We can all do our bit to help the bees (and here, I’m talking about all types of bees, including those unsung heroes of the pollinating world: solitary and bumble bees, as well as honey bees).
Helping bees starts with awareness followed by practical action within our own means. Of course, we instinctively know what’s good for bees and what is not.
We know bees need habitat, including nest sites and nectar and pollen rich plants for food. They need to forage without being exposed to insecticides.
A large part of this website highlights how the two issues above are
causing problems for bees (and indeed, other pollinators and invertebrates generally).
Habitat decline is worrying, and is being lost to development, farming and land management practice, and even gardening trends - although increasingly, I am pleased to see that work is being done to reverse these trends - gardeners are including plants for bees and some government bodies and councils are creating more pollinator verges.
The use of pesticides is of real concern. They are not only used on farmland to grow crops, they are also used (sometimes preventatively – how crazy is that?) on lawns, golf courses, and may even be present within commercially grown pot plants you buy from the garden centre. Then of course, there are the garden pesticides, and those spread by local councils.
However, if we really want change, then it starts with you and me.
I like to think of it in terms of bee-ing the change.......
Although I started out as a committed campaigner back in 2008, these days with a huge amount of work and creating pressure to create regulatory change, I started focusing a lot more on the positive, practical steps the general public can take to help the bees.
I have come across campaigners who spend a lot of time telling other people and government what actions they must take, whilst not following their own advice themselves. If I did not try my best to help the bees in my own garden, I'd be a hypocrite as far as I'm concerned.
The fact is that if we want to help the bees, it really is WE PEOPLE who have the power to create the change that will help them - and it starts by doing what we can in our own gardens and in our own communities.