The honey bee is an innocent, hard-working creature that is not there to hurt you. Many people confuse honey bees with wasps. Unless you really get a honey bee mad, they will not hurt you. In fact, they are actually a vital insect in the environment. With the honey bee population on the decline, our future is at risk.
Honey bees are pollinators, just like butterflies and moths. These animals carry pollen from one plant to another. They are critically important everywhere in the world that has climates capable enough for agriculture. Without them, fresh produce wouldn’t nearly exist. In recent years, bee numbers have been on the decline.
Bees can die out in many different ways, the most common being colony collapse disorder (CCD). This has been huge within the past few years and no one knew what exactly went on. CCD is when the worker bees left their hive with the queen and many young bees remaining. Eventually, the rest of the hive died as well. These dramatic losses due to CCD are not the only ways bees are dying (epa.gov).
The Zika virus, a disease transmitted through mosquitoes, is a horrifying new illness emerging from the south. It can cause birth defects and many health complications. Health experts are scrambling to find a solution to prevent the disease from spreading north. One of these solutions is spraying. It may be a good solution to prevent Zika, however, it is killing millions of bees that are relied on for food and agriculture. This very thing happened a few weeks ago in South Carolina. They are busy preparing for the long winter and all of a sudden the spray killed millions of bees one beekeeper had (cnn.com)
There are so many issues regarding why bees keep dying, but how can we save them? Many people do not know that populations are declining or that they even had an impact on the environment. Outreach and education is key to awareness of the honey bee. Beekeeping is also a great way to create a new hobby while trying to save the environment. Only you can help save the honey bee, so it is our duty to do whatever we can to keep them alive.