Official: phones sting bees
Set them to buzz
Britain's honeybee population is in decline and some scientists now believe the blame lies with mobile phones.
Bee expert Dr Daniel Favre was able to monitor the effects of mobile phone radiation on bees by placing his handset under a hive. When the phone was making and receiving calls, the bees responded with high pitched "worker piping" - a sign they are about to swarm. Within minutes of the call ending, the bees had calmed down again.
Humans, when woken at 7am by roadworks right outside their home, will probably act in a similar manner. Perhaps bees are just more impatient with their disturbances.
Previous experiments have shown that bees alter their behaviour after even the tiniest of changes in the local geomagnetic field intensity. When a mobile phone is kept near a beehive, the colony collapses within five to ten days, leaving just queens, eggs and hive-bound immature bees.
The phenomenon apparently accounts for 43 per cent of all bee losses, with overwintering (39 per cent) and mite disease (15 per cent) some of the other perceived causes. Pesticides, which have long been considered a major catalyst in bee decline, only account for three per cent of loss.
Download the full report here: Mobile phone-induced honeybee worker piping. ®
the scientific method
"4/ Kick off several other studies to try and disprove the claim"
When you do this, you're following the scientific method. That's what you do experiments for - you're trying to disprove a claim.
If phones really did affect bees, we'd be hearing about large colony losses in metropolitan areas. As it is London beekeepers, for example, do very well and are thriving. Explain that!
But you'll remember there was no discernable activity when the phones were on stanby mode. If mobile towers were the problem then you would expect the presence of the phones to have no additional effect (apart from potentially increasing the level of upset in the hive). You would also expect the hives to be in a continuous state of upheaval not just 30mins after the initiation of a transmission.
The journal article doesnt mention the distance to mobile towers so i cant comment there, but i honestly cant imagine that this is a problem. Unless your hives are located directly within the region of a tower, where radio strength is constantly at the same level as that which is experienced during a phone call...
just a quick scan, but looking at the charts, aren't they measuring audio signals, instead of radio signals ?
So you could run the experiment with an audio file and conclude that Justin Bieber is killing the bees..
Having read the journal article...
The claims that 43% of bee losses are caused by electromagnetic radiation from mobile phones is utterly preposterous!
The bees only began to react to the presence of the phones only AFTER 30minutes of active talking and when the phone was switched off 15minutes after this (so a 45 min call) they returned to normal activity in just 3 minutes at this time. They showed ZERO reaction to phones located in the hives which were on standby. When the phones were used for 20hours of active talking, THEN the bees reacted for some 12 hours after the conversation stopped, but honestly how likely is it that someone would be actively using a cellphone for 20 hours whilst sitting on top of a beehive! Oh and did i mention that the phones were within 10cm of the hive seperated only by the wall of the hive?
Perhaps if future research is done and shows that with the phones 1m, 5m and 10m away similar results are achieved then its maybe something worth discussing, but for now this is just scaremongering and really tells us nothing. If anything, it identifies that mobile phones are not responsible for bee losses because a standard mobile phone call (99% of which would fall well under 30mins in length) have absolutely no discernable effect on a beehive!!!
So thank you for this study showing that mobile phones are not responsible...