Sublethal concentrations of clothianidin affect honey bee colony growth and hive CO2 concentration.
ABSTRACT: The effects of agricultural pesticide exposure upon honey bee colonies is of increasing interest to beekeepers and researchers, and the impact of neonicotinoid pesticides in particular has come under intense scrutiny. To explore potential colony-level effects of a neonicotinoid pesticide at field-relevant concentrations, honey bee colonies were fed 5- and 20-ppb concentrations of clothianidin in sugar syrup while control colonies were fed unadulterated syrup. Two experiments were conducted in successive years at the same site in southern Arizona, and one in the high rainfall environment of Mississippi. Across all three experiments, adult bee masses were about 21% lower among colonies fed 20-ppb clothianidin than the untreated control group, but no effects of treatment on brood production were observed. Average daily hive weight losses per day in the 5-ppb clothianidin colonies were about 39% lower post-treatment than in the 20-ppb clothianidin colonies, indicating lower consumption and/or better foraging, but the dry weights of newly-emerged adult bees were on average 6-7% lower in the 5-ppb group compared to the other groups, suggesting a nutritional problem in the 5-ppb group. Internal hive CO2 concentration was higher on average in colonies fed 20-ppb clothianidin, which could have resulted from greater CO2 production and/or reduced ventilating activity. Hive temperature average and daily variability were not affected by clothianidin exposure but did differ significantly among trials. Clothianidin was found to be, like imidacloprid, highly stable in honey in the hive environment over several months.
PROVIDER: S-EPMC7902615 | BioStudies |