And finally… busy bees

Honey bees could be deployed to detect drugs and explosives as early as five years from now, according to a university researcher.

Senior researcher Ross Gillanders at the University of St Andrews is training bees to search for land mines by tricking the bees into thinking they smell like nectar, The Times reports.

According to his experiments, the bees can currently “detect the land mines from about 100 metres’ distance, but that should go up to kilometres”.

Bees have previously been used to map radioactive material near Chernobyl, and a previous US study used bees to detect TNT and C-4 explosives.

Mr Gillanders said the research was promising – but admitted he had also been stung dozens of times in the process.

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