Today is World Honey Bee day and so there is no better time to be creating a bit buzz around the danger this species is in and why it is detrimental to the survival of the human race.
So, let's take this opportunity to understand a little more about our beloved stripy, black and yellow friend.
The honey bee is one of nature's most numerous and efficient pollinators, which is what the vast majority of plants rely on for reproduction. If plants are unable to reproduce effectively, then plants cease to be. And, if plants cease to be then so do we. Put simply, we need bees to survive. They are a crucial cog in the natural order of the world and while we humans carry on with a scant disregard for our environment, our existence still very much depends on it.
However, these vital supporters of life are being eradicated at somewhat alarming rates. According to this report, in the UK there has been an overall decline in wild and honey bees over the past 50 years. The main contributing factors to the falling numbers of these proficient and crucial pollinators are; disease and parasites (such as the Varroa mite), habitat loss, climate change and pesticides. Governments must implement responsible legislation around pesticide use and we need to protect natural habitats. This includes in our gardens, where we can plant flowers that attract the bees and ensure that we don't use harsh chemicals.