Return to Now - June 4, 2018
This non-toxic fungus-based insecticide kills over 200,000 pesky insects without harming bees.
A all-natural mushroom-based insecticide could make bee-harming neonicotinoids and most other chemical pesticides obsolete.
It’s not toxic to humans, pollinators, fish, birds or any other non-targeted animal.
This is great news in light of 700 species of American bees recently joining the endangered species list, the entire Gulf coast becoming a dead zone for sea life, and the bird population of Europe freefalling to a third of what it was a few decades ago.
There’s only one catch, it has to be approved by the EPA.
Mycologist Paul Stamets has developed the “most disruptive technology the pesticide industry has ever witnessed” simply by “training” mushrooms to sporulate later, after they’ve been eaten by pesky insects.
He patented two insecticides in 2006 — one for carpenter ants, fire ants and termites, and another for 200,000 other types of insects — using special mushrooms he developed.
Normally mushroom spores repel insects, but Stamets’ mushrooms attract the insects to eat them before they sporulate, and then sporulate and sprout inside of them, right through the insects’ bodies.
According to Stamets, after insects eat the fungi, they “become mummified” and a “mushroom pops out of their head.”