20th May is observed across the world as World Bee Day. This is in honour of Slovenian Anton Jansa, who was born on this day in 1773 and is widely known as the pioneer of beekeeping.
The purpose of this day is to raise awareness about the importance of bees for the ecosystem and the planet, to highlight the role they play as pollinators, and to bring to light the threats they face today due to human activity, loss of habitat, and pesticides.
In 2016 at the FAO Regional Conference for Europe, the Republic of Slovenia, with the support of Apimondia, the International Federation of Beekeepers’ Association, proposed World Bee Day to be observed on 20th May. As a result, the first World Bee Day was observed on 20th May 2018.
Why are Bees Important to the Ecosystem?
The Earth without bees would be very difficult to imagine. They have a huge part to play in the food that we eat every day and thus, they contribute millions of dollars to the economy.
- Bees are one of the major pollinators of food crops in the world. According to data, around 80 per cent of the crops in the United States are dependent on bees for pollination.
- Fruits and vegetables such as apples, pears, broad beans, tomatoes, strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries rely on bees for their pollination.
- Bees pollinate about one-sixth of the flowering plant species across the world.
- Bees provide us with honey and wax.
On this day, let us ensure that we will value and recognize the work done by these beautiful but underappreciated species.