The above statistics and information are alarming, and should not be taken lightly. Here are 10 ways that you can help to stop the disappearance of the humble bee:
- Support Local Organic Farmers
Given that insecticides are cited as being the main cause of bee decline, a switch to organic farming is the first logical step. Organic farmers work with nature and the seasons to grow their crops, without the use of harmful pesticides, supporting both biodiversity and the bee.
Take a trip to your local Farmer’s Market, meet the people who grow your food and admire the sheer variety of local and in-season fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs. Pre-packaged store bought produce will never look the same again, and buying organic benefits the bees, local farmers, the environment and your health!
- Practice Organic Gardening At Home
Bee-killing chemicals are not only found in industrial practices, but also in many household insecticides too. Make sure to use only certified organic seeds, weed-killers and insect repellents or, better yet, make your own.
The more hard-core gardeners out there might even consider providing all the right conditions to foster a diverse and balanced ecosystem in their garden, encouraging an array of birds, butterflies, pollinators, and other wildlife in order to keep pests under control, the way that nature intended.
Take a look at our Gardening Archives for more organic gardening tips and ideas.
- Plant Bee Friendly Flowers & Plants
Attract these invaluable creatures to your garden by filling it with vibrant and bee-friendly plants. Not only will you be greeted with an array of color when you step outside your door, but you’ll enjoy beautiful aromas, fresh seasonal flowers for your kitchen table and organic herbs picked straight from the garden.
- Buy Local Honey
Buy local organic honey as opposed to mass-produced supermarket brands. Your local beekeepers are far more likely to care about the health and wellbeing of their bees than large productions companies, who just focus on their bottom line. Not only will you keep your food miles down and support local businesses, but eating local honey may also help ward off seasonal allergies.
You can find a local honey supplier using this clever online tool.
- Become A Beekeeper
This one is definitely not for everybody! It takes a certain kind of person to want to dress head to toe in protective clothing and spend their day around bugs that will inevitably give them a sting or two. But if you’re interested in learning first-hand how these captivating creatures contribute to our world, and are concerned with conservation, then it just might be for you.
The American Beekeeping Federation offer free information on how to start beekeeping and the British Beekeepers’ Association even run beginners’ training programs.
- Adopt A Hive
If you’re not ready for the challenge of keeping bees, but are interested in saving these incredible creatures, then you can always ‘adopt a hive’. Contact your local beekeeper or national association to see if they offer this program.
- Set Up A Bee Refreshment Station
Now that you have rid your garden of nasty insecticides and are actively attracting pollinators through your choice of flowers and shrubs, it’s a good idea to set up a refreshment station for tired bees. After all the work they do, a bee can easily wear itself out and it’s not uncommon to see a lone bee lying on the ground, seemingly dead, as it tries to muster up the energy to find food and fresh water.
- Learn More About These Captivating Creatures
While no one wants to hear that the world’s bee population is under threat, many may baulk at the idea of actually attracting bees into their garden. However, it’s important to understand that, unlike wasps and hornets, bees are not aggressive and will not sting unless they feel under threat.
- Lobby On Behalf Of Bees
Unless there is major legislative change or public outcry, industrial farming will continue to use these bee-killing pesticides and destructive agricultural practices. Speak up to influence the governments and companies who can make these changes happen.
- Tell A Friend
Lastly but by no means least, help to raise awareness of the bees’ plight so that we can build awareness and work together to save the world’s hard working bees and our future food supplies!