Connections between beekeeping and the environment. The bee as a biological indicator of pesticides (with particular reference to the Province of Forli) . (Preliminary note)

Celli, G.; Porrini, C.; Tiraferri, S.

Bollettino dell' Istituto di Entomologia ' Guido Grandi' della Universita degli Studi di Bologna 39: 231-241


Accession: 001553065

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The honey bee [Apis mellifera], by its mortality rates and accumulation of residues in the hive from contaminated pollen, has proved an excellent indicator of the level of environmental pollution, especially from chemical pesticides, in Italy and elsewhere. The results are reviewed of a recent active monitoring campaign, using A. mellifera and supervised by the Guido Grandi Institute of Entomology at Bologna, to follow the environmental situation in the Province of Forli. Each of the 24 sampling stations is kept under observation by a beekeeper, and the critical threshold for implementing chemical analysis is 500-700 dead bees/week. From the data obtained for 1983, a detailed map was made of the low, medium and high risk areas for bees. The products most frequently found in 19 samples of dead bees were fungicides (in 73.8% of the samples), followed by insecticides (in 57.9%) and acaricides (in 5.3%).