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Toxicity of the Systemic Insecticide, Imidacloprid, to Forest Stream Insects and Microbial Communities

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Imidacloprid was added to laboratory aquatic microcosms at concentrations of 12, 24, 48 and 96 μg/L to determine effects on leaf-shredding aquatic insect survival and feeding rates, and on aquatic microbial decomposition of leaf material. Survival of the stonefly, Pteronarcys dorsata, was significantly reduced at 48 and 96 μg/L. There was no significant mortality of the cranefly, Tipula sp., but most surviving tipulids were very sluggish and non-responsive to prodding at 48 and 96 μg/L. Leaf decomposition by these leaf-shredding insects was significantly reduced at all test concentrations. There were no significant adverse effects on microbial decomposition of leaf material.

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Technical assistance was provided by Scott Capell, Mandy Roberts and Korrie Young. The study was supported in part by the Enhanced Pest Management Methods S&T Program of Natural Resources Canada.

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Correspondence to D. P. Kreutzweiser.

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Kreutzweiser, D.P., Good, K.P., Chartrand, D.T. et al. Toxicity of the Systemic Insecticide, Imidacloprid, to Forest Stream Insects and Microbial Communities. Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 80, 211–214 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00128-007-9347-8

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  • Imidacloprid
  • Toxicity
  • Aquatic insects
  • Microbial decomposition