Custodians of Mull land have responsibilities
Sir, In response to the letter from Tim Liddon of Tilhill Forestry ( The Oban
Times, April 27), many pesticides that are now banned – for example, organophosphates – were once authorised and approved by government and scientific authorities.
Neonicotinoids are already banned in some European countries and are shortly to be banned by the EU.
Pesticides are designed to kill, and neonicotinoids destroys acetylcholine in nerves and the brain.
The hazards for the neonicotinoid pesticide Gazelle (which is an acetamiprid) are: 1. highly water soluble 2. very persistent in aquatic systems 3. moderate mammalian toxicity 4. high potential for bioaccumulation 5. highly toxic to birds and earthworms 6. toxic to aquatic organisms 7. contaminates other plants, which depend on insect pollination, by the fungal mycorrhizal association from the systemic treated trees. (I invite readers check for yourself about acetamiprid.)
Yes, we enjoy the forests, but also for their wildlife and flowers. Mull has one of the richest variety and concentration of wildlife in Europe – golden eagles, a flourishing hen harrier population (which is declining in the rest of UK) and insects not found any where else.
Tilhill Forestry has a responsibility, as custodian of the land for future generations, to ensure that this wonderful diversity of wildlife and flowers (which depend on insect pollinators, such as bees) are protected.
Wildlife tourism is also a major factor in Mull’s economy. Michael Shilson, Dervaig, Isle of Mull.