Simulating the impact of cholinesterase-inhibiting pesticides on non-target wildlife in irrigated crops Academic Article uri icon


  • We present a simulation model for risk assessment of the impact of insecticide inhibitors of cholinesterase (ChE) applied in irrigated agricultural fields on non-target wildlife. The model, which we developed as a compartment model based on difference equations (t = 1 h), consists of six submodels describing the dynamics of (1) insecticide application, (2) insecticide movement into floodable soil, (3) irrigation and rain, (4) insecticide dissolution in water, (5) foraging and insecticide intake from water, and (6) ChE inhibition and recovery. To demonstrate application of the model, we simulated historical and "worst-case" scenarios of the impact of ChE-inhibiting insecticides on white-winged doves (Zenaida asiatica) inhabiting natural brushland adjacent to cotton and sugarcane fields in the Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas, USA. Only when a rain event occurred just after insecticide application did predicted levels of ChE inhibition surpass the diagnostic level of 20% exposure. The present model should aid in assessing the effect of ChE-inhibiting insecticides on ChE activity of different species that drink contaminated water from irrigated agricultural fields, and in identifying specific situations in which the juxtaposition of environmental conditions and management schemes could result in a high risk to non-target wildlife. 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Pisani, J. M., Grant, W. E., & Mora, M. A.

citation count

  • 8

complete list of authors

  • Pisani, Jorge M||Grant, William E||Mora, Miguel A

publication date

  • January 2008