(By Dr. Mercola) - Neonicotinoid pesticides, which are widely used in intensive agricultural operations, have been implicated in the decline of bees, particularly in commercially bred species like honeybees and bumblebees. New research published in Nature Communications has now shown these chemicals are leading to long-term population changes in wild bees as well. How Do Neonicotionids Harm Bees? The majority of soybean, corn, canola and sunflower seeds planted in the U.S. are coated with neonicotinoid pesticides. The chemicals, which are produced by Bayer and Syngenta, travel systemically through the plants and kill insects that munch on their roots and leaves. When treated with neonicotinoids, all parts of the plant become potentially toxic to insects. Neonicotinoids are powerful neurotoxins and are quite effective at killing the pests, but they’re also harmful to non-target pests, namely pollinators such as bees and butterflies.

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