Scientists have discovered the poison in the honey samples around the world

Alexandre Aebi inspecting one of his hives in his apiary in Switzerland

"What this shows is the magnitude of the contamination", said study lead author Edward Mitchell, a biology professor at the University of Neuchatel in Switzerland, adding that there are "relatively few places where we did not find any".

"The increasingly documented sublethal effects of neonicotinoid pesticides at environmentally relevant concentrations on bees", the researchers note, "include growth disorders, reduced efficiency of the immune system, neurological and cognitive disorders, respiratory and reproductive function, queen survival, foraging efficiency", and decreased homing capacity. They are indeed less than the ceiling allowed by the european Union, according to the study published Thursday in the journal Science.

Harvesting honey around the world, researchers have discovered that three-quarters of their samples were of the same pesticide suspected to be behind the decline of bee populations.

Two-fifths of the samples contained two or more varieties of the pesticides, and 10% held residues from four or five.

As for the effects on bees, 34% of honey samples were found to have concentrations of neonicotinoids that are known to be detrimental to insects, suggesting that a substantial proportion of world pollinators are probably affected by the pesticides. Honeybees don't just make honey; about one-third of the human diet comes from plants that are pollinated by the insects.

The impact on bees of continuing to use these pesticides is expected to have widespread consequences.

Iowa State at Oklahoma
To say Campbell's chances of pulling off a win in this one were slim would be one of the biggest understatements of the season. Through four games, Park has led the Cyclones to a 2-2 (0-1 Big 12) record , throwing for 1,181 yards and nine touchdowns.

The honey of North America was a dismal figure: the samples drawn from the continent were contaminated in 86% of cases, compared with 57 % of those from South America.

One outside expert says the study is too small to make any broad conclusions.

In all the samples, the pesticide levels were below what's been established as safe for human exposure. They said neonics are unsafe to all sorts of insects, even ladybugs.

"Despite the fact that the majority of our samples were contaminated, as a beekeeper I was stunned by the cocktails [of neonicotinoids] at which honeybees are exposed, especially since cocktail effects are now not tested on non-target organisms", said Aebi.

One side benefit of collecting honey is that researchers could sample some.

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