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A team of researchers affiliated with several institutions in Spain has found neonicotinoids represent an unexplored harmful exposure route to beneficial insects via honeydew. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the group describes their study of beneficial insect exposure to neonicotinoids and what they learned.
Prior research has shown that the application of neonicotinoids, a class of insecticides, to farm plants can harm beneficial insects via pollen. In this new effort, the researchers have found that it can also harm beneficial insects via honeydew.
Honeydew - Liquid - Insects - Mealybugs - Aphids
Honeydew is a sticky liquid produced by insects such as mealybugs, aphids, psyllid and whiteflies, which feed on plant tissue containing sugars. The insects leave the honeydew on plants they visit, and other insects such as pollinating hoverflies and parasitic wasps come by and eat it. In this new effort, the researchers have found that neonicotinoids can wind up in the honeydew, which kills the insects that eat it. The problem is that the insects that consume the tainted honeydew and are killed by it are not the intended...
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