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Article Publish Status: FREE
Abstract Title:

Sub-lethal effects of dietary neonicotinoid insecticide exposure on honey bee queen fecundity and colony development.

Abstract Source:

Sci Rep. 2016 Aug 26 ;6:32108. Epub 2016 Aug 26. PMID: 27562025

Abstract Author(s):

Judy Wu-Smart, Marla Spivak

Article Affiliation:

Judy Wu-Smart

Abstract:

Many factors can negatively affect honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) health including the pervasive use of systemic neonicotinoid insecticides. Through direct consumption of contaminated nectar and pollen from treated plants, neonicotinoids can affect foraging, learning, and memory in worker bees. Less well studied are the potential effects of neonicotinoids on queen bees, which may be exposed indirectly through trophallaxis, or food-sharing. To assess effects on queen productivity, small colonies of different sizes (1500, 3000, and 7000 bees) were fed imidacloprid (0, 10, 20, 50, and 100 ppb) in syrup for three weeks. We found adverse effects of imidacloprid on queens (egg-laying and locomotor activity), worker bees (foraging and hygienic activities), and colony development (brood production and pollen stores) in all treated colonies. Some effects were less evident as colony sizeincreased, suggesting that larger colony populations may act as a buffer to pesticide exposure. This study is the first to show adverse effects of imidacloprid on queen bee fecundity and behavior and improves our understanding of how neonicotinoids may impair short-term colony functioning. These data indicate that risk-mitigation efforts should focus on reducing neonicotinoid exposure in the early spring when colonies are smallest and queens are most vulnerable to exposure.

Study Type : Insect Study
Additional Links
Additional Keywords : Honeybee : CK(4) : AC(2)
Problem Substances : Pesticides : CK(827) : AC(95)

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