Thursday, March 12th, 2009 | Author:

Although there isn’t any real “news” in this video, it’s important to celebrate the efforts of these two young adults and give props to C-SPAN and them for pumpin’ up the volume! We shouldn’t forget, also, that the Haiti news footage they selected to show “food shortages” comes from the time after the (officially censored) U.S.-sponsored coup of the Haitian government, which has left that already poor country in chaos. Context, context. That country didn’t have much food even before the coup! Better B-roll would have been from the spiking prices in the “First World” supermarkets. Great work, nonetheless. -DNR

Greenwich students win C-SPAN film contest
By Meredith Blake
Staff Writer
Posted: 03/10/2009 11:11:30 PM EDT

After weeks of collecting film clips of honey bee colonies and newsreels on rising food prices and then interviewing leading scientists in the field on colony collapse disorder, Greenwich High School seniors Eliza McNitt and Charles Greene felt ready to complete their documentary for C-SPAN.

Each year the news organization hosts a student documentary contest and this year the topic student films had to address was on the most pressing issue the new president must face.

McNitt and Greene, both 17, chose the problem of the disappearing colonies of honey bees throughout the country and its impact on the cost of food. C-SPAN announced Tuesday that “Requiem for the Honeybee” won first prize out of more than 1000 entries from middle and high school students throughout the country. READ REST…

CAPTION: Greenwich High School seniors Eliza McNitt and Charles Greene received first… (contributed photo)

Requiem for the Honeybee

Category: CCD, News
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3 Responses


    On Thurs., Eliza won the top two prizes in Life Science at the Connecticut Science Fair for her project “Shedding Light on Imidacloprid’s Role in Colony Collapse Disorder.” See this link:…..html

    I’ll put a pdf of Eliza’s 2008 work online for you and post a link here.

  2. in response to:


    The 2008 newspaper report is correct. In her pesticide research last year, Eliza found no traces of Imidacloprid in the honey samples.

    In essence, her intention was to explore whether or not Imidacloprid (and other pesticides) entered the human food chain via honey. She determined this is not happening. While researching pesticides in honey, however, she became interested in CCD.

    This year, with CCD in mind, she focused on the presence of Imidacloprid in the apiary. Here’s what she learned:

    No Imidacloprid traces in pollen, honey or bee bread samples collected from the Bartlett Arboretum hive.

    No Imidacloprid internally within the bees–although apparently she feels more testing is necessary before this finding should be considered conclusive.

    Substantial concentrations of Imidacloprid on the bee extremities–antennae, wings, legs — as well as in the bee’s wax.

    Here’s an automatic download link to a MS Word copy of Eliza’s 2008 Research

    Why doesn’t the Imidacloprid show up in the honey?

    Dave Mendes, a major commercial beekeeper and vice-president of the American Beekeepers Association, told us that he thinks this may because pesticide molecules bond poorly with carbohydrates, but very well with protein. I have no idea if there’s any scientific validity to this, but it’s the only plausible explanation I’ve heard.

    It should be stressed that the hive Eliza researched has not experienced CCD. But her work does prove that while collecting pollen, worker bees introduce Imidacloprid into the hive where, at the very least, it contaminates the bee’s wax cells in which surround developing larvae and very likely contaminates the other bees in the hive as well.

    The HPLC equipment at GHS, by the way, was donated by corporations after Eliza’s chemistry teacher made a compelling argument that it would be more rewarding to give their “obsolete” equipment to GHS that to sell it in the second-hand marketplace.

    Jim McNitt

  1. [...] “found no trace of another insecticide called Imidacloprid”… Jim McNitt commented on my first, however, that Eliza in fact won two science awards, which he reports on his blog. He also writes [...]

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