On April 9 the “Neonicotinoids and other insecticides – research and stewardship symposium” was held in Canberra.
Funded by RIRDC, the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority and the Grains Research and Development Corporation, the symposium brought together 90 representatives from the honey bee industry, crop industries that rely on honey bees for pollination, researchers and government agencies to examine information gathered globally on the effects of neonicotinoids on insect pollinators.
WAFarmers Beekeepers Section has supported research into this area via a recent submission. The report resulting from the symposium is important to both beekeepers and grain growers.
The overall message conveyed at the symposium was that neonicotinoids are unlikely to be presenting any greater threat to honey bees and crop pollination than other pesticides that have been used for many years.
The full report and presentations can be found with the following link to the PHA website:
The issue of neonicotinoid use remains controversial. In December 2013 the European Commission suspended the use of neonicotinoid insecticides on flowering crops such as corn, canola sunflowers and cotton. The suspension does not apply to crops that are not attractive to bees or to winter cereals.