Changing Pesticide Use: Challenges for Water-Quality Monitoring and Ecological Implications


Just to start, I always wanna clarify with
some terminology about, “What is a pesticide?” Sometimes people think pesticides equal just
insecticides, but really it’s this umbrella term that includes anything that you would
like to get rid of. So we have insecticides, fungicides, herbicides,
rodenticides. There’s a whole host of different types of
pesticides and insecticides are just one group of those. And today, I am going to focus on insecticides. So a little bit about changing pesticide use. It’s constant. There are always new compounds being introduced
onto the market. There can also be changing pest types or pressures
that would cause someone to wanna use a different type of pesticide or perhaps there is resistance
to current pesticides being applied, so another one might be useful in that situation. Other things that might change which pesticides
are being applied in an area could be restrictions. There could be concerns on previously used
compounds, and those could then have limits on where they’re applied, or sometimes even
an outright ban. There can also be changes in crop types. This can really change what types of pesticides
could be used. One of the examples I use, is that in California
there used to be quite a bit of cotton, but as there was more of a demand for almonds,
especially in emerging markets in Asia, farmers started converting their cotton fields to
almonds. And as you can imagine, this just changes
the whole type of crop being grown, which will also change what types of pesticides
are applied, when they’re applied, etcetera. There’s other examples of that. Or you can take a different type of example. As ethanol prices went up and it was more
profitable to grow corn, there were certain areas that were more margins, that they actually
started growing in corn. So it wasn’t a crop change as much, as just
more of, say a particular crop. And then more recently, we’ve seen a change
in application techniques. People typically think of pesticide applications
as granulars or sprays, but one of the things I wanna focus on today is this more prevalence
of seed coatings and I’m gonna talk about why seed coatings have been increasing in
use. As I said, today I’m gonna focus on insecticides. I just wanna give a timeline. I’m gonna come back to this timeline a bit,
just how this is a generalization, as insecticide use has changed over the years. If you wanna think of the poster child for
synthetic pesticides, is probably DDT, that came about in a post-World War II industrial
era. And of course, later on, we discovered it
had problems. It got banned. If we wanna go to more of the recent past,
if you wanna look in the ’90s, the organophosphates, such as chlorpyrifos and diazinon were widely
used, but as there were concerns over them, especially to mammals and in aquatic systems,
there was a shift to the pyrethroid insecticides. A couple examples of those are bifenthrin
and permethrin. But then, not only were there concerns about
potential pyrethroid issues, but the neonicotinoids really came onto the market and they could
be used in a different application method. And so those are some of the more recent insecticides
that have started being used. Now, there’s a chance you’ve heard about neonicotinoids. A lot of the reason they’ve been in the news,
is when they started to be used more prevalently, they were implicated in the colony collapse
disorder of honeybees. I’m not gonna talk about the honeybee issues. It’s a very complex matter. There’s many factors that could be contributing
to it, but this is really how neonicotinoids came on the radar and really started coming
into the popular media. They could also have risks to other pollinators
and that sort of thing. If you’ve heard about ’em, this is probably
one of the major reasons why. But why are the neonicotinoids so popular? Why is this their sudden increase in use and
just different types of use? Currently, as a class, they are the most widely
used insecticides in the world. They have home uses, so they’re included in
pet flea treatments. You can find them in lawn and garden applications. They have a bunch of agricultural uses, granular
foliar sprays and seed treatments, so they have a wide variety of, not just ag uses,
but also those found in urban areas. Structurally, they’re similar to nicotine,
which is how they get their name, the neonicotinoids, and these are neurotoxins to insects. Another reason for their popularity is they’re
active against a broad spectrum of insects, so you can use ’em for many different pest
pressures. And one of the reasons why the neonics were
first thought of as a good alternative, is that they are less toxic to vertebrates, such
as mammals, versus other things that have been used in the past, such as those organophosphates,
chlorpyrifos, and diazinon. Coming back to this merging of neonicotinoids,
which are a newer class of insecticides, and this whole seed coating, seed treatment thing. Neonicotinoids are unique in that they’re
what they call systemic pesticides, which means they can actually be taken up by the
plant. They’re highly water soluble and so that means
they can actually be taken up through water, in through the plant roots, up into the leaves,
the pollen, the flowers. And so, by having any seeds you might wanna
plant coated with these pesticides, this is what they look at as a target application,
something that is touted as precision agriculture. So instead of having to spray a broad area,
like a corn field, with a pesticide, where you can get drift, and over spray, and those
sorts of things, now you have a targeted application, where it’s only on the seed. In around 2000, clothianidin and thiamethoxam
entered the markets. Imidacloprid had been used before then. Anyway, this is about the time that seed treatments
really become more common. we’ll look in pounds. But it’s increased in use greatly and a lot
of this was from seed coatings. At this point, in the US, nearly all of corn
and about a third of soybeans planted today use a neonicotinoid. I will also note that in these seed coatings,
it’s not just the neonicotinoids, it can also include one to five fungicides, so you’re
getting more than just one type of pesticide on these seed treatments. To talk a little bit more about the environmental
state of the neonicotinoids… And on there is a cartoon of how the neonics
can be transported into the environment. As I said, these are highly water soluble
compounds, and as you can see in the diagram, they show that they can be taken up by plants
into the leaves, and flowers, and pollen, and that’s where a lot of the pollinator concerns
come from. Are these and other pollinators landing on
these plants and maybe becoming exposed to these neonicotinoids through the pollen? But because these compounds are water soluble,
they’re able to be mobile. They also can persist for enough time that
they can be transported offsite. They’ve estimated about 10% is taken up by
the plant. These seed coatings, I see numbers anywhere
from 2% to 20%, so if you think of that other mass of the neonicotinoid that’s on the seed
coating, that’s not taken up by the plant, it can be in the soil, and because these are
water soluble compounds, if you get any irrigation or rain event, you can start getting them
transported from the application area through the water, either to nearby streams or to
groundwater, and then they can get out into the greater environment. And this is what I’m really interested in,
this sort of aquatic water exposure. I would wanna just take a step back again
to our timeline that I brought up earlier, and not only are we dealing with this changing
pesticide use, just from new compounds, and trying to keep up with those, and maybe having
to come up with new analytical techniques to measure them, we also are seeing a change
in the environmental state. And that’s really gonna drive where we should
be looking for these compounds, where they might go in the environment. If you wanna go back to the organophosphates,
they actually tended to partition in both the water and the sediment, so you could find
them in both matrices, whereas when there was a change to the pyrethroids, these are
highly hydrophobic compounds, and so they tended to bind to sediments and soils. They would move offsite more associated with
these, and so there was more of a concern with toxicity to benthic organisms and such. Now, as we’ve shifted to the neonicotinoids,
as I said, they’re highly water soluble, so now you’ve changed it again. And so, instead of the pyrethroids, where
you had a potential sediment issue, you can get these neonicotinoids that are gonna be
more dissolved. They’re gonna have a greater chance to move
offsite through the water, and also, they’re gonna be exposing organisms that actually
live in the water column, more than those that are in the benthos. So just, once again, to look at neonicotinoid
use in the US and how it’s been changing. Once again, I’m showing on the right, usage
for three of the most commonly used neonics and these are the ones I’m gonna talk about
mostly for the rest… Or I’m gonna highlight, in the rest of the
slides. So you have imidacloprid, the neonic that’s
been used the longest, it’s got a variety of uses, as you can see. Recently with seed coatings, a lot of it is
on soybeans. And then you have clothianidin, which is almost
used exclusively on corn, seed coatings for corn, although there are some other uses,
and more, and more are coming onto the market. And then you have thiamethoxam, which is used
on corn, and soy, and other pesticides. And while a lot of these are driven by seed
coatings, as I said, they can be done as granular applications, foliar sprays, drenches. They do have a variety of uses. If you wanna look at the areas in the US where
neonic use is the highest, because these are so widely used on corn and soy, you can see
that the Midwest is the hot spot for their use, but you do have other areas where they
are also used. And imidacloprid, which has the most variety
of uses, is used in quite a few places around the US. As I said, I’m really interested in this aquatic
transport, this water transport of these insecticides from where they’re applied, and what concentrations
will we be seeing in the water? Are we seeing them? How far are they moving from the site of application? Initially, the first thought was that, “Well,
they may not be taken up all by the plant, but it’s this precision agricultured seed
coatings, so would we actually be finding them in our streams and waterways?” So in 2013, we did one of our first studies
and we targeted Iowa. As you can see, it’s kind of the ground zero
for high neonicotinoid use, because of the amount of corn and soy grown in the area and
we did detect neonicotinoids frequently in this area. And if you can see the figure on the bottom
right, it shows samples we collected at, I think, nine stream locations throughout the
growing season. And you can look at frequencies and concentration,
but I would like to highlight that the highest concentrations and most frequent detections
happened during planting. Before planting, we did get some detections,
but concentrations were relatively low. We got this bigger pulse during planting,
and then that tended to tail off as we went throughout the growing season. So what that was indicating to us, is that
these are likely coming from… If they’re coming during the planting season,
those are from seed coatings… This was sort of the first study to document
that there’s the potential of these seed coatings to create a pulse of insecticides in waterways
near areas of application. I would also like to highlight, a pulse seen
in the spring near the time of planting is not unheard of for things like herbicides. If you’re familiar with atrazine, a lot of
times it’s seen as this sort of pulse, because it’s applied as a pre-emergent herbicide,
and then as you get any irrigation or rain events, you can see it run off, and you get
this peak in spring, and then it tails off. However, this has not been seen before with
insecticides. Typically, in insecticide monitoring, detections
were rather infrequent or sporadic, and tended to happen later in summer. But now with this change in use, we’re getting
this spring pulse that we had previously seen with herbicides. So this is just taking one of our sites and
getting a more fine detail from this 2013 Iowa study, and as I said, it just shows you
more about this, what we call this ‘spring flush phenomenon’. So that grayed out area is the planting season. And as you can see, not only do you need the
seeds to be planted, but you also need a pulse of water, so that’s shown by those blue discharge
lines. So whenever we were getting a storm event
and we were able to go out and take a sample, we were actually seeing increased concentrations,
which is just reiterating, not only do you need these compounds to be in the area, but
you need rain, because they’re highly water soluble, to start moving them. Our Iowa study documented this occurrence
of neonicotinoids, but we wanted to get a greater spatial analysis of which neonicotinoids
we might be detecting across the country, so this was a nationwide study. It was part of a much larger study looking
at other compounds, but I’m just gonna focus on the neonicotinoids here. We looked at 38 streams in a variety of states,
you can see them on the map. And this was a one-time sampling event at
each of these sites, so we don’t have the temporal variability that we do at those sites
we had in Iowa, but this is gonna give us a better geographic distribution. I will say one or more neonicotinoid was detected
in over half of our samples, and then a quarter of them had two or more, and we had up to
five neonicotinoids detected in one sample. I will note that we measure six. Those are kind of the six that are registered
and most frequently used in the US. Looking at concentrations, on the bottom right,
you can see they were all on this scale, so we’re talking 100’s of nanograms per liter
maximum concentration for these, and you do get some variability. But even nationwide, we detected three imidacloprid,
clothianidin, and thiamethoxam, were the most frequent detected, which were the three that
were also frequently detected in our Iowa study. We have less frequent hits of two other ones,
Dinotefuran and Acetamiprid. Those tend to be used not for seed coatings,
they have different uses, some are urban sprays and that sort of thing, so we tend to detect
them less frequently. We also did some relationships with land cover
at the sites we measured and we found that both clothianidin and thiamethoxam had positive
correlations with the amount of row crops in the area, in the watershed around where
the sample was collected, which is not unexpected, considering these are commonly used as seed
coatings, especially in corn and soy, so a positive correlation with row crops is expected. With imidacloprid, we got a positive correlation
with the amount of urbanization in the area, and as I said, imidacloprid has a wide variety
of uses, but it is also frequently used in urban areas. To look at the distribution from our nationwide
study on a site by site basis… I don’t have the sites listed by their actual
site. They’re just given a number, but what I wanted
to point out here, is that concentrations at a given site do vary and you can see those
ones, where they’re… The sites where we have multiple neonicotinoids
that we measured. I do like to point out, the one site we had
five neonicotinoids measured, that was also the maximum total neonicotinic concentration
that we had measured at this point, and at this point, I do like to note that a lot of
these studies we are doing were in streams, and rivers, and not edge of ag field, so people
that have done studies right at the edge of an ag field have found higher concentrations,
but the 100’s of nanograms per liter is more typical of what we’re finding in some of our
larger waterways. And so yes, so we had one site that was off
the central coast of California that had five neonics detected. If you’re at all familiar with this area,
it’s got a lot of diverse agriculture. You’ve got strawberries, and brussel sprouts,
and raspberries, and artichokes, and all sorts of non-corn and soy agriculture, so with this
variety of agriculture, usually comes a wider variety of pesticides used. Now, just looking at an overall detection
frequency basis, we’ve done a bunch of other studies, where we’ve looked at a lot of pesticides
and neonics were included, or we did some more neonic-focused studies, other than the
two I’m highlighting in this talk. But what I did was aggregate all the water
samples that we’ve sort of collected to date, and we had about 216 ag samples, and about
160 urban samples. And just looking at detection frequency, you
can get these trends that I had noted from our nationwide study. This just gives more data points to support
them. Imidacloprid is the most frequently detected
neonicotinoid in all our water samples and it’s detected quite frequently in over 80%
of urban areas, but it is also detected in about 40% of agricultural areas. Clothianidin and thiamethoxam, those that
are widely used on seed coatings in corn and soy, are more frequently detected in the agricultural
areas. And Dinotefuran and Acetamiprid, I said those
that aren’t used as seed coatings, just less use overall, so we have lower detections,
somewhat more for Dinotefuran in urban areas. They’ve been spraying them on trees for certain
pest issues in different areas of the country, but we also see them in some agricultural
areas. Once again, we’re gonna go back to our timeline. We’ve talked about changing pesticide use,
how this changes the environmental state, and of course, this can also change the toxicity
and what organisms might be affected by these pesticides. So at this… I’m gonna talk about more organisms in the
next couple slides, but here I wanna just focus on… These are some of the test species that are
done in lab toxicity tests. So when looking at the organophosphates, Ceriodaphnia
was sort of the most… Or the Daphnia were the most sensitive to
organophosphates, whereas when you switch to pyrethroids… So they’re a hydrophobic benthic organism. You have Hyalella azteca, and that was the
most sensitive organism. Shifting over to the neonicotinoids, things
such as Hyalella are actually quite… It takes much larger concentrations of neonicotinoids
to get any sort of effect. They don’t really have it, but the picture
I’m showing there is of a Chironomus dilutus midge, which is a different test species and
those are very susceptible at lower concentrations to neonicotinoids. So we also have to consider that when we’re
trying to look at, not only where are we finding these compounds, but what might the potential
affects be? If you’re only ever using one test species
for your, say, toxicity lab tests, as this test site use changes, you might not be getting
the full picture. So, here, I’ve taken all the concentrations
that we’ve measured in all our samples and I just wanted to plot them against the, “So
what?” Versus some of these toxicity levels. Now, the first ones I’d like to discuss are
the US EPA Aquatic Life Benchmarks, the ones that are currently out. So you’ll see at the top of the figures… And I have these separated by ag and urban
areas… The EPA acute toxicity level for any of these
compounds is above the figure here, so none of the concentrations that we’ve measured
in any of our studies would be above that current EPA acute toxicity level. If you drop it down to the EPA chronic toxicity
level, we’ve had a few samples in agricultural areas exceed this aquatic life benchmark. Now, there’s been a host of other literature
that indicates that maybe these US EPA Aquatic Life Benchmarks are not sensitive enough. I talked about some of the species that might
be more sensitive and part of it is that, in some of these standardized EPA test species,
some of these are the least sensitive to the neonicotinoids, but that doesn’t mean in an
actual aquatic system that other species may not be affected by these. So I just wanted to note there was a metadata
analysis done by Christy Morrissey, that was published in 2015, and there are some other
studies, but that have all come out with similar chronic and acute toxicity levels. So if you wanna use those from the Morrissey
paper, if you look at acute toxicity in ag areas… And one urban sample, we’re actually exceeding
what they might suggest as an acute toxicity level. I will note they vary slightly from neonic
to neonic, but I’m just trying to use this for illustrative purposes. And for the chronic toxicity level, we’re
starting to get many more samples in both ag and urban areas. It could be a potential concern in these aquatic
environments. I would also like to note that the EPA did
release… This year in January, they did a preliminary
risk assessment for imidacloprid, so it was trying to update some of those numbers. And in their preliminary risk assessment,
they did come up with a lower acute and chronic level, that had… They’re lower than their previous aquatic
life benchmarks and they’re more in the range of some of these other studies, although they’re
not so it will be interesting to see, once that’s actually finished. I will note that imidacloprid is typically
considered the most toxic neonic to most of these aquatics species. But this just puts all the concentrations
that we’ve measured into some sort of toxicity context, because a lot of times, with improved
analytical methods and instrumentation, just because we can measure something doesn’t necessarily
mean it can be an issue. But as more data comes out on these compounds
and there’s more of a consensus on chronic and acute toxicity levels, we’re starting
to see areas that might be of potential concern. So to kinda look as this whole neonic in our
US waterways, we know they dissolve in water, we know they can move away from the application
area. We know that there are levels that could potentially
affect aquatic insects, things like mayflies and caddisflies are very sensitive to these
insecticides, and that can also have an indirect effect. If these insect populations are low, that
could potentially affect things such as birds, and so I wanna go more into that whole direct
versus indirect effects and how we look at those. If you wanna take birds as an example, and
if you think of neonics being directly toxic to birds, based on our pesticide use, the
acute toxicity of neonics in birds, is lower than the pesticides that were replaced. Of course, this varies by species. But then again, if you look at this treated
seed aspect, there have been studies that have noted that one treated seed could potentially
poison a bird or that even 1/10th of this treated seed can have a reproductive effect. This would be a bird eats a neonic treated
seed and that would be your direct effect, and while this can happen… Although, there’s some research done that
if birds are on fields, if they have another option, they tend to avoid these coated seeds. You might have seen the previous picture,
that they’re colored to let people know, and that might be why some of the birds potentially
could stay away, but they could directly eat these seeds. Sort of a bigger question that has come up
are these indirect effects. These neonicotinoids enter aquatic systems. They could be toxic to, as I said, mayflies,
caddisflies, midges, and then that could decrease the insect population. And a lot of… There are insectivorous birds, and so this
could really have an indirect effect on them. But indirect effects are a little bit harder
to determine than these direct effects. You have multiple factors going on and it
becomes more complicated. This is what I always like to call my, “Let’s
look at cute animals, take a break,” [chuckle] but one of the major concerns we have with
the neonics is, are they affecting these aquatic insects? Now, I always talk about, on just trying to
get attention and to get people to care about this potential issue, especially the greater
public. If you can always relate this to, what I call,
charismatic megafauna, something cute and fuzzy, and preferably mammalian, people get
really interested. That’s not what these neonics, a lot of their
potential concerns are. Then I always talk about species people care
about. They may not be as soft and fuzzy, but they
have big implications. Water fowl hunters are really into what’s
going on with ducks, salmon, birds, butterflies, things that people think are pretty or that
have a large industry behind them. And then, there’s the, what I call the less
charismatic things, so are they small fish, like a Delta smelt, or an amphibian, or just
insects? A lot of people are like, “Why do I care that
there’s potentially less insects?” So you have to really drive home that it has
these ripple affects, especially for things like ducks. A lot of water fowl hunters are very concerned,
if you’re gonna tell them that their mayfly and caddisfly populations going down, because
that’s what their ducks are eating. Its just sometimes setting the context. And so, as there’s more people trying to look
at these indirect effects, especially as it relates to neonics, insects, and birds… There was one study that correlated imidacloprid
concentrations in surface waters with reduced bird populations. It was in 16 of the 15 bird species they looked
at, so not all birds. I was part of a group that tried to just look
at… We correlated neonicotinoid use with decreasing
populations in butterflies, and we found it to be more severe for some of the smaller
butterflies. We did look at other changes in other pesticide
use classes, such as the pyrethroids and didn’t get any correlation, but I will note, one
of these things is just because we’re getting a correlation, does not actually give us a
causation. What would be really great is if we had more
surveys of what insect populations were for some of these birds that eat them and what
we don’t have is that, but people are trying to work more on these effects and really get
at the heart of ’em, to figure out where neonicotinoids fit into this equation. Just to give an update on neonicotinoid use
overall. So come back to this precision agriculture,
and these coating of seeds, and using… If you do the calculations, having a seed
coating will give you less active ingredient in a certain area than a broad application,
like say a spray application. However, now they’re getting near 100% usage,
say, on corn, and so you’re actually getting a more total application of these neonics
than you were. So when you coat them on the seed, you’re
planting them, they’re already there, versus in the past, where there may have been only
application when it was deemed necessary, because of a pest pressure. The EPA did a study where they found soy bean
treated fields did not have an increased use from this prophylactic application. However, there are other studies and this
also seems to be variable by crops, so maybe with soy beans, we weren’t getting any increase
shield with these seed coatings, but in England, they found with oilseed rape, that seed treatments
led to less foliar applications, but then in sunflowers, they saw no increase, and so
it’s one of these things that could vary by crop, so this may not just be a blanket statement
about seed coatings overall, and it could be highly variable with crops, especially
if you have crops that… There are some that if you go in there and
notice a pest, you can then go back and apply what insecticide you think is necessary, versus
others, it’s by the time you see, say, a certain insect, your crop’s done. It’s too late to do any sort of application. The neonics are being phased out of wildlife
refuges. I’m gonna say, alluded to earlier, the EPA
is currently reviewing the neonics and their risk assessments. The EU did a moratorium on the agricultural
use of neonics, and they’re still looking at the data, and what came out of that. In Canada, they’re trying to cut the… In Ontario, they’re trying to cut the use
of neonics over the next three years. Maryland banned the consumer use of neonics. So you can see, there’s different restrictions. Certain areas are doing it on a consumer use
basis, certain areas are doing it on an ag basis, and this is constantly changing, and
I don’t think this is a complete list, but this is just to give you an idea of where
people are at with this whole issue of neonics and seed coatings. Just wanted to note some of the other projects
that we’ve worked on. I had a project with folks at Iowa State University,
where we looked at buffer strips and their potential to reduce neonics. They were planted near ag fields, that these
were fields that had historical use of neonicotinoid coated seeds, and we were actually getting
some good results, and it was limiting the transport in ground water and soil, and we
were not detecting the neonics in the plants, so that’s always a question of, when you plant
something like a buffer strip next to an ag field, for these highly water soluble compounds,
you might be limiting the off-field transport, but you also, with these plants, that you
hope maybe are good for pollinators and such, you also don’t wanna create an area that they’re
coming to, that’s also has pesticides in it. But for our smaller study, we weren’t finding
that. I partnered with some people at the University
of Iowa recently. We did detect neonics in drinking water and
tap water. We had low levels, and this should not be
surprising in this area, given the high ag use, and how much we’re finding in the surface
waters in this area. One of the positive things we found out about
this, is that in the treatment and some bench skill studies, that granular activated carbon
is good at removing these compounds, and in a lot of these areas, especially that have
Atrazine concerns, they do use granular, sort of an activated carbon, and it’s also good
to know that what can be used for Atrazine, could also be potentially useful for the removal
of neonicotinoids. We’re trying to summarize… We did some more currents work in the Great
Lakes tributaries, obviously, areas in high ag use, but also sensitive ecosystems, so
we’re trying to finish up that. And while this was a more water focused talk,
I have done work with native bees, not honeybees, and we’re still trying to continue that and
how neonicotinoids might affect, not just honeybees, but also the whole host of other
bees that might be in this landscape and how they might be affected by them. So just to summarize, we frequently detect
neonics in streams across the US. At this point, we do find areas without any
detections, but be it urban or ag, we are detecting them. Depending on which levels you wanna use for
your acute and chronic toxicity, these levels are being exceeded, and they’re both slightly
having an effect on aquatic invertebrates. The transport of these neonics to streams
is driven by use and precipitation. So, specially, with these seed coatings, not
only do they have to be used, you have to have then, a hydrologic event, usually will
then drive them to nearby waterways. And just in general, seed treatments are increasing
overall. And when I first started this work, it was
mostly corn and soy that were being treated, but now, wheat, rice, barley, peas, a whole… All sorts of… Any seeds planted are getting treated. And as I said, it’s not usually just a neonicotinoid. It’s usually a neonicotinoid, and then one
to five fungicides, which comes to my next point. These were just one class of compounds that
we’re measuring in a waterway. There is not only just other pesticides, such
as herbicides, fungicides, that could also be on these seed coatings, but there’s just
other contaminants. We all know that there’s a complex mixture,
especially in our waterways, pharmaceuticals, metals, or even things like microplastics
could be confounding factors and contributing to this, potential effects in these aquatic
ecosystems. That’s always something to keep in mind and
keep in context. It’s hard to talk about all potential pesticides
in one talk, and the neonics are really increasing, and their use really is, so that’s why I focused
on them, but it’s always good to take a step back and realize there’s this whole mixture
of everything. So with that, before I take questions, I would
really like to thank… I had so many co-authors and so many collaborators
on the stage they presented, but I really always like to give a huge thank you to the
people that actually work in California with me in my lab. They are awesome and they’re really key in
making sure these samples get processed and analyzed in a timely fashion. We’ve really tried to strive to get quick
turnaround time, so that if we need to go somewhere and take another sample, we can. We are a research lab. That’s our goal. That’s one of our charges and we don’t do
as many samples as a lot of labs do, but we really try to focus in on things. But I am lucky to have a fantastic group of
people, that are really trying, just to make sure we have good data, and to ensure that
we’re doing what we can with the neonicotinoids, and a bunch of other studies we’re looking
at. So with that, I’d be happy to take questions.