- Trask, Harry W.
With a few exceptions, modern organic pesticides such as carbaryl are synthetic chemicals and are not found in the natural environment unless placed there. Whenever they are introduced into a natural ecosystem, such as the Maine spruce-fir forest, there are some inevitable reactions. In addition to killing the target pest, pesticides also may alter, and be altered by, non-target organisms, both plant and animal. They also may be susceptible to or resistant to biodegradations; in the latter case, the pesticide and its metabolites may join with and become a part of the natural ecosystem, and, potentially, accumulate in food chains where each predator ends up with a higher content of bio-resistant material than its prey.
In order to better understand the nature and potential for such behavior in the environment, it is useful to first understand some of the basic data regarding the pesticide compound in question. Given below are some of the chemical and physical properties of carbaryl (trademarked Sevin), the formulation and preparation, and the application of the pesticide. Since much of this information is commonly and readily available, information sources are indicated only where specific properties are given.