PULLMAN, WA - A recently released study conducted by Washington State University (WSU) found that neonicotinoids (neonics) pose little risk to bees in real-world settings because bees aren’t exposed to enough to cause much harm.
With the cooperation of 92 Washington beekeepers, a team of WSU entomologists studied apiaries in urban, rural and agricultural areas in Washington state. The team collected samples of beebread, or stored pollen, from 149 apiaries across the state.
During the one-year trial, researchers looked at potential honeybee colony exposure to neonics from pollen foraging. Neonic residues were detected in fewer than 5 percent of apiaries in rural and urban landscapes, according to the study.
In addition, the amounts detected were substantially less than what lab-based studies routinely expose honeybees to when examining the potential connection between neonics and pollinator health impacts.