Pesticides damage the brains of baby bees, new research finds
Pesticides, along with the climate crises and declining habitat, have been blamed for their declining numbers. And in a new study published Tuesday, scientists examined exactly how bumblebees are affected by pesticides by scanning bumble bee brains and testing their learning abilities.
They found that baby bees can feel the effects of the food contaminated by pesticides brought back by worker bees into the colony, making them poorer at performing tasks later in life.
“Worryingly in this case, when young bees are fed on pesticide-contaminated food, this caused parts of the brain to grow less, leading to older adult bees possessing smaller and functionally impaired brains; an effect that appeared to be permanent and irreversible.”