Bibliography Tag: invertebrate toxicity

Pelosi et al., 2021

C. Pelosi, C. Bertrand, G. Daniele, M. Coeurdassier, P. Benoit, S. Nélieu, F. Lafay, V. Bretagnolle, S. Gaba, E. Vulliet, C. Fritsch.; “Residues of currently used pesticides in soils and earthworms: A silent threat?;” Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, 2021, 305; DOI: 10.1016/j.agee.2020.107167.


Critical knowledge gaps about environmental fate and unintentional effects of currently used pesticides (CUPs) hamper the understanding and mitigation of their global impacts on ecological processes. We investigated the exposure of earthworms to 31 multiclass CUPs in an arable landscape in France. We highlighted the presence of at least one pesticide in all soils (n = 180) and 92 % of earthworms (n = 155) both in treated crops and nontreated habitats (hedgerows, grasslands, and cereals under organic farming). Mixtures of at least one insecticide, one herbicide, and one fungicide (> limit of quantification) contaminated 90 % of soils and 54 % of earthworms at levels that could endanger these nontarget beneficial soil organisms. A high risk of chronic toxicity to earthworms was found (46 % of samples) both in treated winter cereals and nontreated habitats considered as refuges. This may alter biodiversity, hinder recovery, and impair ecosystem functions. These results provide essential insights for sustainable agriculture and CUP regulation, and highlight the potential of pesticides as agents of global change. FULL TEXT

Schulz et al., 2021

Schulz R, Bub S, Petschick LL, Stehle S, Wolfram J.; “Applied pesticide toxicity shifts toward plants and invertebrates, even in GM crops;” Science, 2021, 2;372(6537):81-84; DOI: 10.1126/science.abe1148.


Pesticide impacts are usually discussed in the context of applied amounts while disregarding the large but environmentally relevant variations in substance-specific toxicity. Here, we systemically interpret changes in the use of 381 pesticides over 25 years by considering 1591 substance-specific acute toxicity threshold values for eight nontarget species groups. We find that the toxicity of applied insecticides to aquatic invertebrates and pollinators has increased considerably-in sharp contrast to the applied amount-and that this increase has been driven by highly toxic pyrethroids and neonicotinoids, respectively. We also report increasing applied toxicity to aquatic invertebrates and pollinators in genetically modified (GM) corn and to terrestrial plants in herbicide-tolerant soybeans since approximately 2010. Our results challenge the claims of a decrease in the environmental impacts of pesticide use.