hope this helps
Keeping bees is cool but saving the bees is a vast and complex issue, so not just domestic honey bees but also the speices of native wild bees needs to be saved. I think the best thing you can do is ensure that there is enough bee food out there so to service the bees in your area. plant flowers, plant flowers plant flowers
hope this helps
when it comes to saving the bees, and certainly through our Facebook page people have asked some interesting questions . but I was staggered when someone asked what we can do to save the bees that is 100 per cent guaranteed to work.
I believe the big problem here is agriculture and land management. So my answer is simple: plant flowers and have less children. That's it. Limit humans and we limit the problem. It is controversial I know but it is the only solution that I know will work. Thoughts?
Let me explain further what I am banging on about here Pretty much worldwide the arable land is ALL (>80%)used for farming- That is to feed us today.We are doubling in population every 30 years.. yep thats right 3 billion more mouths to feed every 30 years. We have improved farming techniques to increase populations and reduced the amount of natural habitat that support bees and other plant and animal species. In order to really elicit change we need to encourage the world through sensible family planning to diminish in number. Other countries that fail to adopt sensible population management strategies should be restricted with trade embargoes and other political actions. Individual action is not enough and whilst we each can to our part to assist we need to act as a collective whole to affect real change. This is a global issue and not an individual one and needs to be addressed as such.
Now people dont like being told to not have children, we have been genetically engineered over the eons to have more children so this is by definition unnatural. but will appropriate government policies and financial incentives from governments we can solve this problem (and probably a bunch of other problems too)
I hope we get some comments here as this is a controversial issue and i want a debate
in my fact I had a recommendation to remove existing grasses with a herbicide such a roundup. THe commentary I received from many of our fans is that:
1: roundup is a poison that is killing the bees.
2. Roundup sticks around in the environment for a long time
3. some people just hate roundup!
So I thought it a good idea to provide a little education. Firstly roundup is a glycophosphate herbicide.
Herbicides kill grasses and plants. This generally works by attacking a plants growth mechanisms. Animals and insects do not have these particular mechanisms so largely are unaffected by these herbicides.
Secondly there is an issue of concentration. Chemicals have to be present is sufficient concentration to work. so a herbicide present in tiny amounts below its effective concentration will not work. And there are literally millions of potentially dangerous chemicals present in all things in trace amounts all the time around us and we do not get sick from them,
For example cyanide. This is present in almonds in trace amounts and you would have to eat a large amount (several KG) to get a lethal dose. Same goes for pesticides and herbicides. in really small amounts it is no big deal.
at the moment the neonicotinoid debate rages on. THe current thinking is small amounts of neonics interfere with the foraging abilities of the bee. This may be possible but again we are talking about really small amounts of pesticides (not roundup) that are potentially causing this. I am skeptical as this is a very hard thing to test. As how do you measure foraging ability? or the ingested amounts of the trace neonics. It seems to me that loss of habitat and lack of biodiversity are more likely culprits
Hence my third point. Roundup is hated by many of you. It is just a herbicide that does a job. I wont comment upon Monsanto or gmos or other things as these are not important to saving the bees. you can destroy grasses alot of ways and roundup just happens to be the most popular.But if you hate it, just flip or till or burn or use another herbicide if that floats your boat. Roundup is the most heavily scrutinized commercially available herbicide around, it has undergone extensive testing in most countries it is sold in and and is recommended by independent government bodies.
And that is the science, backed up by hard fact and continual scrutiny
there is alot of information out there and alot of it is bad. Since starting this site I have found that alot of people dont necessarily understand the colony collapse dissorder (ccd) phenomenon.
What we do know is this. the number of bee colonies is in decline worldwide. It is postulated that the cause of this is due to 3 factors:
1. neonicotinoids pesticides are killing bees by screwing with their bees navigation systems.
2. Land usage is reducing the number of nectar producing plants out there so the bees are starving
3. agricultural corridors are create a "bee food Desert" interrupting migration patterns of bees and again starving them.
that's it really.
I have had one guy trying to link fracking to bee decline......
yep FRACKING!!! WTF!(what the frack!!)
This fracking issue has nothing to do with bees in reality, just a well intention green thinker whom clearly doesnt understand the issues of CCD.
Others have proposed GMO giant Monsanto being responsible.. Monsanto makes herbicides yes but neonicotinoids are made by BASF and not Monsanto. so again another very tenuous link.. this one reaking of anticorp slogans.
the green movement needs to get scientifically literate quickly and stop trying to lump specific issues to a single cause.
this site is for people trying to make a difference. keep your politics at home and your brain engaged.
Honey bees, Bumblebees and Solitary bees all need pollen and nector to thrive, so creating 'bee-friendly' habitats within gardens, public spaces, farmlands and nature reserves, is crucial to their day-to-day survial.
Here’s a list of 15 plants to consider if you’d like to help save the bees.
Note: It’s best to plant native plants. Find a native plant nursery in your area and download the BeeSmart app, which will guide you in selecting plants for pollinators specific to your area.
Purchase plants or seeds that haven’t been treated in pesticides, which can kill the bees.
Lavender. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock1. Lavandula spp. (Lavender)
2. Rosemarinus officinalis (Rosemary)
3. Salvia spp. (Sage)
4. Echinacea spp. (Coneflower)
5. Helianthus spp. (Sunflower)
6. Cercis spp. (Redbud)
7. Nepeta spp. (Catnip)
8. Penstemon spp. (Penstemon)
9. Stachys spp. (Lamb’s ears)
10. Verbena spp. (Verbena)
11. Phacelia spp. (Bells or Phacelia)
12. Aster spp. (Aster)
13. Rudbeckia spp. (Black-eyed Susan)
14. Origanum spp. (Oregano)
15. Achilliea millefolium (Yarrow
Pollination by bees is crucial to our continued food supplies, so the right types of trees, shrubs and plants makes all the difference.
One of the easiest ways to help the various types of bees is to choose to grow flowers & plants in your garden that bees love - and there is a huge variety to choose from.
Providing even just one bee house or nesting box is fun and easy to do and will provide invaluable winter shelter for hibernating Queen bees, plus a home during the busy spring and summer months.
Lastly,planting or replacing some of your lawn with a bee friendly lawn. It doesn't have to be(ee) your back yard but perhaps your nature strip?
Bees are having a hard time, but we can all do our bit to help save the bees. You do not need to become a beekeeper. Indeed, many other pollinators (not just honey bees) are in serious decline too.
For example, in some countries, like the UK, some bumblebee species have gone extinct already. Many butterfly species are also struggling.
Many of the steps you can take will help pollinators as a whole, as well as the bees.
We need our bees, and putting a stop to bee decline is in everyone's best interests, and everyone really can do at least something. Having compaigned for several years, I have noticed how awareness has increased greatly, and people are generally trying to help bees by including bee-friendly plants in their gardens, or in pots or hanging baskets by the front door. So......
You CAN make a difference - and collectively we make a BIG difference!
.....and here are some tips to help set you on your way to doing just that!
HELP SAVE THE BEES - CREATE HABITAT!
There is much you can do in your own gardens to help save the bees! Ensure you have flowers and plants in bloom for as long as possible in the garden. Some bee species may come out early, and will be looking for much needed pollen and nectar sources provided by spring bulbs such as narcissus and crocuses. Pussy willow and herbs such as rosemary are also useful. Remember, some bees will continue foraging late into the season too, so try to ensure you include late flowering blooms in your garden, such as winter heathers. Take a look at the following link (opens new window) featuring calendarised lists of great bee plants.
You could also make efforts to purchase plants, bulbs and seeds free of neonicotinoid and systemic insecticides - more about this below. These pesticides are used widely in Holland, a major supplier to garden centers, grocery multiples and other plant sellers. Why not establish a relationship with a local nursery or grower you can trust, and ask them whether or not they are using these products. Many conservation charities are asking for a suspension of these pesticides, and for an overhaul of the regulatory system. As of August 2013, I'm not aware of a full ban on any of these produces - merely some temporary restrictions to some of these chemicals in certain circumstances. This applies particularly to the EU and you can read more about it here and the global scenario here.
Another option is to purchase your plants, bulbs and seeds from organic suppliers.
Remember too that a supply of water and mud are useful. Some bees, such as Mason bees, use mud for constructing their nests.
The negative effects of chemical-intensive agriculture become more and more apparent.The global bees-decline is just a symptom of a failed industrial agricultural system based on ever increasing chemical and energy inputs, large-scale monoculture and dependency from few multinational agri-companies. Growing pest and weed resistance, decreasing soil fertility, widespread water contamination, increasing CO2 emissions and vulnerability to climate change, as well as a systemic loss of resilience, diversity and sovereignty in the global food production press us to make the transformational change towards biodiversity based ecological farming syste
The ‘Leave it and See’ Approach
There may be wildflower seeds of native species in the ground from years gone by. To achieve this approach is simple: