Considerable public and scientific interest has been generated around declines in honeybee and other pollinator populations around the world. A number of factors have been identified as possible contributors to the decline in pollinator numbers, with no single factor being the only cause. The general consensus is that that multiple factors are contributing to these declines, including loss of food sources and habitat, diseases, viruses and other pests, and pesticide exposure.
It is widely accepted that certain pesticides can pose a direct, acute effect on bees and in order to protect honeybees and other pollinators, national regulators require that pesticide labels specify detailed use directions to reduce the risk of pollinator exposure.
Health Canada’s risk assessment framework for pollinators was developed in cooperation with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and the California Department of Pesticide Regulation. This risk assessment framework and its associated guidelines provide direction as to how the risks posed by pesticides to bees should be assessed and is designed to enhance pollinator protection. The guidance specifies when additional data is required for both new and existing pesticides as well as what additional must be obtained.
Atlantic AgriTech Inc has experience in working on a range of pollinator studies to support these data requirements for honeybees and other pollinator species. Pollinator-related studies conducted by AgriTech include Tier 2 Toxicity testing in enclosed tunnels, as well as manual collection of pollen and nectar from a range of crops for analysis for pesticide residues. Atlantic AgriTech continues to expand its expertise and experience in the area of pollinator risk assessment.