We urge you to regulate and limit the use of seeds coated in neonicotinoid pesticides, which kill birds and bees.
Most of the pesticides on the seeds don’t stay there — up to 95% gets rubbed off or washed away, contaminating the surrounding environment. Bees can fly through lethal doses of pesticides stirred up during planting. And a single pesticide-coated seed can kill a songbird.
For example, in 2017, 200 red-winged blackbirds died in New Jersey after eating wheat seeds coated in neonics, which had recently been spread in the area.
We shouldn’t plant neonic-coated seeds in millions of acres of soil, poisoning the world around us and killing the very pollinators that help our crops to grow. The EPA’s own research found little benefit to coating soybeans in neonics. And some studies have found the seeds reduced crop yield by killing off the target pests’ natural enemies.
Pesticide-coated seeds should be treated like any other pesticide.