Global Wildlife AIDS
Associated With
Neonicotinoid Insecticides

I received the following article from Dr Rosemary Mason and her husband Palle. The article looks at the association between neonicotinoids and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome in wildlife, including honey bees, bumblebees, butterflies, moths, birds, bats and amphibians.

Dr Mason also compiled a summary of the US EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) conditional registration document for Clothianidin. To view it, click here (opens a new window).

A little information about the authors:

Dr Rosemary Mason ChB (Hons), D.Obst. RCOG, FRCA
Consultant Anaesthetist (Anesthesiologist) 25 years.

Author of Anaesthesia Databook; A perioperative and peripartum manual (600 pages) as a practical resource for trained anaesthetists. 1st edn. 1989, 2nd edn. 1994, 3rd edn. 2001; reprinted in 2009.
Assistant Editor of Anaesthesia, Journal of the Association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain and Ireland, 1990 – 2000. Familiar with the neurophysiology of central nervous system, peripheral neuronal receptors and the pharmacology of drugs acting on them.

Palle Uhd Jepsen
Former Senior Adviser in Wildlife Management and Nature Conservation for the Danish Forest and Nature Agency, Ministry of the Environment.

Research on the feeding ecology of goldeneye.
Before his retirement he was a member of the Danish Delegation on the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, International Whaling Commission, Bonn Convention on Migratory Species, ASCOBANS (Agreement on Conservation of Small Cetaceans in the Baltic and North Sea) and Wetlands International.
Adviser on Site Management for International Projects in Thailand, Malaysia, Belarus, Northern Ireland and Estonia.
Author of several books on natural and cultural history in Denmark; also natural history in the Arctic.

Global Wildlife AIDS associated with Neonicotinoid Insecticides
US EPA registration doc for clothianidin confirmed effects on the rat immune system.

Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a condition in humans, caused by a virus, in which untreated patients do not die from the cause of the immune deficiency, but as a result of one or more unusual infections or perhaps tumours, which, in general, normal healthy people would not get, or if they do, complete recovery will be anticipated. In 2011, we are told that it is now treatable, provided the patient can obtain, or afford, antiviral agents.

The AIDS in wildlife which is now upon us, in which massive epidemics of unusual infective pathogens have caused deaths and declines in a variety of wildlife: amphibians, bats, birds, invertebrates (including all pollinators) is caused, not by a virus, but by a chemical. To be precise, a variety of chemicals can cause it; but the main culprits are the neonicotinoid insecticides. Unlike human AIDS, wildlife AIDS it is untreatable. And the chemicals causing it are persistent in the environment.

For the final proof, you have to look no further than the original US EPA document for clothianidin. On May 30, 2003, Daniel C Kenny of the US EPA Registration Division granted conditional registration for clothianidin to be used for seed treatment use on corn and canola (oil seed rape). The EPA scientists had assessed the risks as: Clothianidin is highly toxic to honey bees on an acute contact basis. It has the potential for toxic chronic exposure to honey bees, as well as other non-target pollinators, through the translocation of clothianidin residues in nectar and pollen. In honey bees, the effects of this toxic chronic exposure may include lethal and/or sub-lethal effects in the larvae and reproductive effects in the queen. The fate and disposition of clothianidin in the environment suggest a compound that is a systemic insecticide that is persistent and mobile, stable to hydrolysis, and has potential to leach into ground water, as well as run-off to surface waters. There is evidence of effects on the rat immune system and juvenile rats appear to be more susceptible to these effects.

So, the massive declines in honey bees and other pollinators are just the tip of the iceberg of an AIDS epidemic in wildlife. If these pesticides are not withdrawn immediately, they will destroy the environment and humans with it. Even if they are withdrawn, the chemicals and their residues are everywhere; in soil, surface water and ground-water.

By March 2011, our global campaign team against the neonicotinoids, headed by the independent toxicologist, Dr Henk Tennekes, had provided us with enough information to produce a Hypothesis of Immune Deficiency in Wildlife, based on circumstantial and temporally-related evidence of the outbreaks of infections in wildlife throughout the world.

By May 2011, Dr Tennekes and others had sent us sufficient peer-reviewed papers from basic scientific journals with proof that the neonicotinoids were toxic to mammals. The vertebrate nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the central nervous system are similar to those of invertebrates, on which the neonicotinoid insecticides act. Despite sending the document to a wide number of individuals: University ecologists who were studying the declines, Regulatory agencies, medical doctors, EU Commissioners and Ministers and Scientists in the UK, we had few responses. However, we did eventually have responses from the two Chief Scientists and the Minister of State for the Environment in the UK. They rejected it, preferring to take expert advice from their own scientists in the CRD, Defra and Fera.

By November 2011, the US EPA Conditional Registration Document in 2003 provided us with the ultimate proof! Despite all the risks that the EPA scientists had reported, and the 2 Data Gaps that they had identified, the Registration Division of the US EPA overruled them and gave Bayer conditional registration for clothianidin to be used on corn and canola.

Also in November 2011, Bayer, under the guise of being a pharmaceutical company, has developed anti-varroal drugs. There is now haste to get the Tabajdi Report adopted by the European Commission. Bayer will make money by pouring even more chemicals into bees. It is unlikely that anti-varroals will be effective in immune-compromised individuals.

CONTINUES... Honey Bees

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To download the complete
document by Dr Mason and Palle Uhd Jepsen
click here

To view a summary of the US EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) conditional registration document for Clothianidin
by Dr Mason
click here.

(Clicking on the links opens new windows).


Book Review

Click Here

Neonicotinoid Pesticides:

The Risk To Bees


How do neonicotinoids work to kill insects like bees? 

Manufacturers provide clues!