Neonicotinoids linked to recent fall in farmland bird numbers

To: Jeremy O'Wheel <>
Subject: Neonicotinoids linked to recent fall in farmland bird numbers
From: Carl Clifford <>
Date: Thu, 10 Jul 2014 17:27:24 +1000
Thanks for that Jeremy. Not being in the world of Academe, I don't have free 
access to sites such as Nature. I will have a read.

There is still the problem with insecticides such as the the neonicotinoids, 
that there is a insectidal wasteland left after their use, because they knock 
out not only pest species, but also harmless and beneficial species. So much 
for the push for the implementation of integrated pest management campaigns of 
the last century. I guess farmers found them too hard, much easier to adopt 
clear crop approach. 

I would argue, though, that removing birds' food species from large areas does 
have a direct affect on the birds.

Carl Clifford

> On 10 Jul 2014, at 16:45, "Jeremy O'Wheel" <> wrote:
> Attached, although Birding Aus people will not get the attachment.  The study 
> was particularly looking at whether insectivorous birds were impacted by the 
> reduction of insects as a result of insecticides.  So there's nothing in the 
> study to suggest that Neonictoninoids have any direct effect on birds, just 
> that they reduce their food by doing the things we know they do (kill 
> insects) (and quantifying that).  
>> On 10 July 2014 16:21, Carl Clifford <> wrote:
>> Not having read the paper in Nature referred to, I could not answer that, 
>> but with the paper appearing in Nature, I would think that the idea has some 
>> legs.
>> Carl Clifford
>>> On 10 Jul 2014, at 15:25, "Jeremy O'Wheel" <> wrote:
>>> The study seems to have found that birds that eat insects are less likely 
>>> to be found in areas that are sprayed with insecticides, and then the 
>>> journalist has implied it could be a consequence of chemical, rather than 
>>> just the food chain, but I don't see what evidence there is for that. 
>>> Jeremy
>>>> On 10 July 2014 13:53, Carl Clifford <> wrote:
>>>> I wonder what the effects are in Australia? I also wonder, has anyone been 
>>>> looking?
>>>> Carl Clifford
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> <nature13531.pdf>
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