Massive bee plague begins again in Tatarstan —

Arsk Details

The heat in Tatarstan has a detrimental effect on the beekeeping industry, moreover, on two fronts. Directly – as Tatarstan beekeepers said, due to the hot weather there is still almost no honey in the hives today, although a year ago it was already actively extracted. Indirectly, as Marat Minnebayev, Director General of the Department of Aquaculture and Beekeeping of the State Budgetary Institution of the Republic of Tatarstan says, it is necessary to treat “certain crops with certain insecticides”, this which sometimes leads to the mass extinction of bee colonies in neighborhood apiaries. Such a mass plague took place in Tatarstan for the third year in a row.

In 2019, according to official data alone, more than 3,000 bee colonies died (beekeepers themselves today estimate the losses of that year at 20,000 bee colonies). The main version is the death of chemicals that farmers use to treat rapeseed fields against pests. In 2020, there were cases of bee poisoning in the Zainsk district. This year, cases of poisoning of bees are already known in Arsk, but it turned out that this is not an isolated case.

The main version is the death of chemicals that farmers use to treat rapeseed fields from pests

In Arsk, bees died on several farms at once. According to the farmers, the insects were poisoned by pesticides from neighboring enterprises – Severny Sovkhoz and Tashkichu PLC. Representatives of these companies said they were carrying out work in accordance with the rules, at night and after warning beekeepers via a Whatsapp group. Such groups were created in 2020 in each district solely for the interaction of beekeepers and farmers. There is a Whatsapp group, consisting of beekeepers and personally the Minister of Agriculture and Food of the Republic of Tatarstan Marat Zyabbarov, industry representatives said. Affected farmers in Arsk confirmed they had been warned, but it is impossible to “hide” the bees in the heat – they will simply die from the heat in the hives.

As the media drew attention, the Severny agricultural enterprise belongs to Mintimer Mingazov. He is the son of the former general director of Vamin, Vagiz Mingazov, now deputy head of the branch of the federal state budget institution of the Russian Agricultural Center in Tatarstan.

“It’s sad what happened in Arsk, it’s a region with a strong agricultural culture, we have very good contacts with the leaders of the district, there were no problems. Surprisingly, they have began to delve into it, and in all districts it is so … Who owns the company – the former head of the district, dear comrade Mingazov The characteristic feature is that in all districts where poisoning takes place, it is either a former cadre or a former director, the ‘local oligarchs'”, commented the head of the Beekeepers of Tatarstan, Shavkat Khayrullin.

The situation was further complicated by the following. According to Mash Iptash, the commission that came to take samples was forced to remove the video of the death of the bees from the Internet. Commenting on this incident, Minnibayev said that the beekeeper did not address the commission after the insects died, but simply posted a video on the network. The commission, which arrived only after that, discovered that the beekeeper did not have a mandatory apiary passport and that the actual number of hives (35 of them) did not coincide with what was indicated in the data of the village council (according to newspapers — 10). He did not comment on the actions of the commission, but added that the commission had examined the apiary.

However, it is extremely problematic to recover compensation for damages without a correct passport and documents, adds Shavkat Khayrullin. But even with the documents, beekeepers still don’t win in court – for example, commissions don’t always take samples correctly. In winter, commission members will be trained, Khayrullin said.

Khayrullin struggled to name the total number of bee colonies that have already died this year. Photo:

The press service of the Ministry of Agriculture and Food of Tatarstan reported: after publications about the death of bees from the beekeeper in Arsk, an investigation in the territory was organized with the participation of employees of the RGVO, District Department of Agriculture, Departments of Rosselkhoznadzor and Rosselkhoznadzor District Center, Village Council and Chief Agronomist. Following the incident described in the publications, it was discovered that there were more than 30 hives in the apiary, of which a partial death was recorded in 5.

“Red zones” for beekeeping

Khayrullin named those colonies in Tatarstan where, according to his information, there have already been problems with the poisoning of bees.

  • In addition to Arsk, cases of poisoning were recorded in Muslyumovo – there, according to Khayrullin, there were problems with the households of the Avgust and Tugan Yak agricultural enterprises. The first is part of Avgust JSC near Moscow (which strongly disagrees with the point about “local oligarchs”), the second is the subsidiary of Chelny-Khleb JSC. Realnoe Vremya failed to quickly reach the management of these companies on their telephone numbers.
  • There have also been poisonings in Tetyushy and Mamadysh – at the same time, in 2019, there were “the most massive massacres” in Tetyushy.
  • Pestretsy — recently there was beeb damage, 90 colonies of bees died.
  • . At the same time, the notification system via Whatsapp chat in Buinsk did not work, because the poisonous substance came from neighboring Tetyushi.

Khayrullin struggled to name the total number of bee colonies that have already died this year.

The Federal Law “On Beekeeping” has not yet banned the use of the most dangerous class 1 and 2 pesticides. Photo:

He also complained that not only bees are dying from pesticides, but also other representatives of the animal world – birds and hedgehogs. The reporting system doesn’t always work well — he says farmers don’t always provide complete information about time or place.

There are also other problems. For example, in Tatarstan (and other regions) there are no accredited laboratories that could analyze dead bees, and these results could serve as convincing evidence in court. The Federal Law “On Beekeeping” ​​has never prohibited the use of the most dangerous class 1 and 2 pesticides (Khayrullin blames the “farmers’ lobby” for this – initially such a ban was planned in the draft law), although in fact these pesticides are still not used in Tatarstan. However, bees are also poisoned by less hazardous class 3 and 4 pesticides – as Khairullin says, due to inept use.

Bashkir or Tatar

Since last year there have been discussions in Tatarstan about registering its own brand for Tatar honey – neighboring Bashkiria has long had such a brand. Dmitry Kryukov, a member of the Council of Beekeepers of Tatarstan, said Tatarstan honey is no different from Bashkir honey, but the brand “Bashkir honey” is better known.

“Bashkir honey is on everyone’s lips, everyone praises it in Russia. I believe Tatarstan honey is no worse, because the honey base is the same in Tatarstan and Bashkiria. Whether here or there, lime trees flourish in both regions. The only thing for which the beekeepers and rulers of Bashkiria should be recognized – they created the “Bashkir honey” brand,” Kryukov said.

“Good for Bashkir, but our honey is no worse, wholesalers from Bashkir also come to us, buy our honey and then sell it here as ‘Bashkir’, but that’s no different,” revealed Khayrullin among the honey traders. ” in response.

Director of the Department of Aquaculture and Beekeeping of the State Budgetary Institution of the Republic of Tatarstan, Marat Minnebayev, said that such a mark is already registered, and in August the appearance official branding is expected – it will be called ‘Tatarstan Baly’ (translated as ‘Honey from Tatarstan’).

At the same time, beekeepers added that there are no accredited laboratories in Tatarstan to determine the quality of honey – it must be transported to Bashkiria. The Ministry of Agriculture and Food of Tatarstan is working on the creation of such a laboratory, the beekeepers said.

By Alexander Artemyev


Rose D. Jones