Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

NOAA scientists find mosquito control pesticide low risk to juvenile oysters, hard clams

10.06.2014

Climate stressors, however, increase risk to shellfish

Four of the most common mosquito pesticides used along the east and Gulf coasts show little risk to juvenile hard clams and oysters, according to a NOAA study.


The study showed low risk of impacts from four common mosquito pesticides on juvenile hard clams -- but that risk increased with climate stressors such as hypoxia.

Credit: NOAA

However, the study, published in the on-line journal Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology, also determined that lower oxygen levels in the water, known as hypoxia, and increased acidification actually increased how toxic some of the pesticides were. Such climate variables should be considered when using these pesticides in the coastal zone, the study concluded.

"What we found is that larval oysters and hard clams can withstand low levels of pesticide use, but they are more sensitive to pesticides if their ecosystem is suffering from local climate stressors like hypoxia and acidification," said the study's lead author, Marie DeLorenzo, Ph.D., NOAA environmental physiology and microbiology program lead with NOAA's Centers for Coastal Ocean Science. "Hopefully these data will benefit both shellfish mariculture operations and environmental resource agencies as they manage the use of mosquito control pesticides near their coastal ecosystems."

Commercial shellfishing has a large economic national impact. NOAA Fisheries estimated that U.S. oyster and hard clam landings for 2010 were worth nearly $118 million and $41 million, respectively. Shellfish growers, however, are concerned that pesticide spraying near the coastlines may contaminate both their hatcheries and source waters. This is compounded by a lack of data on the toxicity of mosquito insecticides for these shellfish.

These ecologically and economically important species inhabit tidal marsh habitats along the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coastlines. Clams and oysters are also important for the coastal ecosystem because they filter water, improving water quality, and serve as habitat and food sources for other estuarine species.

Approximately 200 mosquito species live in the United States. In addition to causing painful itchy bumps to people, mosquito bites can transmit serious diseases such as malaria, dengue fever, and West Nile virus. One approach to controlling mosquitoes is to apply pesticides by spraying from planes or trucks over a large area. However, to effectively control mosquitoes, the pesticides must target species which live in aquatic habitats that are also home to sensitive estuarine species. This may pose a risk to coastal environments. Also, since many residential communities where the pesticides may be used are near these coastal aquatic habitats, the potential for direct overspray or unintentional drift into these waters is increased.

The study sought to address a lack of toxicity data for mosquito control pesticide effects on shellfish early life stages. The research team examined the toxicity of four mosquito control pesticides (naled, resmethrin, permethrin, and methoprene) to larval and juvenile life stages of hard clams (Mercenaria mercenaria) and Eastern oysters (Crassostrea virginica).

Lethal thresholds were determined for the four pesticides, and differences in sensitivity were found between chemicals, species, and life stages tested. Overall, clams were more susceptible to mosquito control pesticides than oysters. Naled, an organophosphate chemical, was the most toxic compound in oyster larvae, while resmethrin was the most toxic compound in clam larvae. Decreased swimming activity was observed after four days in larval oysters and decreased growth was found in juvenile clams and oysters after 21 days.

Using a hazard assessment, which compared the toxicity thresholds to concentrations expected in the environment, the researchers calculated a low-level of risk to clams and oysters from application of these pesticides for mosquito control.

The researchers also tested the pesticides' toxicity under climate stress conditions. The more extreme climate conditions caused increased pesticide toxicity.

The study did not address the impacts of the pesticides on other shellfish such as shrimp or lobsters.

###

NOAA's mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth's environment, from the depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and manage our coastal and marine resources. Join us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and our other social media channels.

Ben Sherman | Eurek Alert!

Further reports about: NOAA larvae mosquito oysters pesticide pesticides shellfish species toxic toxicity

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Better soil data key for future food security
21.06.2016 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

nachricht New plant engineering method could help fill demand for crucial malaria drug
14.06.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Molekulare Pflanzenphysiologie

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First experimental quantum simulation of particle physics phenomena

Physicists in Innsbruck have realized the first quantum simulation of lattice gauge theories, building a bridge between high-energy theory and atomic physics. In the journal Nature, Rainer Blatt‘s and Peter Zoller’s research teams describe how they simulated the creation of elementary particle pairs out of the vacuum by using a quantum computer.

Elementary particles are the fundamental buildings blocks of matter, and their properties are described by the Standard Model of particle physics. The...

Im Focus: Is There Life On Mars?

Survivalist back from Space - 18 months on the outer skin of the ISS

A year and a half on the outer wall of the International Space Station ISS in altitude of 400 kilometers is a real challenge. Whether a primordial bacterium...

Im Focus: CWRU physicists deploy magnetic vortex to control electron spin

Potential technology for quantum computing, keener sensors

Researchers at Case Western Reserve University have developed a way to swiftly and precisely control electron spins at room temperature.

Im Focus: Physicists measured something new in the radioactive decay of neutrons

The experiment inspired theorists; future ones could reveal new physics

A physics experiment performed at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has enhanced scientists' understanding of how free neutrons decay...

Im Focus: Discovery of gold nanocluster 'double' hints at other shape changing particles

New analysis approach brings two unique atomic structures into focus

Chemically the same, graphite and diamonds are as physically distinct as two minerals can be, one opaque and soft, the other translucent and hard. What makes...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ERES 2016: The largest conference in the European real estate industry

09.06.2016 | Event News

Networking 4.0: International Laser Technology Congress AKL’16 Shows New Ways of Cooperations

24.05.2016 | Event News

Challenges of rural labor markets

20.05.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Nanoscientists develop the 'ultimate discovery tool'

24.06.2016 | Materials Sciences

Russian physicists create a high-precision 'quantum ruler'

24.06.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Hubble confirms new dark spot on Neptune

24.06.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>