Scientists have trained bees to play football in a bizarre study.
The insects learned how to “kick” the ball around a pitch and score goals.
They were rewarded with a sweetened drink each time they succeeded.
Researchers first showed them what to do by using a pretend bee — a piece of striped yellow and black plastic attached to a stick.
Other bees learned by watching those which had already been taught.
Playing one at a time, they had to push or pull the ball into a hole in the middle of the playing surface to get the reward.
They got quicker at scoring by improving their ball control as their training progressed.
Professor Lars Chittka, who led the Queen Mary University of London study, said it suggested bees would be able to adapt to changes in their natural environment.
He added: “Our study puts the final nail in the coffin of the idea small brains constrain insects to have only simple learning abilities.
“The bees seemed to enjoy playing with the ball and learned how to score very quickly — but I don’t think we’ll be seeing any of them playing at Wembley any time soon.”
Animal welfare groups blasted the study after it was revealed five of the 49 bees died from “natural causes” during it.
This article originally appeared on The Sun.
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