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Home / Science / The use of pesticides in the U.S. has declined, but it is more harmful to pollinators

The use of pesticides in the U.S. has declined, but it is more harmful to pollinators



Research: The use of pesticides in the United States has fallen, but it is more harmful to pollinators

In this file photo on July 16, 2014, a bee works on a honeycomb in an apiary in central California. A study published in the journal Science on Thursday, April 1, 2021, found that American farmers are using a small number of more targeted pesticides, but these pesticides are far more harmful to pollinators, aquatic insects and certain plants. Ten years ago. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, file)

A new study found that American farmers are using smaller amounts of more targeted pesticides, but these pesticides are far more harmful to pollinators, aquatic insects and certain plants than decades ago.

Since 2005, as the country switched to a new generation of pesticides, the level of toxicity to important species (including bees, plum blossoms and hairy cups) has more than doubled. However, according to a paper in Thursday’s magazine, the levels of dangerous chemicals in birds and mammals have decreased at the same time. science.

“The most important thing is that these pesticides were once considered relatively benign, and their lifespan was so short that they would not damage the ecosystem, but nothing more,” said Lynn Ge, former assistant administrator for toxic substances at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Dr. Deman said.Not part of this research, now the dean of the George Washington University School of Public Health

German scientists examined 381 pesticides used in the United States from 1992 to 2016, and combined EPA data that calculated the toxic dose effects of 8 plants and animals with U.S. geological survey data on dozens of agricultural chemicals used each year. . Scientists calculated a new measurement method. They called the total applied toxicity of these eight species and the trend over time as the total toxicity.

Lead author Ralf Schulz (Ralf Schulz) said: “Politicians, media, and scientists often talk about quantity. They always argue,’Well, the amount of pesticides we use decreases, the situation becomes more and more. Okay.” Natural science major at Korenz-Landau University. “Sometimes it is true, but not always.”

Research: The use of pesticides in the United States has declined, but it is more harmful to pollinators

In this file photo from August 4, 2009, crop dust collectors are sprayed on a field in Alabama. A study published in the journal Science on Thursday, April 1, 2021, found that American farmers are using a small number of more targeted pesticides, but these pesticides are far more harmful to pollinators, aquatic insects and certain plants. Ten years ago. (AP Photo/Dave Martin, file)

Schultz said the industry has been developing new pesticides, and “these new compounds are usually more toxic.” They include neonicotinoids, and they are related to one of the many reasons for the decrease in bees.

Schultz said that the newer insecticides are more targeted at animals without backbones, lest birds and mammals survive, but this means that insects such as pollinators will be poisoned.

He said that some of the land plants and aquatic invertebrates eaten by birds and mammals, including dragonflies and may, are the same, adding that future research should focus on the higher end of the food chain.

Chris Novak, president of the pesticide industry group CropLife America, said in an email: “It is crucial that the study found that the acute toxicity of humans and mammals has been greatly reduced over the past few decades. .”

Novak pointed out that pesticides have undergone extensive research and “only one out of every 10,000 discoveries has an 11-year journey from the laboratory to the market.”

University of Connecticut entomologist David Wagner (David Wagner) said that a new generation of pesticides is more harmful to insects, which is not surprising, for many reasons, insects are being reduced. But Wagner said that this latest study did not provide the necessary data to prove that “pesticides are the main driving force behind the decline of insects.”


Insecticides have a 1-2 punch effect on bees


More information:
R. Schulz et al. “Even in genetically modified crops, the application toxicity of pesticides is also transferred to plants and invertebrates.” science (2021). science.sciencemag.org/cgi/doi…1126 / science.abe1148

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Citation: Research: The use of pesticides in the United States is declining but the harm to pollinators is greater (April 1, 2021). From https://phys.org/news/2021-04-pesticide-toxicity- on April 2, 2021 threatens-bees-marine.html

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