The Importance of Bees and What You Can Do To Help
Bees and insects might not be your favourite when having food or drinks outside, but they are vital to our eco systems and food, in fact, honeybees underpin the sustenance of life on planet earth. You might have heard already that bees are under threat, and that this could be a major problem. Bees are the world’s most important pollinator of food crops; it is estimated that one third of the food that we consume each day relies on pollination mainly by bees. These food crops would not be here if the bees disappeared. Bees also play an important role in the pollination of other important crops such as cotton and flax as well as clover and alfalfa which is used to feed cattle.
Besides pollinating crops, bees also pollinate wild plants. The importance of wild plants is huge, as wild plants are major components of biodiversity. Because they are a source of food to insects, birds and small animals, they are the basis of nature. Without these plants and flowers, key players in the ecosystem would disappear. Not only would there be no milk, meat and other foods coming from animals, we would also lack oxygen.
Honeybees of course also produce honey with the nectar they extract. Honey carries many health benefits and is an important food. Not only is honey used as food or an ingredient in for example bee pollen, it is also an important item in beauty and skincare products, again providing great benefits.
Besides the obvious benefits for food and health and beauty related items made with honey, bee farms are also a great source of employment. Bees therefore play a huge role in food production, health and employment and are therefore vital in our society.
The main reason why bees are disappearing is due to habitat loss and toxic pesticides. These are all caused by humans, and therefore we can also make sure to minimize this and protect the bees.
What you can do to help:
You can plants a lot of bee friendly flowers in your garden. There is a wide range of florin plants which can grow easily with seedballs and bee mixes. You can get a mix of bee and butterfly friendly seeds for a good price anywhere in garden stores or online. It is very easy to plant these as you only need to spread the seeds on the soil and let nature do the rest. Almost no effort and in the summer months your garden will be full of lovely coloured flowers and wildlife, win-win!
If you don’t mind having bees close by for a longer period, you could provide shelter for bees, where they can nest and hibernate. You can create your own or bee hotel really easily by getting a wooden box and fill it with hollow stems such as old flower stalks or bamboo canes. Alternatively, you could also buy a bee hotel online.
Next, if you see a bee on a ground, that might look nearly dead, it is often exhausted and in need of a little boost. You can help them by mixing 2 tablespoons of white granulated sugar with a tablespoon of water. Place it near the bee so it can help itself to a little energy drink.
Lastly, of course don’t use pesticides in your garden, which is a major threat to bees. There are often natural ways to help grow your garden beautifully without using pesticides.