Time-dependent Toxicity of Imidacloprid in Bees and Ants

Honeybee colony losses continue to be unacceptably high.  In the US this spring, colonies brought in to California to pollinate almonds from throughout the country, about half of the colonies were lost (New York Times, March 29, 2013).  It is generally accepted that multiple pathogens ultimately bring down stressed colonies (Cornman 2012).  However the role [...]

Resolving the Imidacloprid Paradox and the CCD Connection

There are quite a number of studies that show imidacloprid and other neonicotinoid insecticides don't do much damage to honeybees at levels expected in field conditions.  Yet there is plenty of evidence that "country" bees do better than "farm" bees. The big migratory beekeepers are the one's suffering the most, often with losses over 100% a year, [...]

I’m getting rid of Imidacloprid – Avoiding the Worst Neonicotinoid Insecticides

I'm often asked which products are OK and which should be avoided.  Hence the mnemonic in the title to help you remember I'm getting rid of Imidacloprid.  Say it three times out loud, and when you read the labels at the garden store you will remember:  I'm getting rid of Imidacloprid. When it comes to [...]

The Case Against Imidacloprid

Ever since French beekeepers saw their bees dying as they collected pollen from treated sunflowers back in 1996, beekeepers have been concerned that their bees are being harmed the highly toxic neonicotinoid insecticides, with imidacloprid most widely used. The use of this class of insecticide has grown steadily ever since. Bee losses have become chronic [...]

Banning Bee-Killing Pesticides

Last week three major home store chains in the UK took insecticides with troublesome neonicotinoid systemics off their shelves.  The chains, Wicks, B&Q, and HomeBase no longer have insecticides containing clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiamethoxam, the three neonicotinoids deemed most toxic and problematic to honeybees in a recent announcement from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).  The EFSA recommends, among other things, [...]