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Insects 2011, 2(1), 12-21; doi:10.3390/insects2010012

A New Method for in Situ Measurement of Bt-Maize Pollen Deposition on Host-Plant Leaves

TIEM Integrated Environmental Monitoring GbR, Nörten-Hardenberg/Bremen, Germany
Ökologiebüro, Bremen, Germany
Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, Department of Biosafety, Bonn, Germany
Büro Kuhn, Bremen, Germany
IFÖN, Berlin, Germany
Sachverständigenbüro, Nörten-Hardenberg, Germany
Environmental Agency Brandenburg (LUA), Eberswalde, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 December 2010 / Revised: 11 January 2011 / Accepted: 17 February 2011 / Published: 21 February 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effects of Genetically Modified Plants on Insects)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [886 KB, uploaded 21 February 2011]   |  


Maize is wind pollinated and produces huge amounts of pollen. In consequence, the Cry toxins expressed in the pollen of Bt maize will be dispersed by wind in the surrounding vegetation leading to exposure of non-target organisms (NTO). NTO like lepidopteran larvae may be affected by the uptake of Bt-pollen deposited on their host plants. Although some information is available to estimate pollen deposition on host plants, recorded data are based on indirect measurements such as shaking or washing off pollen, or removing pollen with adhesive tapes. These methods often lack precision and they do not include the necessary information such as the spatial and temporal variation of pollen deposition on the leaves. Here, we present a new method for recording in situ the amount and the distribution of Bt-maize pollen deposited on host plant leaves. The method is based on the use of a mobile digital microscope (Dino-Lite Pro, including DinoCapture software), which can be used in combination with a notebook in the field. The method was evaluated during experiments in 2008 to 2010. Maize pollen could be correctly identified and pollen deposition as well as the spatial heterogeneity of maize pollen deposition was recorded on maize and different lepidopteran host plants (Centaurea scabiosa, Chenopodium album, Rumex spp., Succina pratensis and Urtica dioica) growing adjacent to maize fields. View Full-Text
Keywords: GMO; GMP; Bt maize; maize; pollen; deposition; exposure; non-target organisms; Lepidoptera GMO; GMP; Bt maize; maize; pollen; deposition; exposure; non-target organisms; Lepidoptera

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Hofmann, F.; Otto, M.; Kuhn, U.; Ober, S.; Schlechtriemen, U.; Vögel, R. A New Method for in Situ Measurement of Bt-Maize Pollen Deposition on Host-Plant Leaves. Insects 2011, 2, 12-21.

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