U.S. Department of Agriculture: Agricultural Research Service, Lincoln, Nebraska


Date of this Version



Current Opinion in Insect Science 2017, 21:47–53


Copyright 2017 Elsevier Inc.

This document is a U.S. government work and is not subject to copyright in the United States.



Insecticides are an invaluable pest management tool and anthropogenic stressors of widespread environmental occurrence that are subject to biased perceptions based on the targeted application, market value of use, and regulatory requirements. As a result, short-term and simplistic efforts focusing on lethal effects toward individual species and populations prevail. Holistic and comprehensive studies exploring rather common sublethal insecticide exposures are rare, particularly considering their potential role in structuring populations and communities in diverse environmental settings and potentially interfering in a range of ecological interactions. Studies on insecticide resistance, for example, do not go beyond population-based studies, disregarding temporal and spatial effects in the associated community, and rarely considering the whole of sublethal exposure. Some of these knowledge gaps are here recognized and explored.