BURLINGTON, Vt. - A $131,758 grant from the EPA will help UVM research pesticide risk for bees.
A press release says UVM will try to reduce pesticide use and improve pest control, while increasing crop yields on 75 acres of hops in the Northeast. The project will also help farmers adopt these practices. Those practices include monitoring and identifying pests and taking preventative measure before using any pesticides.
“With the recent significant growth in hop production in the Northeast it is essential to develop integrated pest management practices for this new crop. Currently, there has been very limited work on how to protect and encourage the numerous beneficial insects in the hopyard to minimize pest outbreaks,” said Heather Darby, an Agronomic and Soils Specialist for the University of Vermont Extension.
The goal is to reduce insecticide and fungicide applications by 50% and reduce the number of insect pests and plants diseases.
A press release says the project will try to find ways to protect bee populations, which have seen population declines over the past several years.
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