Chapter 13 

Pesticides and Water Pollution

      •  The buildup of residual pesticides in the ecosystem threatens the earth’s ecology
      • Both our water and food can be contaminated.  That equals a long term chronic threat
      •  Pesticide broadly means any material that is used to kill a pest
        • A pest is any organism that competes with humans for food, fiber or living space or that detrimentally affects the way of life.
        • Pesticides developed today "target" specific species unlike the broad spectrum pesticides of the past
      • The chemical nature of most synthetic pesticides results in their accumulation and retention in nature
          Certain species have a propensity to bioconcentrate pesticides
      • Persistence is the length of time that a pesticide remains in the environment without it being changed or broken down into different substances
         New pesticides are engineered to break down quickly
      • Resistance = about 5% of any pest population will be resistant to pesticide effects
         Survivors pass on genetic resistance
      • The properties of DDT  (and many other chlorinated pesticides) enable it to disperse, accumulate and biomagnify
      • Organophosphories Pesticides  were developed to resolve problems associated with past pesticides.  Major drawback is their toxicity to man
      • Pesticides can have sublethal effects such as:  changed behavior patterns.
        Reproductive effects = change in predator/prey relationships and effects on phytoplankton at the bottom of the food chain
      •  IPM - (is the new approach) Integrated Pest Management
          •   Uses: Improved land use and management
          •    Better agricultural practices
          •    Selective use of natural and synthetic pesticides
          •    Improved quality of care for natural mechanisms of ecosystem

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