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EPA: Three popular insecticides may harm endangered species

Recently released EPA draft Biological Evaluations find three widely used insecticides are “likely to adversely affect” (LAA) plants and animals that are considered endangered.

As Jon Adamy reports for Farm News Media, EPA evaluated clothianidin (commonly sold as Arena and Belay), imidacloprid (commonly sold as Gaucho and Marathon Admire, Merit, and Premise), and thiamethoxam (commonly sold as Centric, Meridian, Helix XTra, Platinum and Cruiser) to determine whether they may affect one or more species listed under the Endangered Species Act or their designated critical habitats.

Each of the three insecticides are a neonicotinoid used on a variety of crops, turf, and ornamentals, among other residential and commercial indoor and outdoor uses.

Imidacloprid is commonly applied as a seed treatment and is a widely used insecticide in North America. The EPA estimates imidacloprid is applied to 65% of Michigan’s potato acres.

According to the EPA, an LAA determination means that EPA reasonably expects that at least one individual animal or plant, among a variety of listed species, may be exposed to the insecticide at a sufficient level to have an adverse effect.

Source: Michigan Farm News. Full report here
Photo: Michigan State University

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