Glyphosate found in field test to be not harmful to honey bees

Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto Corp’s Roundup herbicide, seems to be bee friendly.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’ and Missisipppi State University reported this week that a test of 42 common pesticides and similar chemicals were field tested to determine their toxicity level.

The results are of interest here because of the controversy over genetically modified crops, mainly corn. The corn is modified to defend against glyphosate as the chemical kills weeds, but some opponents are fearful of the unintended effects of the chemical.

The department’s Agricultural Research Service and the university set up an experiment that exposed bees to sprays of chemicals as if they were unintentionally sprayed in the field.  Glyphosate was one of seven pesticides that killed nearly no bees in the test, the department said.

Some pesticides killed all the bees.

The article was published in the Journal of Economic Entomology.

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