World Bee Day

World Bee Day was celebrated yesterday (20 May) worldwide. Many bee species are facing extinction due to pesticides used in agriculture and also in gardens. Without bees, humankind’s existence is also under threat as we need pollinators to produce food.

The African Wild Bee Institute issued a statement this week (below) to sensitise communities across Africa to preserve the existence of bees:
“In Africa we live in one of the most species rich, diverse, and most beautiful continents on the planet. Our lives are still intricately connected to nature, from the food we eat, to the water we drink, to the air we breathe, to the soil in which we plant our food, and to the sheer spiritual solace we can find in nature. These natural processes are intimately linked to pollinators; those insects, birds, butterflies, beetles, rodents and even lizards which are abundant in our biologically diverse landscapes. Bees are the most important pollinators and on World Bee Day we have much to celebrate here in Africa.
Bee conservation saves more than the wild honeybees. If the wild bees go extinct in Africa, so does the fauna and flora, in fact whole ecosystems that are dependent on the role of the wild bees.
On Thursday May 20th, World Bee Day 2021, we recognised the importance of protecting all of our wild bees. They directly impact our human well-being, our nutrition, and the life support systems of our environments. Africa is rich with such diversity and such health.
Go out with wonderment on that day, and look for Africa’s wild bees, whether in your gardens or towns, villages, farms or wild spaces. Bees are beautiful and fascinating to study, each with their own character and unique behaviours. Bee-watch like others bird-watch. Look for patterns in their behaviour and maybe they will reveal something extraordinary to you; they might reveal some of their secrets. We know so little about these crucial pollinators”.

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