Researchers at the University of Reading conducted the study. They estimated the overall value of bees by examining the extent food crops rely on their pollination to grow. Then they worked out the proceeds of these crops contribute to the UK economy.
Researchers found that bees contribute £651 million to the UK economy a year, £150 million more than the Royal Family brings in through tourism.
Did you know 85% of the UK’s apple crop and 45% of the strawberry crop relies on bees?
The government is currently reviewing whether to lift a ban on neonicotinoid pesticides. At the moment, farmers are prohibited from using the pesticide for fear of causing bee colony decline.
Indeed, honeybee colonies have slumped in the UK from 250,000 in the 1950s to fewer than 100,000 today. Many British apple crops, for example, which previously relied on honeybees, are now almost exclusively pollinated by a handful of wild bee species. Source: The Telegraph.
The report, led by the universities of Stanford, Princeton and Berkeley, said vertebrates were disappearing at a rate 114 times faster than normal. Humans could be next on the list.
Given the knock-on effect of the huge loss of vertibrates over the last 100 years and ecosystems being destroyed as a result, the report says benefits such as pollination by bees could be lost within three human generations.
We can't do much about what is happening word wide, but each one of us can make a difference to our immediate environment.
Make a bee happy.
#Whether we use our green space for pleasure or as a vegetable plot we can all enjoy the rewards of planting for bees. Whether your garden be a balcony, allotment, window box, hanging basket, pots and tubs or a swathe of green open space we can all provide honey bees and other insect pollinators with a banquet of pollen and nectar throughout the year. Not only will they benefit from the sensual feast plants provide so will we. We will also enjoy the variety of honey and foods from those plants. By planting the right type of plants and trees we provide a larder for honey bees and other pollinators, habitats for wildlife and the pollination provides food for us and other wildlife from birds to insects. So, by planting for bees everyone is a winner.#
Source: Gardening for bees.
Tubular-shaped flowers such as foxgloves, honeysuckle, penstemons and snapdragons are also favorite feeding places of long-tongued bees such as the garden bumblebee.
Be(e) you young or old, everyone can make their own outdoor area bee-worthy. I can't attend to my garden any more and it's gone a bit wild in places where plants can find a tiny spot to germinate at the edges of the fiber ground cover. At the moment, about twenty wonderful purple and pale pink foxgloves have produced tall flower spikes. I let one seed last year and it's multiplied beyond all expectations—a delight to the eye and attractive to insects of all sorts.
What do you grow to nurture bees?