What killed his bees?

Trigger warning I'm taking this sad/feelgood piece apart.
This article is making the rounds and it is inspiring people to let dandelions grow so we can save the bees!! At first glance that seems reasonable and something we can all do to save the bees.
The problem is that's it's a stop gap measure. First off this article is riddled with errors, what they describe as a split is actually requeening. More importantly no information on why the colonies perished was disclosed. He should have sent samples in for a necropsy so he would know what the actual cause was. It's easy to point to a suspect and accuse it of guilt, we can throw anything out and claim it killed his bees.
Of course statistically the most likely cause of the deaths would be varroa mites but they are only mentioned in passing.
Now those beautiful dandelions......Dandelions are an import and passing source of nectar for native and honeybees but only one source in the seasons nectar flow. To make the statement "When I see the fields full of dandelions, I know I will never lose another beehive." is absurd. Dandelions come out early in the spring and as I said only one of many important sources of food. Blackberries which should be a fall food source are more important to ensure the colonies have ample supplies of food.
Which leads to the core issue here: Without directly saying that his bees starved to death it is implied. People kill dandelions and that killed his bees. BUT if they did starve he, not the lack of dandelions was the cause. When dearths hit, dearths being a lack of nectar and pollen, bees start to consume their stores and if the dearth lasts long enough they risk not having enough food to make it through winter. It is the beekeepers responsibility to ensure they have enough food, if stores are low to feed them so they can pack away what they need for the winter. If he ignored that he was negligent just like not feeding other livestock but we wouldn't blame a lack of dandelions for causing a pig to starve to death would we?
Climate change is wreaking havoc and tearing apart our natural cycles. We can no long predict the weather long term, we have been experiencing record breaking droughts in the Pacific Northwest while the East is getting record rains.
So let your dandelions grow and plant plenty flowers, there is nothing wrong with that but if you want to see change take to the streets and demand action on climate change.


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