There have been reports of the extinction of bees for many years. Many people think directly of the honey bee, but it is not the honey bees that should worry us. Because these will probably never become extinct by the care of their caring beekeepers. The bee extinction actually refers to the many different kinds of wild bees such as mason bees, trouser bees, sand bees, furrow bees or mask bees. An overview of all wild bee species and their occurrences can be found here. In contrast to honey bees, wild bees usually live alone and are therefore also called solitary or hermit bees.
In Germany, 60% of the more than 560 wild bee species are currently threatened.¹ Across Europe, the decline in the bee population has been about 10% in recent years. In the USA the decline is 30% and in the Middle East the population has even been decimated by 85%.² In some regions of China the bee mortality has progressed so far that fruit trees are manually pollinated by migrant workers.³
Reasons for the death of bees
The one reason for bee mortality does not exist, it is a multitude of factors that work together and favour the death of bees. The reasons are among others:
- The use of insecticides in agriculture and other poisons that absorb insects in the air.
- The development of areas (settlements, industry or roads) displaces habitats for insects and plants.
- As a result of climate change, many plants are now flowering much earlier than in the past. As a result, the natural rhythm of the insects is upset.⁴
But why do we actually need bees?
Without bees, our daily food supply would look very meagre, because many plants depend on pollination by bees. Especially the fruit that we eat every day.
- 80% of domestic wild and agricultural plants depend on bee pollination.⁵
- 30% of all human food comes from bee-pollinated plants.
- The economic benefit of pollination by bees in Germany is about 2 billion euros.
- Europe-wide the economic benefit is 14.2 billion Euro⁶ and worldwide even 135-180 billion.⁷
- Bees are the third most important farm animal in Germany due to the value they generate through their pollination performance.
- No bees, no cocoa: crops such as cocoa, vanilla and passion fruit depend 100 percent on pollination by bees.
- Plants pollinated by bees (e.g. strawberries) have a significantly higher yield and the fruit is of higher quality (e.g. longer shelf life) than fruit from unpollinated plants.
Certainly there are many solutions to the problem. However, we would like to focus here on simple, pragmatic and cost-effective solutions that everyone can implement at home and in their daily lives with little effort.
Bee hotels are the ideal nesting place for wild bees in the city. A bee hotel does not take up much space and can be easily placed or hung on the balcony. Nice side effect: You can watch the daily hustle and bustle in your bee hotel live. 🙂
You can buy bee hotels from numerous suppliers or you can build your own hotel at home with our instruction “Building a bee hotel yourself”.
Bienenhotels you can buy e.g. at the following shops
Plant flowering and bee-friendly plants (sunflowers, beeswax, wild flowers, bellflowers, wild vines, lavender, silk plant, garlic or catnip) or kitchen herbs (thyme, rosemary, basil) in your garden or on your balcony. In this way you give the bees the opportunity to take in sufficient food (especially in the city) from different cultures and thus strengthen their offspring and themselves. Furthermore, you will always have fresh herbs for cooking at home. 🙂
You can buy seeds for bee friendly plants at the following shops:
When shopping, make sure that you buy food that has been produced without the use of pesticides. Because the supply in the supermarket is controlled by customer demand. The more organic food is bought, the more organic food is produced.
If you grow your own fruit and vegetables in your garden, you should also avoid using insecticides and pesticides.
Act & Share!
- Hang up bee hotels on your balcony or in the garden. (Don’t forget to share it with us under the hashtag #projectbeesupporter!)
- Plant bee-friendly plants in your garden or on your balcony.
- Bee hotels instead of vouchers: Bee hotels are a great birthday or Christmas present
- Follow us on Instagram and Facebook and become #projectbeesupporter.
Support us by sharing Project Bee with your friends!
Become a #projectbeesupporter
Join our worldwide #projectbeesupporter community and share your bee hotel or your flowers, herbs or other plants planted for bees.
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