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Cathryn



Joined: 16 Jul 2005
Posts: 19829
Location: Ceredigion
PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 15 7:47 pm    Post subject: Neonicotinoids  Reply with quote    

There is some debate in the farming papers about how well the crops have done or not without this addition. There is no information about how it relates to the use of cypermethrin which were used as a replacement in some places but I think it is positive that there is debate rather than the end of the world as we know it doom and gloom when it was first banned.

Hairyloon



Joined: 20 Nov 2008
Posts: 14598
Location: Today I are mostly being in Yorkshire.
PostPosted: Fri Sep 18, 15 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

So what do we know?

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8505

PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 15 5:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Try to keep up with the agro-chemical industry. As far as I understand, farmers asked for some relaxation on the ban because flea beetle became such a problem in some areas, but where it wasn't so bad the yield was better, probably because there were more pollinators.

Tavascarow



Joined: 06 Aug 2006
Posts: 8399
Location: South Cornwall
PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 15 6:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Mistress Rose wrote:
Try to keep up with the agro-chemical industry. As far as I understand, farmers asked for some relaxation on the ban because flea beetle became such a problem in some areas, but where it wasn't so bad the yield was better, probably because there were more pollinators.
These are the facts on a limited time scale.
Some farmers did have to resow after flea beetle attack, not vast areas more localised.
The national yield was up considerably.
All the above based on one season which isn't very scientific but does indicate that maybe the expense of the neonic seed treatment is possibly unjustified & could actually reduce yields.
All of that of course is from a farmers perspective.

From a beekeeper & environmentalists perspective there's enough peer reviewed science that proves the damage these chemicals cause to pollinators & the wider environment.

Hairyloon



Joined: 20 Nov 2008
Posts: 14598
Location: Today I are mostly being in Yorkshire.
PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 15 9:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Mistress Rose wrote:
Try to keep up with the agro-chemical industry...

I cannot keep up with everything. Last I checked, they didn't know: there appears to be research pointing both ways.
I had expected some people here to have looked at some of that research and be able to summarise or review it.

Or can I safely assume the relevant bodies are on top of the problem?

Tavascarow



Joined: 06 Aug 2006
Posts: 8399
Location: South Cornwall
PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 15 11:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Hairyloon wrote:
Mistress Rose wrote:
Try to keep up with the agro-chemical industry...

I cannot keep up with everything. Last I checked, they didn't know: there appears to be research pointing both ways.
I had expected some people here to have looked at some of that research and be able to summarise or review it.

Or can I safely assume the relevant bodies are on top of the problem?
There are about 1,000 scientific peer reviewed papers on the subject.
The majority indicate neonics are bad for the environment, particularly pollinators.
The agrochem industry obviously deny all knowledge, & the government say there isn't enough research.
'Isn't enough research' is a euphemism for 'doesn't agree with what we & our paymasters want.'
All the relevant NGO's are for a complete ban & despite there being a ban in Europe the EU has just granted permission for a very similar pesticide that from early findings might affect mammals as vwell as invertebrates.
Quote:
Or can I safely assume the relevant bodies are on top of the problem?

Doesn't look like it from here.

Hairyloon



Joined: 20 Nov 2008
Posts: 14598
Location: Today I are mostly being in Yorkshire.
PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 15 7:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

[quote="Tavascarow:1449374"]
Hairyloon wrote:
There are about 1,000 scientific peer reviewed papers on the subject.
The majority indicate neonics are bad for the environment, particularly pollinators.

Science is often a matter of quality over quantity.
Which ones are the good ones?

Quote:
The... government say there isn't enough research.

It doesn't matter how much research there is if it is not the right research.
Quote:
Quote:
Or can I safely assume the relevant bodies are on top of the problem?

Doesn't look like it from here.

The "relevant bodies" includes the like of you and everybody else who is up in arms about it.
Don't get me wrong: I am concerned about the bees and I have little doubt that Neonicotinoids have contributed to the problem.
But I am being asked to get a whole lot more upset about it than I am and for that, I want a bit more persuading.

Or not; I'm quite content to remain a bit worried and leave the proper fretting to those who are less cynical...

Cathryn



Joined: 16 Jul 2005
Posts: 19829
Location: Ceredigion
PostPosted: Sat Sep 19, 15 7:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Personally I think it's one of many factors but I am not keen on their use generally and as a farmer, beekeeper and a lover of the environment (like many other farmers) I am pleased that there is less one sided debate and discussion going on within the farming press.

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8505

PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 15 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Hairyloon, there is no point in being worried about things unless you can actively try to do something about them.

I was sceptical to start with about how neonics used as seed dressing could damage bees, but over the years I think there is enough evidence to continue with the ban on the grounds that as we don't know, it is better not to take the risk. I understand that the area where they are allowed is far less that was originally asked for by the NFU, but still not really good. I think we need to have a ban for perhaps 5 years and see if the pollinators increase (particularly bees) and if the farmers can manage without the neonics. As they are a relatively new chemical, they must have managed all right before they were introduced after all, and that must have been within the memory of most farmers.

Tavascarow



Joined: 06 Aug 2006
Posts: 8399
Location: South Cornwall
PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 15 7:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

They have been in wide use extensively since the mid 1990's.
Virtually all maize & rape crops where treated with them before the ban.
Farmers had little choice.

As to research papers.
RFID Tracking of Sublethal Effects of Two Neonicotinoid Insecticides on the Foraging Behavior of Apis mellifera

Pesticide exposure in honey bees results in increased levels of the gut pathogen Nosema

Neonicotinoids, bee disorders and the sustainability of pollinator services

Neonicotinoid clothianidin adversely affects insect immunity and promotes replication of a viral pathogen in honey bees

An insecticide-infection connection in bee colony collapses

ea
sa
c
building science into EU policy
Ecosystem services, agriculture and neonicotinoids (Page 37 onwards).


Seed coating with a neonicotinoid insecticide negatively affects wild bees

Bees prefer foods containing neonicotinoid pesticides.

There's a few to start.

Tavascarow



Joined: 06 Aug 2006
Posts: 8399
Location: South Cornwall
PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 15 7:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

A couple more that demonstrate the wider environmental effect.
Declines in insectivorous birds are associated with high neonicotinoid concentrations

Macro-Invertebrate Decline in Surface Water Polluted with Imidacloprid: A Rebuttal and Some New Analyses

Tavascarow



Joined: 06 Aug 2006
Posts: 8399
Location: South Cornwall
PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 15 8:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Also (but I can't find links for) there are agrochem industry papers that verify sub-lethal effects on target species.
Physiologically there's little difference between a flea beetle & a bee.
Less so than there is between a rat or a beagle & a human being.
So one would expect non target invertebrates to be similarly effected.
They knew this from the start & even advertised the effects.

Rob R



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 31902
Location: York
PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 15 8:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Mistress Rose wrote:
As they are a relatively new chemical, they must have managed all right before they were introduced after all, and that must have been within the memory of most farmers.


They have pushed the boundaries of what can be grown and where. While they wibble over the symptoms noone is talking about the root cause as to why farmers feel the need to grow the stuff (that goes for the farmers too, who tend to respond to the markets, rather than try to change them).

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8505

PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 15 6:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

If it is mainly maize and rape, there will be various reasons for growing them surely. Rape is mainly grown for the oil which has lots of uses, including as bio-oil, while rape is mainly grown as forage isn't it? They also use it as a cover crop round the edges of fields round here.

Tavascarow



Joined: 06 Aug 2006
Posts: 8399
Location: South Cornwall
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 15 8:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Cathryn wrote:
Personally I think it's one of many factors but I am not keen on their use generally and as a farmer, beekeeper and a lover of the environment (like many other farmers) I am pleased that there is less one sided debate and discussion going on within the farming press.

Indeed.
This came in my news feed yesterday.
Glyphosate harms bees' spatial learning.

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