Definition of neonicotinoid in English:



  • A systemic agricultural insecticide resembling nicotine.

    ‘studies have found a link between neonicotinoids and declining bee populations’
    • ‘A second study at the National Institute for Agricultural Research in France found that honeybees exposed to thiamethoxam, another neonicotinoid, were more than twice as likely to die outside their hives.’
    • ‘They are both neonicotinoids and are applied directly to the seed by commercial seed treaters.’
    • ‘Neonicotinoids bind irreversibly to receptors in the central nervous system of insects.’
    • ‘Scientists are also in two minds about the potential harm of neonicotinoids, with some claiming that the actual doses used in the wild aren't enough to do any bee-related damage.’
    • ‘New studies have strongly suggested that a class of pesticides, neonicotinoids, which are used to kill sucking insects such as aphids by paralysing their nerves, could be responsible for declining global bee populations.’
    • ‘In general, compounds known as pyrethroids and neonicotinoids were the best performers, according to the researchers.’
    • ‘A new breed of insecticides known as the neonicotinoids has been grabbing headlines recently; research indicates links to the collapse of honeybee colonies.’
    • ‘A team at Scotland's University of Stirling fed bee colonies with doses of imidacloprid, a neonicotinoid used on maize and oilseed rape.’
    • ‘Goulson and his colleagues exposed developing bumblebee colonies to a neonicotinoid called imidacloprid in doses comparable to what they might find in the wild.’


1990s: from neo- + nicotinoid, a type of compound chemically related to nicotine.