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  • Learn to Keep Insects Out of your Crops
  • Driving Near Recently Sprayed Fields Exposes People to Pesticides
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  • Weeds Can Be Managed Without Chemical Pesticides

Latest News...

Friday, October 4, 2019

Meet pesticides, the silent bird killers that protect our crops

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Meet pesticides, the silent bird killers that protect our crops (BirdLife International, 9 February 2016)
An article that is still very relevant. Story from Europe and SE Asia. special pesticides called avicides have been developed especially to kill problem birds, they get poisoned from eating treated seeds, many raptors get poisoned from eating poisoned carcasses for other predators such as coyotes.
Refers to one study from the Convention on Migratory Species (2014) estimating that pesticides accidentally kill between 0.25 and 8.9 birds per hectare of agricultural area each year. 

filed under wildlife/birds
 

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Glyphosate can trigger aggressive breast cancer when combined with another risk factor

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Glyphosate can trigger aggressive breast cancer when combined with another risk factor

(GM Watch,  01 October 2019) 'The new study shows that a very low concentration of glyphosate (in the parts per trillion range and thus environmentally relevant for everyone) can trigger breast cancer when combined with another risk factor.

Normally when the DNA of a gene is tagged by methylation, it is not expressed. When the methylation tags are removed, the gene can be reactivated. Such changes in gene function caused by alterations in the profile of DNA methylation tags are known to be a contributing factor to cancer formation (carcinogenesis).

This appears to have been the case in this study, as when a second cancer-inducing agent was combined with the glyphosate, this led to the transformation of the human breast cells to a cancerous state.

The second cancer-inducing agent was a class of small RNA molecules known as microRNA, which are involved in the regulation of gene expression...micro-RNA182-5p is a naturally occurring gene regulatory molecule that is present in everyone. Dysfunction of microRNA182-5p has been linked with cancers of different types.

She (Sophie Lelievre) said, “What was particularly alarming about the tumour growth was that it wasn’t the usual type of breast cancer we see in older women. It was the more aggressive form found in younger women, also known as luminal B cancer.”

filed under cancer/links between individual chemicals....

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Are Neonicotinoids really just the new DDT?

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Are Neonicotinoids really just the new DDT?  (by Stephen Leahy, DecafNation, Jan 15, 2019)

'In a new study published in the science journal Nature, Dutch researchers linked the steady decline of warblers, skylarks, sparrows, and starlings and other birds to the introduction of imidacloprid, the most commonly used neonicotinoid, in the late 1990s. Regions with the heaviest levels of this nerve poison in soil and water had the biggest declines in bird numbers that eat and rely on insects during the breeding season.'

“Instead of wiping out the top of the food chain, killing hawks and eagles as DDT did, neonics are wiping out the bottom of the food chain,” says Hendrickson. 

plus Canadian product names and statistics, quotes from more studies and regulations.

filed under wildlife/birds

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Common Fungicides’ Use Leads to Algae Blooms

The agricultural fungicides tebuconazole and azoxystrobin were tested

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Common Fungicides’ Use Leads to Algae Blooms

(Beyond Pesticides, October 1, 2019) ...'real world complexities as described in the current study are not reviewed ( by regulatory agencies). This gap in our assessment can lead to significant adverse effects not just on individual species, but entire ecosystems....The agricultural fungicides tebuconazole and azoxystrobin were tested. These results indicate that use of the fungicide may be facilitating harmful algae blooms by suppressing fungal pathogens that may otherwise control their growth...There is a need not only to consider the issue raised by the current study, but the wide ranging indirect impacts of pesticide use.'

filed under wildlife/aquatic organisms

Monday, September 30, 2019

New neuroimaging testing shows how prenatal exposure to organophosphate pesticides changes the development of children’s brains

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New neuroimaging testing shows how prenatal exposure to organophosphate pesticides changes the development of children’s brains

(The Organic Center, Sep 23, 2019) . OP (Organophosphate) exposure was associated with altered brain activation during tasks of executive function. For example, with a 10-fold increase in total OP pesticide use within 1 km of maternal residence during pregnancy, there was a bilateral decrease in brain activation in the prefrontal cortex during a cognitive flexibility task. We also found that prenatal OP exposure was associated with sex differences in brain activation during a language comprehension task. This first functional neuroimaging study of prenatal OP exposure suggests that pesticides may impact cortical brain activation, which could underlie previously reported OP-related associations with cognitive and behavioral function.

filed under children

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Endangered Species new page

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 wildlife/ Endangered Species

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Endangered Wildlife Are Getting Dosed With Rat Poisons

Products marketed to kill rodents are instead threatening the lives of the wildlife that eat them as poisons travel up the food chain.

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Endangered Wildlife Are Getting Dosed With Rat Poisons

Products marketed to kill rodents are instead threatening the lives of the wildlife that eat them as poisons travel up the food chain. ( by Tara Lohan, The Revelator, 25 February, 2019)

California story but it could be the one of many states. your marihuana use may be responsible for poisoning animals.

'And in most cases, poisons simply aren’t needed to solve a problem, they’re just easier. “I’m amazed at just how quickly people jump to poison as a solution to a nuisance problem,” she says.'

We do sell rodenticides in Canada including at least the first and second generation ones. I believe many are labeled for domestic use meaning they can be purchased and used by anyone. Since the SaskParty was re-elected they made rodenticides legal and available to farmers in some districts for 'gopher' control. The City of Regina and Wascana are using some in indoor facilities for mice and outdoors for 'gophers' (Richardson ground squirrel). The City apparently uses rodenticides responsibly in springtime by setting it inside burrows and removing dead animals every day although I don't know what they do with them (the dump? although there seems to be little evidence of gull or raven mortality). Wascana has banned use by the public on their property (i.e.for instance the community garden) with good reason as some people used them inappropriately and dogs were poisoned. I am sure some wildlife is poisoned by rodenticides in SK, but don't have numbers. perhaps Jan Shadick can help with an answer. Any research in SK is hampered by the lack of pesticide sales data.
I don't have a page on rodenticides in particular but they are by no means the only pesticides affecting wildlife, pets or people.

filed under wildlife Endangered Species

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Glyphosate decreases mycorrhizal colonization and affects plant-soil feedback

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Glyphosate decreases mycorrhizal colonization and affects plant-soil feedback (

(Marjo Helander et al, Science of The Total Environment,Volume 642, 15 November 2018, Pages 285-291)

Highlights

  • •In northern ecosystems glyphosate residues are detected in crop plants the following growing season.
  • • Arbuscular mycorrhizal colonization is decreased in glyphosate treated plants.
  • •The magnitude of mycorrhizal reduction is dependent on tilling and soil history.

filed under glyphosate

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Fall is Here, and It’s a Great Time to Transition Your Lawn to Organic

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Saturday, September 21, 2019

Mosquito fumigation may have caused mystery Havana syndrome, study says

Trump administration had charged that cognitive ailments of Canadian and US diplomats were caused by use of a secret weapon

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Mosquito fumigation may have caused mystery 'Havana syndrome', study says

Trump administration had charged that cognitive ailments of Canadian and US diplomats were caused by use of a secret weapon (BBC News, 20 September 2019)

 'The patterns of brain injury "all raise the hypothesis of recurrent, low-dose exposure to neurotoxins", the report said. Specifically, the results were "highly suggestive" of something called cholinesterase inhibitor intoxication...The study notes that tests carried out on 28 participants - seven of whom were tested both before and after being posted to Havana - support a diagnosis of brain injury acquired by diplomats and their families while in Cuba.

Unnamed pesticide in the story, likely an organophosphate because of the mode of action. I would like to add that this is not the first time people get sick from fumigation oversees. Many tourists came back from Cuba with neurological symptoms related to mosquito fumigation which apparently occurred nightly in touristy areas. Other tourists sickened and some died when hotel rooms or other accommodations have been fumigated. In many tourist destinations, the fact is that there are still many more acutely toxic pesticides registered, and very little oversight. Not that we have much oversight here in SK, with 1 PMRA and 1 provincial inspectors for 33-36% of Canadian pesticide applications...And more coverage by the Guardian- no new information. 

see also Mysterious “Havana syndrome” Linked to Neurotoxic Pesticide Exposure (Beyond Pesticides, September 24, 2019) SNAP comment: This article finally address the unaswered questions. '“There are very specific types of toxins that affect these kinds of nervous systems … and these are insecticides, pesticides, organophosphates — specific neurotoxins,” said Dr. Friedman. “So that’s why we generated the hypothesis that we then went to test in other ways.”Mass spectrometry tests found the presence of cholinesterase-inhibiting insecticides including Temephos, an organophosphate, as well as pyrethroids... The report found a correlation between individuals with strongest symptoms and the number of fumigations conducted at their residence.'

filed under pesticide poisonings/individual cases and pesticide exposure