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Session 2: Pesticides & Other Problems (200-03-26-15)
Research on Impediments to Pollinator Health
Thursday, March 26, 2015, 12:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, MacMillan Auditorium

Bees, butterflies, and beneficial lady beetles are disappearing. What are the various factors contributing to pollinator decline? We will examine the science behind pesticides, viruses and habitat loss. Learn the data on neonicotinoid levels in plants, flowers, soil and water. Explore the effects of pesticides on ecosystem processes, then learn about new Midwest research showing the persistence of neonicitinoids and their potential effects on bees, birds, and beneficial insects. When you leave, you will understand the issue in greater detail and be able to chart a path for pollinator health.

About the presenters

Moderator: Vera Krischik, University of Minnesota Associate Professor and Extension Specialist

12:30 p.m. - 12:40 p.m.
Welcome and Opening Remarks
Tim Kenny, Minnesota Landscape Arboretum Director of Education and Director of the Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Program

12:45 p.m. - 12:55 p.m.
Pollinators, Systemic Insecticides, IPM, and Coevolution
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Vera Krischik, University of Minnesota Associate Professor and Extension Specialist
Insects coevolved with plants to feed on pollen and nectar in flowering plants for 140 million years. Without insects the diversity, color, and shape of flowers would not have evolved. Learn the role of insects in flower morphology and leaf chemistry. Adding toxins to pollen and nectar can only cause issues.

1:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Seed Treatments and Potential Impacts on Pollinators view presentation
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Bob Koch, University of Minnesota Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist
This presentation will address current use of neonicotinoid seed treatments in agriculture, with a focus on soybean production. Topics will include how these treatments work, when/where it makes sense to use them for pest management, why widespread prophylactic use doesn't make sense, and potential non-target impacts of these treatments.

1:40 p.m. - 2:10 p.m.
Widespread Occurrence of Neonicotinoid Insecticides in Streams Across the United States
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Dana Kolpin, USGS,Research Hydrologist, U.S. Geological Survey,Iowa City, IA
Michelle L. Hladik, U.S. Geological Survey, California Water Science Center, Sacramento, CA

Neonicotinoid insecticides are of environmental concern, but little is known about their occurrence in surface water. Sampling by the U.S. Geological Survey has documented that neonicotinoids are frequently detected in streams across the United States, with transport driven by use and precipitation. Neonicotinoid stream concentrations have been observed to exceed chronic and, at times, even acute aquatic toxicity levels. More research is needed to understand potential environmental effects of neonicotinoid exposures in streams.

2:20 p.m. - 2:40 p.m. BREAK

2:40 p.m. - 3:10 p.m.
Residues in Crops, Trees, Flowers, Soils, and Effects on Soil Invertebrates and Pollinators
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Vera Krischik,University of Minnesota Associate Professor and Extension Specialist
The dose makes the poison. How much is used in crop protection results in different residues in agriculture fields, landscapes, flower pots, and trees.

3:20 p.m. - 4:05 p.m.
What's On My Food? Pesticide Food Residues 101 and Tools for Learning More
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Lex Horan, Pesticide Action Network of North America (PANNA)
Pesticide residues are found on the food we eat - we know that much for sure. But the laws that govern pesticide residues in the U.S. are well behind much of the industrialized world and don't account for how we are actually exposed to pesticides in our food. This presentation will discuss how chemicals interact with each other synergistically, how long-term exposure to pesticide residues can impact our health, and show participants how to use the tool "What's On My Food."

4:10 p.m. - 4:40 p.m.
Pesticides and Bees and How to Conserve Pollinators
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Marla Spivak, University of Minnesota Extension Entomologist, MacArthur Fellow and Distinguished McKnight Professor
Bees are vital pollinators of our fruits, vegetables, flowers and seed crops, and it is critical that we support their health and diversity. There are two easy steps we all can take to help pollinators: Plant bee-friendly flowers, and make sure those flowers are not contaminated with pesticides. We all want good, clean food; so do our bees.
Certificate of Attendance will be available for Master Gardeners, Master Naturalists, or others who wish to verify their participation.