World Bee Day comes around on 20 May each year, celebrating our hard-working little pollinators and raising awareness of the significance of bees and other pollinators for our survival.
Insects are the world’s top pollinators: 75% of 115 top global food crops depend on animal pollination, including cocoa, coffee, almonds and cherries, according to the UN.
In a landmark 2019 report, scientists concluded that nearly half of all insect species worldwide are in decline and a third could disappear altogether by century’s end. One in six species of bees have gone regionally extinct somewhere in the world. The main drivers of extinction are thought to be habitat loss and pesticide use. The climate crisis could lead to more small-bodied bees but fewer bumblebees, according to research warning of potential “cascading” effects on plant pollination and across whole ecosystems.
How you can help pollinators
Plant a pollinator-friendly garden
- Choose plants native to your region.
- Choose nectar- and pollen-rich flowers with a range of shapes, sizes, and colors.
- Avoid modern hybrids
- Have several different plants in bloom from early spring through late Autumn
- Plant in drifts
- Avoid landscape fabric and mulch
- Avoid pesticides
- Provide clean water for pollinators with a shallow dish, bowl, or birdbath with half-submerged stones for perches.
- Leave dead tree trunks, also called “snags,” in your landscape for wood-nesting bees and beetles
- Join Landcare or another land conservation group in your community by helping to create and maintain community gardens and green spaces to ensure that pollinators have appropriate habitat.
Prepare a bee-inspired menu
Arrange a screening of the award-winning film ‘The Pollinators’
Watch The Pollinators trailer here.