Generally a person’s first reaction to seeing a bee is to run away or swat at it. Which is understandable, as they can sting on occasion. But honey bees play a very important role in the circle of life.
If it weren’t for them our crop production would drastically decline. In fact, bees contribute one third of global crop production! So it’s safe to say that these little insects do a whole lot more than just buzz around. Better think twice before harming one of these guys. (1)
Unfortunately, despite our best efforts to keep our hands to ourselves, the US honey bee population is steadily declining. (2)
What You Can Do To Help Save The Bees
The most important factor in keeping bees healthy, happy, and thriving, is proper nutrition. Yep, even these tiny guys need a substantial diet! Poor nutrition can be harmful to a bee’s immune system which makes them more vulnerable to diseases and pesticides. (2)
So what can you do to help? It’s simple!
Beekeepers often feed their bees sugar and research has shown that it helps them live longer and survive better. While bees can’t survive on sugar alone, sugar can help give them the boost that they need to get the necessary nectar and pollen. (3)
If you want to become bee ally, all you have to do is leave out a spoon of sugar-water on your lawn. Mix a tablespoon of white, granulated sugar with a tablespoon of water and leave it somewhere on your property. Although it sounds a bit silly, the bees will find it, drink it, and get the energy that they need to return to the hive and keep working.
You can also go the extra mile and take a spoon of sugar water to a bee that looks tired and sluggish. This solution will revive the bee enough to head on home. This simple method is a cheap and easy way to become a silent hero.
Other Bee-Saving Techniques
- Buy organic food. Choosing to purchase organic food from local farmers helps to support farm practices that avoid toxic pesticides and promote a healthy ecosystem.
- Don’t use pesticides. Bees are helpful to your garden, and using pesticides can be harmful to them. There are plenty of natural alternatives to keep away unwanted pests from your yard.
- Plant flowers. Fill your yard with flowers of all different colors, shapes, and bloom times. This way bees can get the nutrients they need throughout the entire season.
- Buy local, raw honey. Besides the fact that raw honey is delicious, it’s a great way to support your local beekeepers. You can also find providers that make donations to bee preservations.
- Spread the word! Teach your kids to distinguish honey bees from other harmful insects and to not harm them, let your neighbors know about the sugar-water trick, and share this article with your friends!
We would be in serious trouble without our friendly bee buddies! Do your part in taking care of these little fellows. It only takes a spoon and some sugar to become a real bee hero.