Honey, I’m sorry but we need to talk.
Earlier this week bees were added to the endangered species list and people FREAKED OUT.
Why is it such a buzzkill?
Well, firstly honeybees give us honey and honey is delicious. While it would be sad for all of us to never have honey to drizzle on porridge or to never again be able channel our inner Winnie the Pooh and eat honey by the handful straight from the jar, that’s not the main reason people worrying about the declining numbers of bees.
Honeybees also pollinate our crops. In fact, some 84% of the crops grown for us to eat need bees and other insects to pollinate them. Without the fruit, vegetables and grains that bees pollinate, human beings would suffer massively.
But it’s not just humans that would suffer – our furry friends in the animal world would have a hard time too. Birds and and small mammals eat the berries and seeds that bees pollinate. Bigger mammals eat the smaller mammals. The entire ecosystem relies on the availability of the crops that bees help pollinate. Basically, crops are the ecosystem’s Harry Potter and bees are the Order of Phoenix. We might be able to survive without them, but our chances are far better if the whole gang shows up.
Why are we bumbling this?
Okay, now for the good news. The bees that have been put on the endangered species list are called yellow-faced bees and they’re native to Hawaii. Which is actually pretty good news for everyone because it means that honeybees are still doing ok and that yellow-faced bees are about to get a lot of help. The main reason that yellow-faced bees are struggling is because their environment is being destroyed. By listing the bees as endangered, the forests will be granted extra protections which is excellent news not just for the bees, but for the entire Hawaiian ecosystem.
Although a species being endangered is never a good thing, at least there is some honey-colour lining.
So, er, yay?