Real-world combos of pesticides highly lethal to frogs, study shows

Frogs exposed to a pesticide mix similar to what’s found on the average farm die in greater numbers than those dosed with just one pesticide, a new study shows. In new research in the online edition of the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, scientists at UC-Berkeley exposed tadpoles to individual pesticides, and found that about 4 percent kicked it before they matured into frogs. But when the tadpoles were exposed to a mix of atrazine and eight other pesticides — a combination that mimicked conditions on a real-world Nebraska cornfield — the mortality rate rose to 35 percent. The chemicals suppressed their immune systems, making them vulnerable to infections and illnesses, and increased their transition time from tadpole to frog, lowering their survival chances. The researchers conclude that pesticides are likely playing a major role in the massive global decline of amphibian species. Frogs to humanity: Get us organic farming — stat!