German researchers report that lithium chloride “is highly effective” in killing Varroa mites, a parasite commonly listed as one of the major reasons for high mortality among the pollinating insects.
Virtually no organic honey sold commercially in the U.S. comes from domestic hives, as commodity-crop farmers convert ever more grassland into cropland, leaving honeybees with fewer pesticide-free fields to forage, reports Civil Eats. North Dakota, for instance, which produces more honey than any other state, lost more than 100,000 acres of grassland over the past decade.
The government set a 30-day comment period "on how a federal standard of identity for honey would be in the interest of consumers, the honey industry and U.S. agriculture."
Two co-founders of the Center for Watershed Sciences at UC-Davis "calculate that the chances of another winter with below-average precipitation to be nearly three in four" for California, says the science blog at KQED in San Francisco.