What are bees really doing and how important are they for us humans?

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From a young age, we’ve always been told to ‘Save The Bees.’ For a while, we always thought these adults were talking about Beyonce (because let’s be honest, we need to keep that international treasure safe). It turned out they’re not talking about Queen Bey; they’re talking about the buzzing bee. But why do we need to save them? What do they do and why is important to us?

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Bees are major pollinators

Bees are some of the world’s most vital pollinators – their feet get covered in pollen from plants and crops, meaning that they fertilize the next plant they go to. In fact, bees actually pollinate over a third of the crops and food produce that we eat every day across the globe. They contribute to the farming of fruits and vegetables, rapeseed and sunflowers, nuts, cocoa beans and more! In monetary terms, they contribute around $170 billion to the economy each year – and they don’t get paid a penny.

Our landscapes would be incredibly different without them

As well as pollinating our crops and food produce, bees also pollinate our flowers and plant life. Without them in our lives, the development of our world would have been completely different – and many of the landscapes we have would not be there. We may not have heather fields or meadows, or even space for animals to roam. Without sustenance, these animals would die, therefore cutting off another of humans’ food sources.

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They can tell us about the health of the world

When it comes to bees, they are so much more than simply pollinating machines. The biodiversity, community and productivity within beehives can tell us a lot about the world around us. By studying factors such as their produce and their lifespan (bees survive longer than many other colony animals) we can gauge the state of their surrounding habitat, and research any environmental factors that are affecting them – and therefore affecting us.

Bees can be trained

One of the main benefits of worker bees is that they can be trained for strategic farming and agricultural growth. Many scientists have found that training a worker bee to focus on a particular scent (for a dwindling crop) will drastically improve its growth. This is a huge benefit to farming and for societal needs.

Their products are used within everyday life

Although you may not realize it, many of the products you use every day are made from bee produce. For example, your candles, lip balms and moisturizers could be made of beeswax, honey is used broadly as a natural sweetener in many foods (as well as being delicious on its own), Royal Jelly is full of vitamins and minerals and is often used as a health food, and bees venom has even been used within medicine. Without many of these products, the shelves in our supermarket would be sparse.

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