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The Neonicotinoid View: The Role of Pesticides In Honeybees

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A study has been conducted by Dr. Brian Eitzer and his team from the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station which analyzed the impact of pesticides on honeybee health.

According to the EPA’s definition, a pesticide is “any substance or mixture of substances intended for: preventing, destroying, repelling, or mitigating any pest. Though often misunderstood to refer only to insecticides, the term pesticide also applies to herbicides, fungicides, and various other substances used to control pests.

Under United States law, a pesticide is also any substance or mixture of substances intended for use as a plant regulator, defoliant, or desiccant.”

In the world of agriculture and especially in beekeeping ,  neonicotinoids have maintained the spotlight as the scientific evidence continues to grow regarding the decline of the world’s bee population. Neonicotinoids are defined by the EPA as a class of insecticides with a common mode of action that affects the central nervous system of insects, causing paralysis and death. All of the neonicotinoids were registered after 1984 and were not subject to reregistration. Some uncertainties have been identified since their initial registration regarding the potential environmental fate and effects of neonicotinoid pesticides, particularly as they relate to pollinators.

In this special series called “The Neonicotinoid View”, hosts, June Stoyer and Tom Theobald will speak to Dr. Brian Eitzer from the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station about his research. Stay tuned!

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