‘The bee is more honored than other animals, not because she works, but because she fights for others “ -. Chrysostom
Not only is the humble bee pollinating an amazing, responsible for helping the growth of some of our favorite treats, including coffee and chocolate, but it is the only insect in the world to produce food that humans can eat.
In the last two decades, research has shown that this worker amazing creature – once described by Earthwatch as ‘ most invaluable species on the planet ‘ – is in rapid decline. Since 2006, commercial bee population of the US has suffered a loss of 40%, with the United Kingdom report an even greater loss of only 45% since 2010 .
What this decrease could mean for us
a devastating impact on our food supply
Bees are responsible for pollinating many of our key crops of fruits and vegetables. In fact, without their help more than a third of our supply of crops could be endangered . Without the worker bees, you might have to say goodbye to almonds, apples, apricots, blueberries, strawberries, tomatoes and zucchini to name just a few. Worse, with such a fall in food supply, we could fight to keep our global population.
An increase in the cost of food production
If you do not have bees cross for us pollination, it is possible that the work is done by hand – a labor intensive and financially draining task, an estimated potential cost of 265 billion € per year in worldwide . That translates to some fruits and vegetables very expensive for consumers! Of course, this is not a true estimate that in the case of bees and their pollination techniques naturally disappear completely, their services might be impossible to replace.
a serious effect on wild flowers and animal life
Approximately 250,000 species of flowering plants depend on bees to help pollinate. Without these incredible insects, many wildflowers and other plants would struggle to reproduce. As these flowers and berries are often a source of food for insects, birds and small mammals, could have serious consequences for the survival of such creatures. In turn, the larger predators find their food supply and also affected struggle to survive.
A world without honey
While the other effects of a decrease in our population of bees are much more alarming, it is worth remembering that this ancient natural sweetener – with number of health benefits that is said to bring – it could be lost forever.
What’s happening to all the bees?
Experts cite a variety of different causes for the loss of these noble creatures, including:
The use of insecticides
is believed to be responsible for the most dramatic losses of honeybee colonies worldwide, found pesticides to be present in pollen and nectar, means that these chemicals are ingested by bees and other pollinators. Pesticides affect bees in a number of ways including its development rate, feeding behavior and even to affect their learning process through neurotoxins that impact their ability to flower and recognition nest with navigation skills. In addition, insecticides compromise your immune system, making them more vulnerable to diseases and parasites. The possible effects of these chemicals have on our own health should also be a concern. This short video by the Network Pesticide Action Europe shows how the seeds coated insecticides (which scale is commonly used today in agriculture for pest control) are contributing to a environment that is toxic to bees.
The destruction of the natural habitat
Both through urbanization and the growing need for more agricultural land, we are systematically destroying our forests, grasslands, forests, fields and hedgerows – all natural habitats of pollinators. This is believed to be a main cause of the decline of wild bee populations as well as being responsible for a drop in the number of other species of plants and animals.
The Environmental United Nations (UNEP) Program believes that the effects of climate change – rising temperatures, fluctuations in rainfall and extreme weather conditions in general more – have an impact on life expectancy and practices of pollinators. This global warming can also affect the natural synchronization between bees and the life cycles of plants.
Given that insecticides are cited as the main cause of the decline of bees, a switch to organic farming is the logical first step. Organic farmers work with nature and the seasons to grow their crops without the use of harmful pesticides supporting both biodiversity and bee . Take a trip to the local farmer’s market, meet the people who grow their food and admire the variety of local and seasonal fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs. Pre-packaged store-bought products never look the same again, and the purchase of the ecological benefits of bees, local farmers, the environment and your health!
Practice organic gardening at home
bee-killing chemicals are not only found in industrial practices, but also in many household insecticides. Be sure to use only certified organic seeds, herbicides and insect repellents or, better yet, make your own. Why not check out these great ways Remove the 8 common garden pests Naturally ; these 8 Natural Ways To Kill Garden Weeds or these 10 Genius Tips for successful organic gardening Gardeners most inveterate out there might even consider providing all appropriate conditions for promote a diverse and balanced ecosystem in your garden promoting a variety of birds, butterflies, pollinators, and other wild animals in order to keep pests under control, the way nature intended.
plant bee-friendly flowers and shrubs
attract these creatures of great value to filling your garden with vibrant and bee-friendly plants. Not only will you be greeted with a variety of colors when you step outside your door, but you can enjoy beautiful aromas, fresh seasonal flowers for your kitchen table and organic herbs picked straight from the garden . If you’re stuck for space, try to plant some in your balcony in window boxes or hanging baskets – the bees will thank you! ideal plants include hawthorn, Portuguese Laurel, Winter honeysuckle, lilac, rosemary, lavender, fuchsia and Hortensia with the Beekeepers Association of Great Britain provide list .
Only buy local honey
Buy local organic honey, rather than supermarket brands mass produced. Your local beekeepers are much more likely to worry about the health and well-being of their bees that companies large productions, which only focus on their bottom line. Not only will it keep your food miles down and support local businesses, but eating local honey can also help prevent seasonal allergies .
You can find a local supplier of honey using this smart online tool.
become a beekeeper
This is definitely not for everyone! a certain type of person who wants to dress from head to toe in protective clothing and spend their day around the errors that inevitably will give them a bite or two is needed. But if you are interested in learning firsthand how these captivating creatures contribute to our world, and are concerned with conservation, then it might just be for you. The offer Beekeeping Federation of America free information on how to start beekeeping and the British Beekeepers’ Association even run beginners training programs .
Adopt a beehive