Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Study Shows Beeswax Contaminated by Acaricide Treatments

Pesticide Residues in Beeswax Samples Collected from Honey Bee Colonies (Apis mellifera L.) in France
Pest Management Science, Volume 63, Issue 11 , Pages 1100 – 1106 (November 2007)

Abstract: In 2002 a field survey was initiated in French apiaries in order to monitor the health of honey bee colonies (Apis mellifera L.). Studied apiaries were evenly distributed across five sites located in continental France. Beeswax samples were collected once a year over 2 years from a total of 125 honey bee colonies. Multiresidue analyses were performed on these samples in order to identify residues of 16 insecticides and acaricides and two fungicides.

Residues of 14 of the searched-for compounds were found in samples. Tau-fluvalinate, coumaphos and endosulfan residues were the most frequently occurring residues (61.9, 52.2 and 23.4% of samples respectively). Coumaphos was found in the highest average quantities (792.6 µg kg-1). Residues of cypermethrin, lindane and deltamethrin were found in 21.9, 4.3 and 2.4% of samples respectively.

Statistical tests showed no difference between years of sampling, with the exception of the frequency of pyrethroid residues. Beeswax contamination was the result of both in-hive acaricide treatments and, to a much lesser extent, environmental pollution.

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