We all know what a bee is. We grew up learning that they produce honey and that they sting us so we should always be careful in their presence, but do we really know how important they are ?
All fruits and vegetables that we eat every day like avocados, peaches, broccoli, celery, cherries, melons, cranberries, cucumbers and so many more require pollination.Did you know that around 80% of all US crops depend on honey bees ? 80% percent. Do you realize what would happen if bees would become extinct ? You would probably not have so much time to think about it if they were because we would starve to death without them.They either play a part in the pollination of the food we eat directly like vegetables and fruits ,or pollinating the food that animals that we eat then consume.
Putting food aside, bees also provide honey and wax, two products very useful in our day-to-day life.Maurice Maeterlinck said “If the bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man would only have four years left to live.”
Even though they play such a big role in our life as a population, we do not take good enough care of them. Honey bees are disappearing all over the world at an alarming rate due to a lot of different problems. Pollution is bad for us and for bees as well but ,what is especially bad for them is the pollution that comes from diesel fuel. It takes away a bees’ ability to pick up on scents , which means they can’t find food sources and end up starving to death. Also, it has been reported that not only pesticides kill bees every day but much of the world’s honey now contains bee-harming pesticides as well.
Bees are so important to us ,so how can you help them ? If you have a garden or a yard, plant bee-friendly flowers or flowering herbs like lavender ,sage,rosemary,sunflowers,mint, poppies. Bees are losing habitats all around the world so ,just planting flowers in your garden can help them have a place to say and food to eat.Don’t use chemicals and pesticides for your garden as that will harm them.A lot of honeybees are thirsty so you can put a small basin of fresh water outside your home .Another great idea that can help bees is buying local,raw honey. This helps local beekeepers stay in business and ,if they expand, they can take care of more bees thus helping the population of these wonderful insects grow.
One of the most important things to know about bees is that they are not the villains we make them out to be. Honeybees are vegetarian. They want to forage pollen and nectar from flowers. They travel up to three miles in order to bring back food to provide for their hives. They are not out to sting people.By staying calm when a bee is around you and not attacking or scaring them ,they will see that you are not a threat to them and will fly away. They just want not to be bothered , same as us.
We need them in our life just as much as they need us not to disturb their homes or poison their food. By ensuring their well-being , we ensure our source of food so the next time you think about harming bees in any way ,you need to think that you are also harming yourself and the entire human species .There is this Congo proverb that sums it all up “When the bee comes to your house,let her have beer; You may want to visit the bee’s house some day”.