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Posted Tue Jun 22 2010: from EnvironmentalResearchWeb:
Bee decline could be down to chemical cocktail interfering with brains http://apocadocs.com/s.pl?1277234619
A cocktail of chemicals from pesticides could be damaging the brains of British bees, according to scientists about to embark on a study into why the populations of the insects have dropped so rapidly in recent decades. By affecting the way bees' brains work, the pesticides might be affecting the ability of bees to find food or communicate with others in their colonies.... Chris Connolly of Dundee University's Centre for Neuroscience has been awarded 1.5 m to lead the work on whether pesticides are having an affect on the brains of bees. Pesticides could be blocking the electrical and chemical signals between neurons, he said, and only subtle changes may be required to produce serious brain disorders. These problems might stop bees identifying the best sources of nectar, or it might affect their ability to navigate to nearby food source and back home again. Brain disorders in bees might also interfere with their ability to communicate with nest-mates using the "waggle dance", where bees come back to their hive and spread information about the food sources they have found. The IPI will bring together ecologists, molecular biologists, mathematicians and computer experts to study the decline of honeybees and other insect pollinators from a range of different angles.
[Read more stories about: pesticide runoff, toxic buildup]

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'Doc Michael says:
Why would pesticides affect bugs that aren't pests?

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