Popular Pesticides Keep Bumblebees From Laying Eggs
A new study is adding to evidence that a popular class of pesticides, neonicotinoids, can harm wild bees, like bumblebees.

Wild bees, such as bumblebees, don’t get as much love as honeybees, but they should.

They play just as crucial a role in pollinating many fruits, vegetables and wildflowers, and compared to managed colonies of honeybees, they’re in much greater jeopardy.

A group of scientists in the United Kingdom decided to look at how bumblebee queens are affected by some widely used and highly controversial pesticides known as neonicotinoids. What they found isn’t pretty.

Neonics, as they’re often called, are applied as a coating on the seeds of some of the most widely grown crops in the country, including corn, soybeans and canola. These pesticides are “systemic” — they move throughout the growing plants. Traces of them end up in pollen, which bees consume. Neonicotinoid residues also have been found in the pollen of wildflowers growing near fields and in nearby streams…

anonymous asked:

You know they don't kill sheep for wool right ? Sheering is actually very good for sheep because it gets really matted and heavy on them. Leading to heat stroke and other things of that nature.

“Moreover, just as the dairy industry implicitly supports the meat industry by supplying it with veal calves and female cows whose milk production levels have dropped, wool funnels sheep who are no longer producing profitable levels of wool into the meat industry, often through live export which entails its own unique set of abhorrent practices. Ultimately, every shorn sheep will be brought to slaughter.”

“One might also mistakenly believe that a sheep needs to be shorn, but the reality is more complicated. Undomesticated sheep produce only the amount of wool that they need to survive in their climate. Again, as we have bred chickens and pigs to grow so large that their legs can no longer support them, we have used genetic engineering to manipulate the sheep’s wool production to meet our designs.” - Read more here & here & here.

“Mass production and processing of wool can have some hefty environmental impacts.Most sheep farms dip their sheep in poisonous insecticide baths to ward off lice and ticks. Organophosphate insecticides can harm farm workers, impacting the central nervous system.  These pesticides also leave residues on wool that makes its way into your clothes.” 

Anything being mass produced is not going to be handled well, especially when animals are involved because they’re treated like things not beings. People forget that veganism means supporting no animal exploitation at all or using any animal products. Like I said in my last ask if you’ve got wool stuff (idk how people wear that scratchy stuff but whatevs) wear it by all means if you need to but going out and buying new wool clothes isn’t vegan.


Dealing with Mealybugs

I’ve had an outbreak of those sapsucking, powderpuffs known as mealies. They can really damage your plants, especially succulents. They produce a powdery white fluff that helps protect them from pesticide sprays and predators. Since I’ve been so busy living life and stuff, I wasn’t able to keep as close an eye on my plants as I should have, which in turn allowed some of my plants to get so infested by mealybugs that they shuffled off their mortal coil and rejoined the carbon cycle. 

But, I have been able to save many without the use of nasty systemic pesticides, which many claim are the only way to truly deal with mealybug infestation.  With a little bit elbow grease, a bamboo skewer, and some neem oil, it is possible to defeat these little plant sucking buggers.

  • Step 1 - Remove all dead leaves and infested leaves from the base. The goal is to keep them from reaching the meristem, which is usually at the center of stem. The place where the little leaves come from and turn into big leaves is the meristem. If there is any sign of those little fuzzy buggers, get rid of the leaf. When I was treating this Echeveria imbricata I removed almost every leaf on the stem, leaving just the very tip.
  • Step 2 - Take the bamboo skewer and scrape away any remaining fluffs and little mealy bugs on the stems. Check between the remaining leaves and get rid of anything suspicious. Dip the tip in rubbing alcohol periodically and to cleanse it and to teach those little buggers a lesson. Try to leave nothing but plant material behind, and make sure to get rid of all their protective fuzz.
  • Step 3 - Use a neem oil topical spray and lightly douse the affected area. I buy a concentrate at a local nursery, dilute it, and put it in a spray bottle, though you could use a Q-tip or other method. Be careful not to make it too strong or you can burn the leaves and kill them, which kind of defeats the whole purpose. 
  • Step 4 - Repeat as often as possible until those little sap suckers learn their lesson, and are returned to their sad little corner of hell.

* Disclaimer 1 - Sadly, the plant pictured above was way too far gone to save. Other stems in the same pot were saved.

* Disclaimer 2 - It may also be necessary to check the roots of the plant, as mealies can infest the roots as well. If they are found in the roots, things get much more complicated. Maybe someday I’ll have the energy to describe said complications.

Above all, stay strong and diligent. You too can overcome mealy bugs without using nasty pesticides, I hope.

Good Luck and Godspeed!