What is pollination? Simply as bees visit plants seeking food, pollen catches on their bodies and passes between plants, fertilising them – In simple terms that’s pollination. Because Bees gather pollen and nectar to stock their colony (Hive when domesticated), bees are generally the most effective pollinators since they visit many more flowers and carry more pollen between them.
As a result, Bees are vital to a healthy environment and healthy economy. They’re also simply beautiful and fascinating little insects. But what makes them so special?
The need for bees
The simple fact is that we need bees. Mankind takes them and other pollinators like butterflies and hoverflies for granted, but Bees are vital to stable, healthy food supplies and key to the varied, colourful and nutritious diets we need (and have come to expect).
Bees (and many lesser known pollinators) are perfectly adapted to pollinate, helping plants grow, breed and produce food. They do so by transferring pollen between flowering plants and therefore keeping the cycle of life turning.
The vast majority of plants we need for food rely on pollination, especially by bees: from almonds and vegetables, to citrus fruits such as apples. Bees also pollinate around 80% of wildflowers in Europe, so our countryside would be far less interesting and beautiful without them.
The above is very simplistic, but in a nutshell it sums up why Bees are important. Not all of us are in it for the Honey in fact, sitting next to a hive entrance and simply watching and listening to them whilst smelling the pollen and nectar can be one of the most rewarding experiences you can imagine.