ISTC Sustainability Seminar: Are pyrethroid insecticides a threat to aquatic non-target species?

March 2, 2017 , noon-1pm CST
In person at the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (1 E. Hazelwood Dr., Champaign) or online at

Presented by Michael Lydy, Ph.D. — Professor in the Departments of Zoology and Chemistry & Biochemistry, Southern Illinois University at Carbondale

Pyrethroid insecticides are currently used for pest control in terrestrial environments in both agricultural and urban areas world-wide, but often their residues are transported to aquatic systems through runoff events. These insecticides are hydrophobic so they tend to associate with the organic carbon portion of sediments and mortality has been linked with sediment pyrethroid residues. Special concern has been raised about the impacts of pyrethroid exposure in urban environments. In addition, several field populations of the freshwater amphipod, Hyalella azteca, from pesticide-exposed waterbodies demonstrate resistance to pyrethroid insecticides. If resistant H. azteca experience pyrethroid exposure, one of the possible consequences is bioaccumulation, which increases the potential for transfer of pyrethroids from the resistant individuals to higher trophic level organisms. This presentation will address how prevalent pyrethroids are in the aquatic environment and whether they are detected at high enough concentrations to cause harm to non-target aquatic species. It will also detail results concerning the potential for transfer of pyrethroids from resistant individuals to higher trophic level organisms.

Author: Laura B.

I'm the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center's Sustainability Information Curator, which is a fancy way of saying embedded librarian. I'm also Executive Director of the Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable. When not writing for Environmental News Bits, I'm an avid reader. Visit Laura's Reads to see what I'm currently reading.

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