Love your morning cup of coffee? Do you love to snack on chocolate or blueberries? Well, all those little luxuries are at risk of disappearing if the bee population continues to decline.
- Around 5% of bees produce honey but all bees are pollinators of various grains, fruit and vegetables
- There is some evidence that bees actually remember facial features on humans!
- In the United States, bees pollinate over $15 billion worth of crops each year
- Not all bees have stingers, there are many species that are sting-less including the Great Australian Carpenter Bee. In fact, male bees can’t sting at all.
What’s Happening to the Bees?
Since 2013 bee populations in some parts of the world have declined by as much as a third. Some experts believe that if bees were wiped out of existence, humans would have four years left to live. It might sound dramatic but imagine a world with no crops for cattle to eat and no fruits, nuts or vegetables for humans to eat. So, what’s killing the bees? It’s a combination of climate change and dangerous pesticides and herbicides on crops and plants that kill the bees. Bees do the bulk of their work during warmer months but are susceptible to dehydration and with average global temperatures rising, bees are dying quicker than before.
What Can You Do?
While saving an entire species might seem like a monumental task, there are little things you can do to help keep our bee population healthy. Firstly, planting an insect friendly herb garden in your yard is like medicine for bees! Plants like basil, thyme, mint and parsley are great for bees and also provide you with some tasty herbs. In warmer months, leaving a small dish of water somewhere for bees to rest and hydrate (in the shade is even better!) will help keep them happy and healthy. One of the best things you can do to help bees and the honey industry is to purchase local honey. Large brands tend to dilute their honey with sweeteners and other chemicals so you’re not actually getting 100% honey. Alternatively, if you’re feeling confident, why not try your hand at beekeeping? It’s a fun hobby and also a great way to educate others about the importance of bees.
If you want more information check out our post last year on #savethebees.