(The Guardian) Agriculture in the United States has become 48 times more toxic to insects over the last 25 years, largely due to neonicotinoid pesticides, according to the study. “We have not learned our lessons… There’s this fundamental recklessness and foolishness to introducing [neonics] and continuing down this path,” says Kendra Klein, an author of the study and a senior scientist at not-for-profit Friends of the Earth. The study can be found here.
(Science) A common pesticide may be causing more collateral damage than thought. According to a new study, neonicotinoids can kill beneficial insects such as honey bees, hoverflies and parasitic wasps by contaminating honeydew, a sugar-rich liquid excreted by certain insects. This can devastate more insects across the food web than nectar contaminated with insecticides could, the research team says, because honeydew is more abundant, especially in agricultural fields.
(EurekAlert/Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry) When applied alone, adjuvants – chemicals commonly added to pesticides to help them spread, adhere to targets, disperse appropriately, prevent drift and so on – caused no significant, immediate toxicity to honeybees. However, when the pesticide acetamiprid was mixed with adjuvants and applied to honeybees in the laboratory, the toxicity was quite significant and immediate: the mortality was significantly higher than for control groups. Additionally, flight intensity, colony intensity and pupae development continued to deteriorate long after the application comparative to the control groups.
(Maine Public) Environment Maine delivered a petition of 8000 signatures to the governor’s office Wednesday, asking that Gov. Janet Mills support a statewide ban of neonicotinoids. Mills was not present to receive the petition.
(KVUE) An environmental group is pushing Texas lawmakers to better protect bees. Environment Texas wants a statewide ban on a bee-killing pesticide. The group delivered more than 12,000 petitions to the state legislature Thursday. It is asking lawmakers to ban pesticides known as neonicotinoids.
(CBS 17) The grassroots group Environment North Carolina delivered a petition with 13,452 signatures to Gov. Roy Cooper’s office, calling for a consumer ban on the sale and use of neonicotinoid pesticides. House Bill 559, also known as the Pollinator Protection Act, stalled in committee this spring.
(EurekAlert/American Chemical Society) Neonicotinoid pesticides continue to be investigated because of their suspected role as a contributing factor in declining bee populations. However, limitations in sampling and analytical techniques have prevented a full understanding of the connection. Now researchers have developed a new type of probe that helps to quantify neonicotinoids in plants and study their movement and distribution throughout the plants over time.
(Washington Post) The EPA announced Monday it has canceled the registrations of 12 pest-killing products with compounds belonging to a class of chemicals known as neonicotinoids, as part of a legal settlement.