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Tue Feb 5, 2013, 08:59 AM

New Study: Common Pesticides Kill Frogs on Contact

To me, there are few more comforting sights on a farm or in a garden than a frog hopping about amid the crops. Frogs and other amphibians don't just look and sound cool—they also feast upon the insects that feast upon the plants we eat. These bug-scarfing creatures are a free source of what is known as biological pest control.

But modern industrial agriculture doesn't have much use for them. It leans on chemistry, not biology, to control pests—and in doing so, it's probably contributing to the catastrophic global decline of amphibians, a natural ally to farmers for millennia. The irony is stark: In industrial agriculture's zeal to wipe out pests, it is helping to wipe out those pests' natural predators. The latest evidence: a new study showing that exposure to common pesticides at levels used in farm fields can kill frogs rapidly.

For a decade or so, it has become increasingly clear that widely used herbicides like Syngenta's atrazine, in tiny amounts found in streams after running off from farm fields, do crazy things to the sexual development of frogs. Such "endocrine-disrupting chemicals" have what scientists call chronic, not acute, effects on amphibians—that is, they don't kill them outright, but they alter them profoundly—even change their gender. (See Dashka Slater's profile of a scientist who documented atrazine's impact on frogs, earning a backlash from Syngenta.) Monsanto's blockbuster herbicide Roundup also exerts subtle but important harm on amphibians, research suggests.

Again, this research focuses on what happens to amphibians when they encounter agricultural poisons at low levels in ponds and streams. But what happens when they are actually sprayed with chemicals in farm fields? That's where the new study, a recent peer-reviewed paper by a group of German and Swiss scientists, comes in. They write that the phenomenon of frogs experiencing direct contact with pesticides has been little-studied, even though the scenario is quite common on the ground—farmland has become one of the "the largest terrestrial biomes on Earth, occupying more than 40% of the land surface," and thus represents an "essential habitat for amphibians."

http://www.motherjones.com/tom-philpott/2013/01/new-study-common-pesticides-kill-frogs-contact

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Reply New Study: Common Pesticides Kill Frogs on Contact (Original post)
The Straight Story Feb 2013 OP
marions ghost Feb 2013 #1
The Straight Story Feb 2013 #2
marions ghost Feb 2013 #4
Berlum Feb 2013 #3
Remmah2 Feb 2013 #5

Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 09:14 AM

1. Support organic farming

as much as possible. It is the only thing we can do as pigs at the end of the trough.

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 09:20 AM

2. That, growing your own food, hunting your own meet, catching your own fish

(although some waterways I would not eat the fish out of).

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Response to The Straight Story (Reply #2)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 09:32 AM

4. Not realistic for most people

If you raise food, you know the work and constant focus that it takes. Most people have jobs that leave no time or energy for growing their own food. Community Gardens DO make sense. But still, this is not a route for millions of individuals. Fine for those who have the luxury of time, some ground and the ability to raise plants. You can waste a lot of time and money trying to get your own food.

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 09:25 AM

3. GMO crops wind up needing more chemicals than normal crops

How sick is that? Occult, unlabeled mutant GMO crops actually require more more more chemicals than normal crops. But that keeps Big Chem, Big Mutant, and Big AG rolling in obscene profits.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/04/pesticides-gmo-monsanto-roundup-resistance_n_1936598.html

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Response to The Straight Story (Original post)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 09:34 AM

5. I'm proud of the weeds on my lawn.

 

I can identify 10 forms of wild flowers . I cook w/the wild onions.

Proud of the ant hills too.

I can't stand "perfect lawns" everything is so wrong anout them. Is that chemical dependency or what?

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