Why Should We Save the Bees?

Why Should We Save the Bees?

Michelle Estevez, Staff Writer

Bees. When people think of bees, some adjectives that may come to mind are dangerous, cute, harmful, friendly, and many more mixed opinions. As much as bees are disliked, they are interesting insects. They have so much more to them than just a yellow body with a stinger. The most common type of bees are honey bees, bumble bees, wasps, and even killer bees. They all have a different but similar way of living. 


In the hive where the bees live, there are different jobs for each of them. The queen bee is the “leader” of the hive. She plays a massive role in the survival of the hive. She lays all of the eggs in the hive, and is taken care of by her “court” of worker bees which digest her food for her, feed her, and groom her. The female worker bees store the pollen and make honey, take care of the eggs/larvae, and take care of the “housekeeping” of the hive. Similar to the female worker bees, the male bees (called drones) don’t really have a job except for mating with the queen. 


Bees are very important to the ecosystem and human lives. Bees pollinate 75% of the foods we eat, including apples, broccoli, almonds, squash, melons, and even trees. Bees pollinate by using the hairs all over their body. Their hairs attract the pollen through electrostatic forces which they then transfer into specialized pockets and carry back to their hive. In this process, bees will cross pollinate which is when the excess pollen they have on their body drops on the ground and results in new plants being born. 


Over the years, bees have been declining in numbers, due to pesticides, toxic chemicals, and habitat loss. Without the pollination of bees, agriculture would decline, jobs would be lost, and the availability of fresh produce would decline as well. Bees are also known for their stinging which makes them less appealing to some people, but bees will only sting if they feel threatened or confused. 


Even though bees are declining, there are a lot of opportunities to try and help these insects. By supporting local beekeepers, keeping away from using toxic chemicals or fertilizers, or making a bee garden, we can help. We can also keep educating others about bees and their impact can make a difference in our lives, our planet, and our ecosystem.