22.214.171.124.10. Validity of the trial
Positive residue analyses in samples of pollen or nectar brought back to the control colonies would render the test as invalid. Negative residue analyses in samples of pollen or nectar brought back to the treatment colonies would render the test invalid. Prior to the treatment (before the blooming period) the mortality and behaviour of the colony (incl. foraging activity) should be not statistically differ between treatment and control groups. Should this not be the case, the study would be invalid.
The evolution of mortality and the different observations described above do not change in the case of the control fields both before and after exposure to flowers. Different crops are susceptible to being treated with the same AI. This could extend the exposure of the colonies under study in time and quantity. Similarly, the different blooms happening in the surroundings of the colonies under testing may dilute the exposure quantities. The purpose of this protocol is to evaluate the effect of on bee colonies of a specific AI applied to a specific crop at a specific time in the year. The uncertainty of the representativeness of the results of the trial to reality is therefore high.