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August 20, 2000


CBS News Story on Monarch Butterflies: Junk science all


Junkscience.com - www.junkscience.com

New at Junkscience.com

Bt Corn kills Monarch butterfly, study claims

A new study to be featured on CBS News tonight claims pollen from Bt corn
plants has a lethal effect on Monarch butterfly larvae.

The full study is at http://www.junksience.com.

Should a new round of Bt corn-hysteria develop from the CBS report on this
study, please keep in mind:

-- The new study stands in the shadow of more than 20 independent studies
by widely recognized scientific experts. It investigates only one small
area of this complex topic and is in stark contrast to the conclusions of
this broader scientific community's research - which has found that Bt
corn does not pose a significant risk to the Monarch butterfly.

-- The new study is not "field research." The conditions represented in
his study do not represent what one would actually find in the field as it
relates to monarch mortality. In fact, the researcher states in his paper
that larvae mortality was not correlated with the number of pollen grains
on the plant or the plant location within or at the edge of the field.

-- Last year, more than 28 million acres were planted with Bt corn, which
was about a 40% increase from the previous year. In the same time period,
the monarch butterfly population flourished, and increased by about 30%.

-- A University of Illinois study conducted on black swallowtail
butterflies this summer, found that under actual field conditions there
was no evidence that Bt corn harmed the butterflies.

Steve Milloy


This is the blurb that CBS is using in its email promoting tonight's
> newscast. Not good:
> In tonight's EYE ON AMERICA report... Wyatt Andrews tells us how
> America's favorite insect, the monarch butterfly, is dying from the pollen
> of gene-altered corn. The results of the first field study of genetically
> modified "BT corn" are in, and, the findings have some scientists
> questioning the EPA's approval of this gene-altered crop.