to Enlarge Photo:

Oct 2, 2013 at 5:38 pm

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (AP) A large-scale bee kill in Minneapolis last month is being blamed on a common insecticide.

Investigators traced the kill to fipronil, an insecticide commonly used by commercial companies around the foundations of buildings to control insects, including ants, box elder bugs and yellow jackets.

Piles of dead and twitching bees were noticed in front of three honey bee colonies in the Kenwood neighborhood on Sept. 12.

Samples of the dead bees were sent to a lab in North Carolina, where exposure to fipronil was confirmed.

Investigators from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture believe the insecticide was likely used on a foundation and got on nearby plants or flowers. Bees seeking nectar from those plants then carried the poison back to their hives.

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