Or so the claim goes. Apparently it is a fungus tag teaming with a virus. But, is it?
Someone else thinks.... perhaps not.
The long list of possible suspects has included pests, viruses, fungi, and also pesticides, particularly so-called neonicotinoids, a class of neurotoxins that kills insects by attacking their nervous systems. For years, their leading manufacturer, Bayer Crop Science, a subsidiary of the German pharmaceutical giant Bayer AG, has tangled with regulators and fended off lawsuits from angry beekeepers who allege that the pesticides have disoriented and ultimately killed their bees. The company has countered that, when used correctly, the pesticides pose little risk.
But the Bee mystery was solved. Hurrah. And it was not pesticides, particularly the neonicotinoids.
So who suddenly solved this mystery?
What the Times article did not explore -- nor did the study disclose -- was the relationship between the study's lead author, Montana bee researcher Dr. Jerry Bromenshenk, and Bayer Crop Science. In recent years Bromenshenk has received a significant research grant from Bayer to study bee pollination.
So a researcher with a significant grant from Bayer "solves" the Bee die off mystery and fails to mention the pesticides at all? And there is more...
Indeed, before receiving the Bayer funding, Bromenshenk was lined up on the opposite side: He had signed on to serve as an expert witness for beekeepers who brought a class-action lawsuit against Bayer in 2003. He then dropped out and received the grant.
Well, isn't that interesting? Before getting his big grant ( read: palms greased)he was on side with the beekeepers who had brought a class action suit.
What else motivates our scientist beside money? More money!
Bromenshenk's company, Bee Alert Technology, which is developing hand-held acoustic scanners that use sound to detect various bee ailments, will profit more from a finding that disease,( fungal and viral disease) and not pesticides, is harming bees.
In other words, this scientist determined it was the very disease killing bees that his hand held acoustic device is designed to detect. An amazing coincidence, really, no really.
None the less Bromenshenk defends his studies failure to consider pesticide usage.
Bromenshenk defends the study and emphasized that it did not examine the impact of pesticides. "It wasn't on the table because others are funded to do that"
So, was he funded to NOT DO THAT?
Keeping this in mind.
Dr. Bromenshenk "did not volunteer his funding sources."
Read this article for more information