Home > Papers from 2014 > How insecticides impact on bee navigation

How insecticides impact on bee navigation

In recent times there has been widespread concern over the impact that certain pesticides might have on the health of essential pollinators such as honeybees. One way that honeybee colonies might be impacted is in their ability to forage and then navigate successfully to their hive. Fischer et al. treated bees with common neonicotinoids and then radar tracked them as the attempted to ‘home’ from displaced location. Treated and untreated bees showed similar navigational performance when inititially released, suggesting that Path Integration systems are unaffected by pesticide treatment. However treated bees showed a decreased ability to home after the initial vector flight. This suggests that pesticides may well impair to ability to retrieve and utilise learnt information.

Fischer, J., Müller, T., Spatz, A. K., Greggers, U., Grünewald, B., & Menzel, R. (2014). Neonicotinoids Interfere with Specific Components of Navigation in Honeybees. PloS one9(3), e91364.

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Categories: Papers from 2014
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