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    Risk assessments of agrochemicals on non-target insects are biased in studies with surrogate groups, such as pollinators. In social insects, such investigations are generally restricted to lethal tests with adults maintained individually, simulating a non-realistic scenario. Here, we performed a holistic approach to resemble a chronic field exposure of Polistes versicolor (Hymenoptera: Vespidae) to a common biopesticide. These wasps are predators that perform biological control in the agroecosystems. Wasps were chronically subjected to the ingestion of different concentrations of azadirachtin. The neonicotinoid imidacloprid was used as a positive control. For the first time, we demonstrated that the biopesticide azadirachtin is detrimental for individual and colony survival and impairs colony reproduction of a social wasp maintained in the laboratory. Our data also indicated that neonicotinoid imidacloprid is harmful to wasps and their colonies. Therefore, the concomitant use of azadirachtin and paper wasps in integrated pest management strategies should be carefully evaluated, because the constant use of this pesticide can be detrimental for social wasps, possibly reducing biological control. Copyright © 2021 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


    Gabrazane V M Teixeira, André R De Souza, Wagner F Barbosa, Rodrigo C Bernardes, Maria Augusta P Lima. Chronic exposure to a common biopesticide is detrimental to individuals and colonies of the paper wasp Polistes versicolor. The Science of the total environment. 2022 Mar 01;810:152108

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    PMID: 34871682

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