Tuesday, August 19, 2014

bees to birds

I have covered the threats to bees and other pollinators a few times since the emergence of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) in the noughties (see the label bees, although this blog doesn't quite go back to the very beginning of the problem). Gradually, the emphasis shifted to the question of if and how systemic pesticides and in particular the neonicotinoids, could through indirect or subtle sublethal effects cause pollinator problems.

Ecologists have now compiled evidence suggesting that it's not just the pollinators that suffer from systemic pesticides accumulating in soil and surface water. Collateral damage ranges from annelid worms to birds, and valuable ecosystem services (beyond pollination) are under threat. I've written a feature about all this which is now out in Current Biology (restricted access):

Systemic pesticide concerns extend beyond the bees
Current Biology Volume 24, Issue 16, pR717–R720, 18 August 2014
Summary and restricted access to full text and PDF file

Bumblebees in a garden in Germany. Own photo.

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