Bee Population on the Decline

Bees need more protection and quickly

Harper Crater, Lifestyle Editor

Showing off his hives, History teacher Jac Bennington
shares his love of beekeeping with his government

The bees are dying, there’s no denying it. Around the United States the bee population has begun a rapid spiral downward, and the population decrease has begun to worry not only beekeepers, but the public.

According to CNN, between April 2014 and April 2016 beekeepers in United States lost 44 percent of their colonies, almost 17 percent in the United Kingdom, proving this is a worldwide concern. Honeybees are not the species in the most danger, there are many more species of bees in greater danger than honeybees, or that are possibly extinct at this point.

Sophomore Ethan Jakum is affected more than most by this issue. “I keep an apiary and use the honey produced, for everything,” Jakum said. “I guarantee everything on my table by the end of the summer is provided by the bees.”

Contrary to popular belief, a world without bees would be a world without almonds, grapes, pears, avocados, as well as other fruits and flowers. “Bees don’t just help flowers and fruits,” stated senior Lily Kase. “Bees pollinate over 100 crops of which are used for further production of foods like beef, milk and cheese.”

Honey Nut Cheerios, which mainly uses bee products, took steps toward positively impacting the bee population. Honey Nut Cheerios pulled its mascot, Buzz, from its products to raise awareness for the bees. The company also included a packet of seeds with every purchase, but later discovered the seeds were actually harming the bees more than they were helping. The seeds are not inherently bad per se, but if some flowers are planted in a climate where they do not belong it can cause an increase in bees’ deaths instead of increasing the bees’ reproduction.

Kase is passionate about the problems the bee population is facing. “I think a lot of people are unaware of the impact bees have on our environment and food production, and that’s the biggest problem. I read that as the spring season is upon us, people can abstain from mowing a small patch of their grass so that bees can have more places to pollinate and live!” “[There are] small things that people can do, are buying local honey and shopping at farmers markets,” said Kase.