|And it’s not just these ladies who have picked up on the Bee Trend –
- Victoria Beckham has tweeted about her bee pollen obsession
- Kate Middleton swears by Bee Venom Face Cream, fashion designers
- Vivienne Westwood & Katharine Hamnett attended a protest in aid of Bees in London
- Comedians Patrick Kielty, Josh Widdecombe, Paul Chowdhry and Adam Buxton, and singer Eliza Dolittle were onboard for a charity Friends of the Earth event, that was raising money to save endangered British bees
- Joanna Lumley, Jodie Kidd, Celia Birtwell and Alex Monroe joined forces with Burt’s Bees to design limited edition beehives to be auctioned during National Honey Week, and with all proceeds going to The British Beekeepers Association Adopt a Beehive Campaign
- Actress Ellen Page, famous for playing pregnant teen Juno, is narrating documentary Vanishing of the Bees
About the Decline of the Bees
The decline of the bees is a serious worldwide problem. As goodness from the hive is the heart of our brand, we are trying to raise awareness about bees and the issues they are facing. In the UK alone, honeybee colonies have fallen by 50% in the last 20 years. Bees work incredibly hard for us and experts have warned that by 2018 it’s possible that bees could disappear almost entirely from Britain. The decline of the bees may well be the next ‘global warming’.
Aside from plants and trees bees pollinate: one third of our food; much of what cows and other animals eat.
Bees are responsible for coffee, chocolate, cotton and many other things we all depend on for our daily existence
Bees and wild pollinators are responsible for pollinating a whopping 84% of EU crops
The decline of the bees is a serious matter that could have dramatic long-term effects on our worldwide food supply, the Earth’s ecosystem, the world’s landscape and the global economy. Honeybees have been inexplicably abandoning their hives en masse:
2011/12 – 25% of beehives lost in the USA
2011/12 – 16% loss of honeybees in the UK
(some bee species are now extinct and others are at just 4% of their previous numbers.)
The decline of the bees has numerous suggested causes including varroa mites, malnutrition and even the theory that radiation waves from mobile phones may be interfering with the bees sense of direction making them unable to find their hives. However, most research has shown the main culprits behind the decline of the bees are pesticide use and lack of flowers, wildflowers and hedgerows which bees depend upon to survive.
These factors, combined with an increase in mono-crops and modern beekeeping practices (for example, moving bees en masse to pollinate farms far away from their habitat), ends up compromising their immune systems and makes bees vulnerable to disease.
Many of you have probably heard the quote (often attributed to Einstein) “If bees disappeared off the surface of the globe, man would have only four years to live”. Not sure if this is true but we would sure be in trouble. The decline of the bees is a major issue we should all be worried about. Help save the bees!
What Can I Do To Help?
* Write About and Buy Bee Products!
There’s a lot you can do to help with the decline of the bees, starting with the most delicious option: eat more honey! Creating a demand for honey and other bee products such as propolis, royal jelly, bee pollen etc will keep the demand for bee-related products strong. More people will then be likely to take up beekeeping, which will help sustain bee colonies.
* Sign the Friends of the Earth UK Petition to David Cameron: Save bees!
* Make Your Garden Bee-Friendly- plant more flowers
UC Berkeley has published Urban Bee Gardens, a fantastic guide to turning your garden into a bee paradise. It includes a comprehensive list of the best plants and flowers to attract bees, as well as information about the different species of bees, garden behaviour, stinging: facts v. fears and more.
* Spread The Word
A lot of people don’t know about the decline of the bees, and the more people who do know, the better. Tell your friends and family about the decline of the bees, post info on your blog or your Facebook or twitter page. Write your MP to let him or her know that the decline of the bees is an important issue for you. All hope is not lost for the bees. There’s really a lot we can do to help.
* Help the Decline of the Bees- Adopt a Beehive
We’re very happy to report that we recently adopted a beehive, and you can read about it here: The Unbeelievable Hive. If you’d like to join the growing number of adoptive bee parents, check out the British Beekeepers Association’s Adopt A Beehive page. The money raised by this programme will fund research into honeybee health and education programmes for beekeepers.
* Support BEES for Development
* Start Your Own Colony
The British Beekeepers Association estimates that over 90% of the UK’s honeybee population is cared for by 17,000 amateur beekeepers. There’s a load of information out there on how to go about it, but we recommend getting started by searching for a seminar in your area or picking up one of the many how-to guides like A Practical Manual of Beekeeping.
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