Scientific research & other resources on neonicotinoids

NEWS: OBA responds to the Ontario Government's Pollinator Health Action Plan. Click here to view

For information on the Government's plan for regulatory control of neonicotinoid pesticides, click here


Much has been written and is available to the reader online on the subject of neonicotinoids and their linkage to bee poisonings. Among these are the following reports and peer-reviewed papers that the OBA believes to be particularly relevant and useful. We will keep this section updated with new information as it appears.

NOW AVAILABLE: The Worldwide Integrated Assessment on Systemic Pesticides full report.

Peer Reviewed Papers:

  1. Oliver Samson-Robert, Genevieve Labrie,  Madeleine Chagnon, Valerie Fournier:Neonicotinoid-contaminated puddles of water represent a risk of intoxication for honey bees. PlosOne Dec. 1, 2014
  2. Margaret R. Douglas, Jason R. Rohr and John F. Tooker, "Neonicotinoid insecticide travels through a soil food chain, disrupting biological control of non-target pests and decreasing soya bean yield. Department of Entomology, Pennsylvania State University Journal of Applied Ecology, 2014
  3. Christy A. Morrissey, Pierre Mineau, James H. Devries, Francisco Sanchez-Bayo, Matthias Liess, Michael C. Cavallaro, Karsten Liber.  Neonicotinoid contamination of global surface waters and associate risk to aquatic invertebrates: A review. Environment International Journal 2014
  4. Nicodemo, D., Maioli, M. A., Medeiros, H. C.D., Guelfi, M., Balieira, K. V.B., De Jong, D. and Mingatto, F. E. (2014),Fipronil and imidacloprid reduce honeybee mitochondrial activity. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry. doi: 10.1002/etc.2655
  5. Sandrock C, Tanadini M, Tanadini LG, Fauser-Misslin A, Potts SG, et al. (2014) Impact of Chronic Neonicotinoid Exposure on Honeybee Colony Performance and Queen Supersedure. PLoS ONE 9(8): e103592. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0103592
  6. Madeleine Chagnon, David Kreutzweiser, Edward A. D. Mitchell, Christy A Morrissey, Dominique A. Noome, Jeroen P. Van der Sluijs. Risks of large scale use of systemic insecticides to uecosystem functioning and services Worldwide Integrated Assessment of the Impact of Systemic Pesticides July 2014
  7. Michelle L. Hladik, Dana W. Kolpin, Kathryn M. Kuivila, Widespread occurrence of neonicotinoid insecticides in streams in a high corn and soybean producing region, USAScience  Direct  June 2014
  8. Caspar Hallmann, Ruud Foppen, Chris van Turnhout, Hans deKroon, Elke Jongejans Declines in insectivorous birds are associated with high neonicotinoid concentrations. Nature July 2014
  9. Richard J Gill, Nigel E. Raine. Chronic impairment of bumblebee natural foraging behaviours induced by sublethal pesticide exposure. Functional Ecology, British Ecological Society July 7, 2014 
  10. David Gibbons, Christy Morrissey, Pierre Mineau A Review of the direct and indirect effects of neonicotinoids and fipronil on vertebrate wildlife. Environmental Science and Pollution Research 2014
  11. Vincent Doublet, Maureen Labarussias, Joachim R. deMiranda, Robin F.A. Moritz. Bees under stress: sublethal doses of a neonicotinoid pesticide and pathogens interact to elevate honey bee mortality across the life cycle. 2014 doe:10.1111/1462-2920.12426
  12. Wanyi Zhu, Daniel R. Schmehl, Christopher A Mullin, James L Frazier "Four common pesticides, their mixtures and a formulation solvent in the hive environment have high oral toxicity to honey bee larvae" PlosOne Jan 8, 2014
  13. Caroline de Almeida Rossi, Thaisa Cristina Roat, Daiana Antonia Tavares, Brain Morpophysiology of Africanized Bee Apis mellifera Exposed to Sublethal Doses of Imadacloprid. Arch Environ Contam Toxicol 7 April 2013.
  14. Mary J. Palmer, Christopher Moffat, Nastja Saranzewa, Jenni Harvey. Cholinergic pesticides cause mushroom body neuronal inactivation in honey bees. Nature. 27 March 2013
  15. Regiane Alves Oliveira, Thaisa Cristina Road, Stephan Malfitano Carvalho, Osmar Malaspina, Side Effects of Thiamethosam on the Brain and Midgut of the Africanized honeybee Apis mellifera Wiley Periodicals, 2013
  16. Gennaro DiPrisco, Valeria Cavaliere, Desiderato Annoscia et al. "Neonicotinoid clothianidin adversely affects insect immunity and promotes replication of a viral pathogen in honey bees" national Academy of Sciences of the United States.
  17. Sally Williamson and Geraldine Wright, "Exposure to multiple cholinergic pesticides impairs olfactory learning and memory in honey bees." Journal of Experimental Biology 2013
  18. Jeroen P VanderSluijs, Noa Simon-Delso, Dave Goulson, Laura Maxim, Jean-MarcBonmatin, Luc P. Belzunes. "Neonicotinoids, bee disorders and the sustainability of pollinator services." Current Opinion Environmental Sustainability 2013
  19. Jeffrey S Pettis et al. "Crop Pollination Exposes Honey Bees to Pesticides Which Alters Their Susceptability to the Gut Pathogen Nosema Ceranae". 2013 PlosOne
  20. Dave Goulson: "An overview of the environmental risks posed by neonicotinoid pesticides." Journal of Applied Ecology 2013
  21. Rosemary Mason, Henk Tennekes, Francisco Sanchez-Bayo; "Immune Suppression by Neonicotinoid Insecticides at the Root of Global Wildlife Declines." Journal of Environmental Immunology. 2013
  22. Van Dijk, Tessa C, Van Staalduinen, Marja A, Van de Sluijs, Jeroen P. "Macro-Invertebrate Decline in Surface Water Polluted with Imadacloprid." May 2013 PLOS ONE
  23. Gill, Richard J, Ramos-Rodrigues, Oscar, & Raine, Nigel E. "Combined pesticide exposure severely affects individual - and colony - level traits in bees." Nature 2012
  24. Tappara, A. Marton,D. Gioria, C. Zanella, A. Solda, L. Marzaro, M. Vivan, L. Girolami, V. (2012) “Assessment of the environmental exposure of honeybees to particulate matter containing neonicotinoid insecticides coming from corn coated seeds”
  25. Krupke, C.H. Hunt, G.J. Eitzer, B.D. Andino, G. Given, K (2012) “Multiple routes of pesticide exposure for honey bees living near agricultural fields”
  26. Toshiro Yamada Kazuko Yamada Naoko Wada "Influence of Dinotefuran and Clothianidin on a Bee Colony. Graduate School of Natural Science & Technology, Kanazawa (Japan) University
  27. Mickael Henry et al: A common pesticide decreases foraging success and survival in honey bees. 2012
  28. Jeffrey Pettis, Dennis vanEngelsdorp, Josepine Johnson, Galen Dively Pesticide exposure in honey bees results in  increased levels of the gut pathogen Nosema. Naturwissenschaften 3 January, 2012
  29. Cedric Alaux, Jean-Luc Brunet and Yves Le Conte "Interactions between Nosema microspores and  neonicotnoid weakened honey bees" Environmental Microbiology, March 2010
  30. Aliouane et al "Subchronic exposure to sub-lethal doses of pesticide: effects on behaviour" Environmental Toxology and Chemistry 2009

Summary of Findings: Health Canada

Update on neonicotinoid pesticides and bee health Nov. 2014

Evaluation of Canadian Bee Mortalities in 2013 Related to Neonicotinoid Pesticides

Evaluation of Canadian Bee Mortalities that Coincided with  Corn Planting in Spring 2012

Government and NGO reports:

  1. Neonicotinoids in  Quebec

  2. Xerces Society: Beyond the Birds and Bees

  3. Report from the European Parliament on Pesticide Research

  4. UK Parliamentary environmental audit

  5. Xerces Society Are Neonicotinoids Killing Bees?

  6. Congressional Research Service. Bee Health: The Role of Pesticides

  7. Pesticides and Honey Bees: State of the  Science

  8. The Impact of the Nation's Most Widely Used Insecticides on Birds. The American Bird Conservatory


  1. video on bees and pesticides

  2.     From Earth Focus: Video on neonicotinoids

  3.     From The Disappearance of the Bees video

  4.     Dan Rather reports on neonicotinoids and the EPA