We can understand why people might ask this question. After all, they are treated as annoying and buzzing, also tend to make us jump up in fear when they approach. Well you can’t be further away from the truth. Bees are more harmless and important than you think.
In fact, bees are vital to our survival, but we often take them for granted.
Honey bees pollinate 70 of 100 crops that feed 90 percent of the world’s population. Without honey bees, we wouldn’t have chocolate, coffee, almonds, avocados, cucumbers, kiwis and the list goes on. Yes you read that right. Without them you wouldn’t have your fresh everyday cup of coffee or your favourite late night chocolate snack. Bees are responsible for one-third of the food we eat. So the next time you’re indulging on your favourite chocolate bar, remember to say thanks to all the bees that made that possible.
Not only do these native insects pollinate our food supply, they also provide us with honey, wax and other products used in everything from skin care products to candles.
If that alone is not enough to change your mind on bees, here is one more reason. They also pollinate many of the trees and flowers which provide habitats for wildlife – from birds to butterflies – as well as helping to create new habitats for birds like sparrows and starlings by creating holes in hedges or walls for birds to nest in. These little pollinators also help maintain biodiversity by providing seeds that can be dispersed across long distances. Their importance to our ecosystem can’t be overstated. And they’re part of a complex ecosystem that supports other organisms for food and shelter.
Bee Population On A Decline
Now that you know the importance of the bees, you need to be aware that our little friends are in trouble. More than ever before, we need to recognise the importance of bees to nature and to our lives.
The problem is so serious that some experts have called it “the sixth mass extinction”. The honeybee population has declined dramatically over the last decade — declining by 60% since 1945. This decline is largely due to pesticides and loss of habitat caused by urban development, but also because of climate change (hotter temperatures make it harder for bees to fly).
But don’t worry there is a way to help our little friends. And it’s rather simple.
How Can We Help The Bees
Plant more flowers
Bees need nectar and pollen to survive, so the best way to help them is by planting flowers that bloom all season long. If you don’t have a green thumb, there are plenty of plants you can buy at nurseries or garden shops that will provide bees with food. Or choose seeds with names like “bee friendly” or “pollinator.”
Avoid insecticides and weed killers when possible.
This speaks for itself and it’s rather straightforward. Many commercial insecticides kill bees outright when sprayed on crops or lawns — as well as other beneficial insects like butterflies, ladybugs and lacewings.
Provide water sources for thirsty bees
Bees don’t just drink nectar; they also need water! You can provide fresh water sources for thirsty bees by adding bird baths or small ponds filled with rainwater where they can take a dip as needed while collecting the nectar.