We need bees. There’s really no way to get around it. Here in the US, bees are responsible for pollinating 1/3 of our food supply, and that doesn’t just apply to fruits and veggies. Without bees, feed for livestock would be more scarce, causing higher prices for meat and dairy, as well.
Over the past several years, the world’s bee population has been in decline. Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) has claimed around 30% of the bee population each year both in the UK and the US. In the UK, beekepers held protests to raise awareness about the problem. While this year has seen some break-throughs in research to help save the waning bee population, like gene therapy and a vaccine to help prevent CCD, the bees still need our help! Here are some resources to get you started:
Over at Planetsave, Joe Mohr lists five things you can do to help save bees. He encourages you to put in beneficial plants, avoid pesticides, and maybe even try your hand at bee keeping!
Breathing Places at the BBC has a great list of ways to build bee homes for your garden. They break it down and show you which sorts of dwellings will attract which sorts of bees. Very handy!
Ehow shares some great tips for attracting honey bees. I especially like that they encourage you to rethink what you consider weeds in your garden. Not only do bees like hanging around certain plants that we consider weeds, pesticides are a prime suspect in causing CCD.
Have you been cultivating a bee sanctuary in your garden? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!
Bee. Creative Commons photo by Arnold Lane
Wildflowers. Creative Commons photo by Sleeping Bear