Announcements

Job offersmore »



Tweeting Growers

Top 5 - yesterday

Top 5 - last week

Top 5 - last month

Exchange ratesmore »




Cornell research finds pesticides in honeybees' stored food

Honeybees – employed to pollinate crops during the blooming season – encounter danger due to lingering and wandering pesticides, according to a new Cornell University study that analyzed the bee’s own food.

Researchers used 120 pristine honeybee colonies that were placed near 30 apple orchards around New York state. After allowing the bees to forage for several days during the apple flowering period, the scientists examined each hive’s “beebread” – the bees’ food stores made from gathered pollen – to search for traces of pesticides.


Honeybees create honey in their hive through the topped-out combs, and they keep beebread - their food - in the other combs. Credit: Emma Mullen

In 17 percent of colonies, the beebread revealed the presence of acutely high levels of pesticide exposure, while 73 percent were found to have chronic exposure.

“Surprisingly, there is not much known about the magnitude of risk or mechanisms of pesticide exposure when honeybees are brought in to pollinate major agricultural crops,” said lead author Scott McArt, assistant professor of entomology at Cornell. “Beekeepers are very concerned about pesticides, but there’s very little field data. We’re trying to fill that gap in knowledge, so there’s less mystery and more fact regarding this controversial topic.”

More than 60 percent of the found pesticides were attributed to orchards and surrounding farmland that were not sprayed during the apple bloom season, according to the study. McArt said that persistent insecticides aimed at other crops may be surrounding the orchards. In addition, pre-bloom sprays in orchards may accumulate in nearby flowering weeds.

“We found risk was attributed to many different types of pesticides. Neonicotinoids were not the whole story, but they were part of the story.” he said. “Because neonicotinoids are persistent in the environment and accumulate in pollen and nectar, they are of concern. But one of our major findings is that many other pesticides contribute to risk.”

The study, “High Pesticide Risk to Honeybees Despite Low Focal Crop Pollen Collection During Pollination of a Mass Blooming Crop" was published April 19 in Nature Scientific Reports.

The New York Farm Viability Institute funded this research.

Source: Cornell University

Publication date: 4/25/2017

 


 

Other news in this sector:

11/21/2017 Indian agriculture department on alert for banned pesticides
11/20/2017 "Entomopathogenic nematodes effectively kill fungus gnat pests"
11/20/2017 UK: Look out for lettuce Fusarium wilt, growers urged
11/20/2017 UK: Iprodione withdrawal confirmed
11/20/2017 US (OR): OMRI responds to ODA advisory on Azatrol ban
11/20/2017 Spain: Request to include citrus on list of high risk plants
11/17/2017 New tool predicts risk of plant disease
11/17/2017 Italy: Essential oils extracted from weeds used as a natural herbicide
11/17/2017 Liddor helps STK in advancing its production of biopesticides
11/16/2017 Building a database of plant protecting agents for aquaponic systems
11/16/2017 How is the marriage between biologicals and chemicals really going?
11/15/2017 Niger: Root-knot nematode found in sweet pepper
11/15/2017 Dutch laser technology used successfully against troublesome birds
11/14/2017 Australia: Tomato potato psyllid surveillance ramps up for spring
11/14/2017 STK's Timorex Gold biofungicide wins Provider of Choice Award
11/14/2017 "Wild tomatoes can help in making commercial varieties disease-free"
11/14/2017 UK: Bees' Needs Champions awards celebrate pollinator heroes
11/13/2017 Spain: New Delhi virus reduces and delays courgette production
11/13/2017 How thrips choose their partners
11/13/2017 US: New natural bactericide & fungicide for cannabis & hemp