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Protecting Pollinators in Forests

Dr. Elizabeth Benton

Hemlock woolly adelgid can kill hemlock trees in as little as three years.  Insecticides are commonly used to conserve hemlock forests.  Research has shown that the insecticide use in hemlock forests is a responsible management choice, as it preserves a keystone species while having little to no negative effects on the surrounding ecosystem.   Soil arthropods, canopy arthropods, and aquatic insect communities have all been assessed.  Now Elizabeth Benton is working to get the last pieces of the puzzle: forest pollinators and arthropod seed dispersers.  She is working with rare ephemeral plants growing in hemlock forests in north Georgia to determine if the insecticide use is causing any problems.  If it is, then current insecticide management practices may need to be modified to be more protective of the ecosystem.

Related Publications:

https://www.warnell.uga.edu/outreach/publications/individual/explanation-new-epa-freshwater-invertebrate-imidacloprid-endpoints

https://www.warnell.uga.edu/outreach/publications/individual/optimized-insecticide-dosage-hemlock-woolly-adelgid-control

RISK ASSESSMENT OF IMIDACLOPRID USE IN FOREST SETTINGS ON THE AQUATIC MACROINVERTEBRATE COMMUNITY

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