Almost as concerning as what is known about neonics, is what is not. There is little data about the quantities of systemic pesticides being applied, nor is there much screening of concentrations of neonics in the environment. Where screening has been carried out neonics and fipronil are often detected.

  • Toxicity to most organisms has not been investigated. E.g. toxicity tests have only been carried out on four of the approximately 25,000 known species of bee, and there have been hardly any studies of toxicity to other pollinator groups such as hoverflies or butterflies.
  • Toxicity to vertebrates (such as granivorous mammals and birds which are likely to consume dressed seeds) has only been examined in a handful of species.
  • Sub-lethal effects have not been studied in most organisms, yet they are known to be profound in bees, and for those few other species where studies have been done, sub-lethal doses of these neurotoxic chemicals have been reported to have (mostly) adverse impacts on behaviour at doses well below those that cause death.