The honeybee spends its day gathering pollen and nectar to take back to the hive. In a single trip a honeybee will visit anywhere from 50-100 flowers.
Transferring pollen between all these flowers is called cross-pollination. It’s what fertilizes the plant and allows it to produce fruits and vegetables.
Bees are responsible for pollinating, orchards, wildlife habitats and many of our food crops.
It is estimated that the honeybee contributes anywhere from $33 - $82 billion annually to our global food economy by pollinating these crops.
These same crops are sprayed with various pesticides to “protect” the plants from insects and increase crop yield. But these pesticides contaminate the pollen that the bees collect and use for food.
When a bee brings contaminated pollen back to the hive, it can poison a whole colony resulting in a phenomenon known as Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD).
Indicators of Colony Collapse include an absence of adult worker bees in the colony but the presence of food stores and larvae.
Studies have shown that the leading cause of CCD is due to the use of a particular group of pesticides called neonicotinoids, known to be highly toxic to bees. Side effects include memory disorientation and immunity and reproductive impairments.
When a bee's memory is impaired, they can have trouble finding their way back to the hive. Many leave the hive in search of food and don't return, or become sick and die from poor immune systems.
Without the bees many of our main food crops would die off, and our gardens and wildlife habitats would begin to diminish, and yet the continued use of these pesticides is causing the bee population to plummet at a rapid pace.
You can help save the bees!
- Sign this petition to ban the use of these pesticides
- Avoid the use of insecticides in your own garden
- Read labels carefully – some garden composts and plant seeds you purchase may contain insecticides.
- Help increase bee habitats by creating some natural garden space in your yard. Plant some wildflowers or build a ‘bee box’ for bees to call home.
And remember, there's more to bees than just their honey!