Thursday, 15 August 2019

Researchers find neonicotinoids present a danger to pollinators


AUGUST 8, 2019 REPORT
by Bob Yirka , Phys.org
A small team of environmentalists with Friends of the Earth, Toxicology Research International and Pesticide Research Institute has carried out a study of insecticide toxicity loading of chemical pesticides that are used on agricultural lands in the U.S. They have concluded that neonicotinoids present a major danger to pollinating insects and have posted their results on the open-access site PLOS ONE.
In the study (funded by Friends of the Earth), the group looked at the impact of the increased use of neonicotinoids on farming products in the U.S. They note that use of such insecticides has increased dramatically in the past 20 years.
Neonicotinoids are a class of insecticides that target the nervous systems of insects—they are both less expensive to make and less toxic to humans than other products, making them an appealing option for agriculture applications. The researchers note that they are far more toxic to insects, including those not targeted by agricultural practices than prior industrial insecticides. They also last a lot longer in the soil and are water-soluble, which means they travel from the soil to the water table when it rains.

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