WHY ARE BEES VANISHING?
Bees however small and unimportant they may feel to us are actually an extremely vital species within nature and its ecosystems. The recent bee decline has had many negative effects on not only nature but the environment and mankind too. There are many varieties of bee species in which some are already endangered at risk the threat of extinction due to numerous reasons that will be discussed in this article. The bees dying out has to lead to scientists and researchers investigating the further causes as well as ways that we can act to save the remainder of the bee population. The problem with this is not only the fact that bees are vanishing but that they are vanishing at an alarmingly rapid rate which is a massive cause of concern for habitats and communities all around the world.
BEES ENDANGERED SPECIES
So the question still remains are bees endangered and which bees are going extinct? Believe it or not, there are already seven or more species of bees on the endangered list, meaning that their population has drastically decreased and they are at risk of endangerment. These 7 species of bees endangered include
- Rusty Patch Bumble Bee
- Hawaiin Yellow-faced bees
These bees have been added to the endangered species list and both in very current times which strongly suggests that not enough is being done to protect and conserve the remainder of the bee population.
WHAT IS KILLING THE BEES?
There are many causes of bee decline and reasons as to why are bees going extinct, all of which have had some seriously negative consequences on the state of the agricultural market, economy, nature’s pollination system, quality of life ad much much more. Some of the reasons as to why we are witnessing this decline in the bee population include
Habitat loss is one of the biggest causing of bee decline as it means bees have less shelter and availability to resources that allow them to thrive and carry out their duties within nature’s natural cycle. This habitat loss is a result of the increased changes that have been made to our lands for the use of urban development, the building of homes, factories, roads, and communities as well as the farming sector which has largely developed and grown in the past decade. Bees habitats are pollinator-friendly and very specific and when these habitats begin to decrease bees are left with nowhere to go to be able to perform the pollination process needed for reproduction. Bees need many flowers to be able to forage, which not only helps sustain that species of flower but also the bee itself.
Farming and the development of modern-day methods have had a drastic impact on the loss of bee species, this is because they have replaced traditional methods such as flower meadows, ponds, and trees with the increased use of chemicals and pesticides. This means that the bees can no longer use these crops or pieces of land to pollinate and has also caused massive disruption to many wildlife ecosystems as a result.
Changes in the use of land
Nowadays especially as the population has increased and countries have begun to further develop, land that was once inhabited by nature which of course includes bees has been transformed into parts of cities, towns, and roads, damaging the natural land that bees are used to living in. Without these natural structures, bees are unable to perform their duties as pollinators which in turn affects the entire wildlife system, vegetation growth, and quality of resources.
Moving onto one of the biggest impacts seen of the bee species decline is that of climate change and the way it disrupts the behavior of bees. As the temperature increase and winter become more warm and wet many species of wildlife including bees tend to land up at the wrong place at the wrong time as a result of seasons being shifting and their inability to keep up with such change. This increase in temperature affects every part of nature from the smallest to the biggest of things. The timing of flowering begins to shift and therefore the bees cannot retain their resources. While a few species of bees have managed to adapt for many others the result is not quite the same and thus they have suffered many consequences and population losses without the ability to detect timing.
PESTICIDES KILLING BEES STATISTICS
Without a doubt, the increased use of pesticides in the agriculture and farming market has had a great impact on the rapid bee decline we witness today. Pesticides are not only a non-animal friendly chemical but are extremely dangerous to the bee community and have strongly impacted their breeding ability as well as weakened their ability to fight diseases and thus we witness many more bee deaths. Besides also hinder the bees’ ability to navigate direction and is a toxic source that is harmful and in many ways not at all beneficial. When bees feed on flowers that have been sprayed with pesticides their entire nervous system may be attacked which is the most important system in a bee as it is what allows them to find food and homes as well as to forage and reproduce. These pesticides while only being sprayed in farmland areas have also been found to have travel far beyond these points which has an even large impact and can actually morphe the reproduction process.
FREQUENTLY ASKED BEE QUESTIONS
To help you gauge a better understanding of the implications these effects have had on bees, here are a few questions that are most commonly asked and tend to be unknown to most of the population. By understanding more about bees, how and why they are vanishing will also increase your ability to help save what remains.
Is the bumblebee endangered?
Bumblebees are one of the most important species of bees and pollinators in the world as they help fertilize many of the crops we use today. However, there has been a massive decrease in the number of bumblebees with a whooping fifty percent drop, leaving the Rusty Patched bumblebee an endangered species. In areas that have experienced a more drastic increase in temperature it is seen that the population has declined and in many parts of the US even vanished entirely.
How many bees are left?
As of 2020, there are around 2 billion bees left in the world, which may sound like an extremely large number but in fact, it is not enough to sustain the entire globe especially if these numbers continue to decrease.
How fast are bees dying?
A typical bee colony will tend to lose around 5-10 percent over the winter months, however in some recently reported cases a whopping 30-40 percent of bees have been lost over the winter periods and while they usually regain this mount over the summer months with the increased farming, urbanization and climate change this has become unlikely.
How many bees die a day?
In every single bee colony, a bee will most definitely die every single day and in a normal, average-sized colony you may see up to 1000 bee deaths a day.
HONEY BEE EXTINCTION
What about honey bees, the most commonly known and one of the most important? The honey bee extinction status states that they are not endangered and are currently listed as not extinct, however, they do still face many threats. The honey bee endangered is believed by many to be one of the most devastating and drastic experiences that our planet will face. Honey bees are an essential part of our everyday lives and are the only bee species that produce the food we eat today, without these bees and the resources they produce we will suffer great losses and consequences. They are also the species of bees that produce honey and beeswax which are a very important part of the global economy. They also pollinate extremely important crops including cotton, flax vegetables such as avocados, broccoli, celery, fruits such as blueberries, peaches, and cherries as well as almonds and oil in which we are very dependent on and can only achieve with the help of honeybees.
HOW TO SAVE BEES FROM EXTINCTION
So how can we stop pees from dying and protect bees today? There are many different ways one can contribute to helping to save the bees, some include ways that you can personally do even in your own home and others as part of bigger organizations and movements that aim to protect, save and conserve the remainder of the bee population we see today. Some of the ways you can do your part in helping to save the bees include
Supporting local beekeepers
Local beekeepers are hard works that ethically work with bees to natural produce goods such as honey and beeswax. By supporting these beekeepers and purchasing their products to are adding value to their market and taking value away from the mass market that are producing products from bees in an unethical and almost cruel way. Many beekeepers also use every inch of the product that bees produce, creating products such as soaps, lotions, and candles all from just one hive which means none of what has been produced goes to waste, meaning fewer bees are negatively affected.
There are many organizations that are dedicated to saving the entire bee community, by simply donating or bring awareness to others you are contributing to the cause of saving bees, whether it be big or small it doesn’t matter as every little bit counts.
Host a Fundraiser
Educating your friends and family on the cause and holding a fundraiser is a great way to not only raise money for the issue but also to bring awareness to others so that they can make a contribution.
As you can see bees are vanishing at an alarming rate and the effects of the decline are devastating for both the animal community, the environment, and man kinds quality of life, we need to act now in order to make a difference and increase our chances of a better and brighter future ahead.
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