'Neonics' linked to honeybee decline

World's most used pesticide having dramatic impact of wildlife and ecosystems...
28 June 2014
Presented by Graihagh Jackson


A honey bee on a flower


Neonicotinoids are a group of chemical used as a pesticide on crops. In fact, they're so effective at killing pests, they're currently the most widely used insecticide in the world. These chemicals target the nervous system by mimicking the actions of nicotine, a natural plant toxin. They block signals between nerve cells, causing paralysis and death. However, a study commissioned by the International Union for Conservation of Nature has concluded that these neonicotinoids also are deadly to many beneficial creatures - from earthworms to sparrows - and have even been linked to the decline of honeybees. Graihagh Jackson visited the RSPB's headquarters in Bedfordshire to speak to Dr David Gibbons, one of the authors of the report.


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