A Letter to the Editor

“After being questioned by a beekeeper who apparently likes to keep a colorful pristine yard, The BBB needs to mention briefly about not purchasing neonics treated plants as precautionary and why. I know a wholesale nursery that voluntarily switched over because of the detrimental effects on pollinators. There is some research to back if necessary.”

Neonics refers to neonicotinoids which are a type of pesticide used to treat various plants to protect them from insects that might feed on them. For more detailed information on these pesticides I refer the reader to Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neonicotinoid).  In a nutshell, Wikipedia states:

Neonicotinoids (sometimes shortened to neonics /ˈniːoʊnɪks/) are a class of neuro-active insecticides chemically similar to nicotine. In the 1980s Shell and in the 1990s Bayer started work on their development.[1] The neonicotinoid family includes acetamiprid, clothianidin, imidacloprid, nitenpyram, nithiazine, thiacloprid and thiamethoxam. Imidacloprid is the most widely used insecticide in the world.[2] Compared to organophosphate and carbamate insecticides, neonicotinoids cause less toxicity in birds and mammals than insects. Some breakdown products are also toxic to insects.[3]

In the late 1990s neonicotinoids came under increasing scrutiny over their environmental impact.[4] Neonicotinoid use was linked in a range of studies to adverse ecological effects, including honey-bee colony collapse disorder (CCD) and loss of birds due to a reduction in insect populations; however, the findings have been controversial.[5] In 2013, the European Union and a few non EU countries restricted the use of certain neonicotinoids.[6][7][8]

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