A slightly edited copy of an emergency request:
Sent at 11:30 am, October 6, 1999
Dr. Von H. McCaskill, Department Head, Dept. of Pesticide Regulation
Cecil Hernandez, Regulatory Specialist, Charleston
Barry Kostyk, Regulatory Specialist, Horry County
Lee Galloway, Pee Dee Research & Experiment Center
Dr. Mike Hood Apicultural Specialist, Clemson Universtity
As you know, I provided the Department of Pesticide Regulation a report of a clearcut violation of the pesticide label in Horry County Sunday. We all know there are many more violations going on, but I cannot monitor the entire situation. I have donated about a week of my time for this public service monitoring, but I also am self employed and have to pay my bills.
Bees will be foraging heavily today, and for the next few days. Goldenrod, a prime bee forage plant is in full bloom; asters are beginning. There are also many other fallflowers along the roadsides and in fields that are foraged by bees. Applications in violation, of materials that prohibit application while bees are foraging, will cause massive damage to our pollinator populations. Growers who have lost their crops to drought and flooding this year may lose them next year to lack of pollinators. The second loss is from an entirely human cause, and is preventable, simply by requiring that applicators obey the law.
Bees began carrying pollen this morning at about 10 am. I expect they will be carrying it heavily throughout the afternoon, reaching peak foraging in mid to late afternoon and, based on experience should end around 6 or 6:30 pm. The latter time is an estimate, and actual application should be based on actual figures.
I request the following emergency action:
1. That the Department of Pesticide Regulation make spot checks during the hours that
bees are foraging, to determine that applicators are in compliance with the bee-protection
2. That the Department require applicators to determine, prior to applications, by actual obervance, not by guess, that bees are not foraging, with all materials that prohibit application during bee forage times.
3. That State Apiary Specialist, Dr. Mike Hood, provide assistance to applicators by monitoring the times that bees are foraging, to provide an official source of information to applicators, and to personally come to the area experiencing these widespread post-hurricane applications to assist beekeepers in monitoring and enforcement.
4. That the Department of Pesticide Regulation no longer condone applicator evasion of the label requirements by requiring beekeepers to protect bees. Besides being an illegal scheme, it is an impossible scheme, as beekeepers have enough problems with flooding, mud, downed trees, little funds and the normal responsibilities of making a living.
5. That the Department of Pesticide Regulation seek to require violators to make restoration, just as those who poison a stream are required to restock fish. Horry County should be required to restock honeybees by March 20, 2000 at the rate of 2 hives per square mile, to replace honeybees and other pollinators lost in these violations.
This is also a Freedom of Information request from each of the named addresees for documentation of the response to this letter.
David L. Green
Pot o'Gold Honey Co.
POB 1200 Hemingway, SC