We Are Change
Bees are extremely essential to a healthy ecosystem that favors an abundance of plant life. Every third bite of food you take, existed with the help of a pollinator – bees being one of the largest contributors. Basically, without bees our environment would change radically, and not for the better. You can look at them as one of the largest “arteries” for the transfer of pollen between plants on this planet, which is obviously important.
Tens of millions of honeybees have been dying off en mass over the recent years, a result of “colony collapse” disorder as it has been called. Some are warning that our loss of bees is a “threat” to our food supply already. Colony collapse disorder has been labeled with an “unknown cause” but this is far from the truth – the cause (or rather, causes) is obvious. But, many have reacted to this uneasy news, by building robot “bees” to pollinate, instead of removing the issue that is causing the die off in the first place. The same can be said about China, which in some areas, has been hit so hard by the loss of bee populations that humans are being forced to pollinate in substitute of the bees!
Neonicotinoids which are hyper active insecticides basically, are the main factor. Not only have these chemicals been proven to decimate local insect populations, but also it has been killing birds in large numbers. Here is a quote from co-author of this research paper published in the journal Nature,
“Neonicotinoids were always regarded as selective toxins. But our results suggest that they may affect the entire ecosystem.’
Hans de Kroon, Radboud University
Pesticides themselves have been linked to ailments in humans, so it is no surprise that insects would be affected so much more blatantly. Also, veterans of raising bees have said the very act of “factory breeding” queens for hives sets them up to fail. They explain that naturally, the queen leaves the hive to mate with nearby drones (male bees that mate with the queen), and this gives a fresh influx of new genetics that the bees depend on. These new genetics give the bees knowledge of the local region which is essential to survival. Factory breeding instead, is all an artificial process which robs the bees of new input and new genetic information.
So, what do we do about it? Well, this is what we can do:
Breeding Healthy Bees
Well, as stated above, the act of artificially inseminating queens, disrupts the natural act of strengthening the genetics of the bees. So, letting the queen mate naturally is an obvious solution to this issue.
Back Yard Hives
Basically, back yard hives are as “organic” as you can get with these creatures. There are no chemicals used when dealing with the bees, and they are basically free to roam. With the design of this particular hive, it allows the keeper to interact with the bees without the need to smoke them out into deliriousness which can disrupt their communications patterns for long periods of time. This method of beekeeping allows the bee keeper, to collect honey without disturbing the bees as well. I also found it very interesting that if the keeper so desired, this is the perfect home to catch feral bees which helps the local native bees.
Permaculture is a form of agriculture, that uses unorthodox methods of architecture and ecosystem placement that enables the grower to integrate their grow area with the natural surroundings. Absolutely no chemicals are used, and the grow maintains itself for the most part. It creates ridiculous abundance of all products grown, it has demonstrated itself to be far more effective in terms of yield per acre than chemical farming. One amazing by-product of this revolutionary method of growing food, is that it revives bee populations very rapidly; giving them an abundance of plants to feed off of and pollinate.
These are just a few methods and I am sure that there are many more. I personally believe that the use of chemical farming has met its end, and will be discontinued as humanity evolves into new forms of operation and being. Whether it be the adoption of new beekeeping techniques, or the utilization of permaculture, the situation for reviving bees is anything but hopeless. Here are some tips you can use to help your local bee populations, without being a beekeeper. Thank you so much for reading, I hope this article gave you new insight.