Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Two Bees Or Not Two Bees

Apologies for the awful pun, but tomorrow marks the start of the 2018 British Bee Count. Sunday will be World Bee Day. I have already discovered that you have to be careful how you tell people about this. This is not promotion of global sanitaryware [World Bidet] It is about our little buzzing friends. I am mentioning it in advance for two reasons- so that you know, and can promote it too, and also because Sunday is also Pentecost, and that's a very significant day in the Christian Calendar. 
But back to the bees...
The country of Slovenia regards itself as the 'Cradle of World Beekeeping' This land of lush mixed forests, colourful meadows of flowers, a clean environment, hard-working people has many, many, bees. Not only that but 1 in 200 people have their own hives! They make diverse products from the honey - special honey chocolate, honey pastry and honey beers and brandies. 
The old records testify that beekeeping was already known by the immigrant Slavs in the 6th century. At the time of Maria Theresa, Slovenian beekeepers were highly renowned, and as the first teacher of beekeeping, the Slovenian Anton Janša, [1734-1773]who is considered the founder of modern apiculture, established himself in Vienna. He studied bees, and visited all the crowned heads of Europe, to encourage them and to teach different nations the skills in maintaining happy, healthy, productive bee colonies. The people of Slovenia regard May 20th, Anton's birthday, as a national holiday. But why should we make this a world event? This is their argument...
In addition to being one of the major pollinators, thus ensuring food and food security, sustainable agriculture and biodiversity, bees significantly contribute to the mitigation of climate change and environmental conservation. In the long-term, the protection of bees and the beekeeping sector can help reduce poverty and hunger, as well as preserve a healthy environment and biodiversity. Scientific studies have proven that bees have become increasingly endangered.  It is only through joint efforts that we can ensure the protection of bees and their habitats.
The Slovenians petitioned the UN and now May 20th has been recognised - humans cannot survive without bees! Here in Britain we too understand the value of bees.  Since 1900, Britain has lost 13 species of bee, and a further 35 species are under threat of extinction. Tomorrow is the start of the Great British Bee Count organised by Friends of the Earth. Details here. Will you join me and bee buzzy busy in this cause?


  1. I've taken special care to choose bee friendly plans this year. They need all the help they can get.

  2. I haven't seen any bees as yet this Spring - we've only really started to warm up this past week or two. However, I am going on a walk tomorrow morning down by the lake and there are special gardens set up to attract bees and butterflies etc. so I will keep my eyes peeled to see if we spot any as yet!


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