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December 26, 2017

Pesticide turns honeybees into picky eaters

Honeybees on a flower.

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In 2012, biologists at the Univrsity of California, (UC), San Diego, published their findings from a study in which they discovered that a small dose of a commonly used crop pesticide turns honeybees into "picky eaters" and affects their ability to recruit their nestmates to otherwise good sources of food.

Results of the study have implications for what pesticides should be applied to bee-pollinated crops and shed light on one of the main culprits suspected to be behind the recent declines in honeybee colonies.

This research was supported in part by the National Science Foundation (grant IOS 05-45856).

To learn more about this research, see the NSF News From the Field story Commonly used pesticide turns honeybees into picky eaters. (Date image taken: 2011; date originally posted to NSF Multimedia Gallery: Dec. 26, 2017)

Credit: James Nieh

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