Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster
Davis Motor Sales banner ad

Insecticide Application Timing Vital to Native Bee Conservation

plos one 300FRANKFORT, Ky. (9/14/13) – Many homeowners may grimace at the sight of grubs, caterpillars or other pests lurking in their lawns, but understanding when and how to apply an insecticide to control these pests could have a big impact on native pollinator populations, according to a researcher from the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment.
 
Jonathan Larson, a UK doctoral student, has found that when neonicotinoids, a type of systemic insecticide, are applied to flowering lawn weeds that are frequented by native bees, such as dandelions and white clovers, the chemicals can negatively impact local pollinator populations.
 
While honeybee population decline has received much attention, bumblebee numbers have also been on the decline. Much like honeybees, bumblebee population decline is related to diseases, pesticides and habitat loss or fragmentation.
 
“With honeybee populations struggling, we need to rely on native bees, such as bumblebees, to pick up the slack on plant pollination,” said Dan Potter, UK entomologist and Larson’s adviser. “Many native bees are much more efficient at pollinating certain types of crops, like tomatoes, urban flowering plants and vegetables grown in home gardens.”
 
Larson’s research, published in the journal PLOS ONE, showed that exposure to clothianidin, a neonicotinoid insecticide, negatively affected queen production. It also slowed foraging and caused higher mortality rates in worker bees within five days after exposure at plots on UK’s Spindletop Research Farm compared to control hives. When moved to an untreated field to forage for six weeks, the bees had a hard time gaining weight compared to the controls. Bumblebees exposed to chlorantraniliprole, from a relatively new class of lawn insecticides, developed and reproduced normally compared to the control hives.
 
“We’re trying to figure out ways that people can safely use insecticides and not affect native pollinators,” Larson said. “One way may be for homeowners and commercial lawn care professionals to use the newer class of insecticide instead of a neonicotinoid to control common lawn pests. Another way could be mowing treated areas.”
 
He found that when clover flowers treated with an insecticide are removed by mowing and new flowers grew to replace them, neither insecticide adversely affected bumblebee colonies.
 
“Direct contamination of the flowers is the problem, so homeowners need to remove the flower heads of weeds either before or after applying an insecticide to prevent exposure to native pollinators,” Larson said.
 
Larson is now studying the level of insecticides present in the nectar of subsequent generations of clover flowers after the field has been treated with an insecticide and the treated flowers have been removed.

The entire PLOS ONE article is available at http://bit.ly/15S6oja. Educational programs of the Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service serve all people regardless of race, color, age, sex, religion, disability, or national origin.
 
SurfKY News
Information provided by Janie Culton

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

In Other News...

Annual Stroke Camp a Success for Survivors, Caregivers, Volunteers

MURRAY, Ky. (9/18/14) — Approximately 45 stroke survivors, caregivers and volunteers gathered at Lake Barkley State… Read More

MCCH Blood Donor Center Announces Critical Need for A-Negative Blood Type

MURRAY, Ky. (9/18/14) — Murray-Calloway County Hospital’s Blood Donor Center is in need of all blood types, but… Read More

Most Read This Week (Site-Wide)

September 15, 2014 5946

Man Accused of Stealing Rural King…

in Top Stories by MCSO PIO Alex Piper
September 16, 2014 4540

Postal Worker Arrested for Terroristic…

in Top Stories by GPD PIO Wes Miller
September 19, 2014 3710

Madisonville Man Among Three Arrested for…

in Top Stories by Muhlenberg Sheriff Curtis McGehee
September 17, 2014 3386

Two Arrested for Meth After Traffic Stop

in Top Stories by Alex Piper
September 17, 2014 3223

Wanted Man Leads Troopers on Chase…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke

Most Read Stories from Hopkins County

September 17, 2014 3223

Wanted Man Leads Troopers on Chase…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
September 19, 2014 2308

Five Injured in Two-Vehicle Collision at…

in Top Stories by MPD Officer Russell Nichols
September 17, 2014 1999

Three Injured in Two-Vehicle Accident

in Top Stories by Kyle Pharris
September 18, 2014 1761

Manitou Man Charged with DUI

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department
September 18, 2014 1640

Vehicle Strikes CSX Train Cars at Crossing

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke

Most Read Stories from Owensboro

September 19, 2014 644

Police Searching for Hit-And-Run Driver

in Top Stories by Jennifer Smith, DCSO
September 19, 2014 559

STREET CLOSINGS FOR MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 22

in Top Stories by Abby Shelton
September 18, 2014 556

Owensboro's Nathan Morris Has Worldwide…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
September 18, 2014 398

9-1-1 Phone Lines

in Top Stories by Michael Hathaway
September 18, 2014 365

Bearcats Return to Owensboro for…

in Top Stories by Kayla Cruse

Most Read Stories from Muhlenberg County

September 15, 2014 5946

Man Accused of Stealing Rural King…

in Top Stories by MCSO PIO Alex Piper
September 16, 2014 4540

Postal Worker Arrested for Terroristic…

in Top Stories by GPD PIO Wes Miller
September 17, 2014 3386

Two Arrested for Meth After Traffic Stop

in Top Stories by Alex Piper
September 17, 2014 1440

Muhlenberg Job Corps Support is 'Written…

in Top Stories by Karen Robinson
September 16, 2014 1394

Former 1977 Graduates Speaks at…

in Top Stories by Karen Robinson

SurfKY News Group, Inc. Central Office & Printing Division
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431  •  270.452.2249 (fax)
Main Number: 270.452.2727 (phone)  •  Printing Division Direct Line: 270.821.8600 (phone)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social 03social 04social 22social 21social 06