This blog has been created to help one of the most important elements of nature - Bees. These little troopers are really struggling at the moment. We need bees not just for pollination, but to maintain the biodiversity of our precious planet. Why is this happening? Answers are beginning to emerge, but we need to work together. In this blog, you will find out where to get information, how you can help, and links to organisations that are working hard to save bees from extinction. Please help this cause - we need bees for much more than you think.

This blog will be updated regularly with new information about the bees. This will include links to press releases, articles and other web/blog pages.

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Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Saving Welsh Bees - "We'll Keep a Welcome in the Hillside"

Welsh Environment Minister -  John Griffiths, has a plan of action to save his country's bees
"Proposals include planting more bee-friendly plants in areas such as railway embankments and road verges."

 Read the full report in this BBC News Wales news report:

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Are Our Bees Being Heard

Last night BBC Four highlighted the plight of our honey bees, adding to the recent flux of programmes about  our dying bees.  Given that there appears to be some publicity about this hot subject now, and the general public more aware of the problem (hopefully), what more do you think should be done?  Are Schools doing enough to encourage children to look after their environment?  Should the Government be doing more? Let us know your views

Missed it?  Catch up with the programme on BBC iplayer (until 30th July 2012).  Just follow this link:

BBC Four - Who Killed The Honey Bee

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Bad News For Bees - and other wildlife

Yesterday theguardian reported that, due to the exceptionally bad weather in the UK, many wildlife (including bees) are going to suffer the consequences next year.

At least the frogs are well fed this year - with slug populations at an all-time high

Read the full article here:

'Apocalyptic' summer for wildlife – except slugs, says National Trust

What is the wildlife doing in your garden/allotment?

Thursday, 12 July 2012

50,000 Bees Move House

Imagine going away for a month, then coming back to 50,000 bees in the cavity of your home.  That's what happened to Larry Chen.  See how the local 'bee man' dealt with it in this video:

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Bee Debatable

Bee Sculpture at Eden Project, Cornwall, UK

Eden Project

(A great place to learn about the biodiversity of our amazing planet)

Please note, this article is relevant mostly to Europe (including the UK). Posts about bees in other countries will follow.

On the 8th June 2012, Farmers Weekly published an article by Philip Case - France to ban Syngenta  pesticide linked to bee decline.  In this, Case informs us that France is about to ban a pesticide that is used to treat oilseed rape.  The effects of this pesticide appear to be pretty devastating to the bee.  Case reports

The plan to ban Cruiser follows two studies earlier this year, in the UK and France, which found evidence that neonicotinoids contain chemicals that disorientate bees and prevent them from finding their way back to hives, causing colony collapse disorder”

Previously on the 3rd June 2012, another article in the Farmers Weekly -  Banning Pesticides Will Not Reverse Bee Decline  again by Case, reveals that Dominic Dyer, Chief Executive of Crop Protection Association appears to have evidence to the contrary.  Dyer suggests that:

"Most experts agree that the decline in bee populations is down to the Varroa mite and other parasitic diseases, combined with the problems associated with habitat loss, colony stress and climate change,”

It is clear then, that the argument within the scientific world, soldiers on, as do our bees.  The views all appear to be valid, yet there is still not a definitive answer as to what needs to be done.

The scientist will undoubtedly carry on debating over the reasons surrounding the demise of these wonderful little creatures.  In the meantime, here are some things you can be doing that they do all agree on:

·      Stop using pesticides.  You will be surprised how quickly the hoverflies, ladybirds and other predatory creatures take over, once the chemicals are gone.  If you need help to stop using pesticides, please go to Garden Organic, the UK’s leading organic growing charity (formerly the Henry Doubleday Society).

·      Grow a wide variety of plants that will attract the bees.  Please see the beekind tool at the Bumblebee Conservation Trust and just follow the simple instructions

·      Help a bee in distress.  If you find a bee lethargic, still, or in an unusual place, then offer it a small amount of sugar and water mix.  This will give it a boost and help it to go on its way.

·      Provide a good habitat for bees.  Leave some areas of your garden/land messy.  Let grass grow tall and see just how many wildflowers appear in it.  Just a small strip of grass can accommodate a wide variety of wild flowers over time.  Better still - create a wild meadow area.  You could also make a bee house or cafe, to give them security in your garden.

·      Let some of your herbs and vegetables flower. Rosemary, chives and thyme, marjoram/oregano, are just a few that bees love.

·      Lobby your local MP to pull out all the stops, and make sure you sign every petition you can.

·      Consider being a beekeeper, or if not, support your local beekeepers by asking them what you can do to help.  This could be buying their honey or making donations to help fund the hives.  For more information on keeping bees go to The British Beekeepers Association

·      Keep a diary of the bees you see and if you see any nests.  Let any of these organisation know if you see anything unusual.

What are your views on this subject?  Are you a beekeeper?  Do you try to grow plants that attract bees?  Please comment.