Over one third of crop production around the world is dependent on bee pollination yet bees have been dying at drastic rates over the past 50 years. You can help save the bees this month with Aloette while also helping women and men build businesses and sustainable incomes. This month Aloette has partnered with Heifer International and their Cafe Sano project to create beekeeping business opportunities in Guatemala while increasing the bee population.
WHY DO WE NEED TO SAVE THE BEES? I'm glad you asked!
Bees are some of the hardest working creatures on the planet, and because of their laborious work ethic, we owe many thanks to this amazing yet often under appreciated insect.
Globally there re about 25,000 species of bees with approximately 4,000 in the us alone. The species are divided into 4,000 genera of bees, and then subdivided into just nine families of bees. The Apidae family is perhaps the most well known family, with familiar members such as the honeybee, carpenter bee, and bumblebee.
All of these species dutifully serve as pollinators of our agricultural world. And they are all excellent at what they do. Bees have stiff hairs and pockets on their legs, which allow them to collect more pollen and be efficient transporters of it between plants. Bumblebees appear to be even more successful due to their larger sizes and more vigorous vibrations. This helps in dispersing pollen amongst the flowers and fruits it visits.
So what is pollination? Simply put, it is the transfer of pollen from the male part of the flower (anther) to the female (stigma) . Once the pollination has been completed, a plant’s seed, nut, or fruit is then formed. Pollination is essentially plant reproduction. Without help from the bees, our everyday food supply would look much different and at least one third of it would not be available. Foods like broccoli, asparagus, cantaloupes, cucumbers, pumpkins, blueberries, watermelons, almonds, apples, cranberries, and cherries would be negatively affected. Also the end of bees means the end of honey. We humans seem to be quite fond of this amber liquid – the 2013 honey crop was valued at $317.1 million.
Pollinating flowers and contributing to the beautification of the planet’s floral landscapes may be the bees’ perhaps simplest and least economically important actions, but it’s certainly its most aesthetically pleasing one. By keeping flowers pollinated, bees perpetuate floral growth and provide attractive habitats for other animals such as insects and birds.
Bees are easily amongst the most important insects to humans on Earth. These humble, buzzing bugs deserve a huge thanks – for helping provide us with our favorite fruits and vegetables, their delicious honey, and beautiful, flowery gardens!
Help up save the bees - Click here for more information.