The bees have been declared the most important living beings on our planet — the Earthwatch Institute concluded in 2019 during the Royal Geographical Society of London meeting.
The most important creatures on Earth, though, are also extremely endangered. Some scientists claim that if bees truly go extinct, humans would be next.
Needless to say, with pollination being the bees’ job, the majority of the plants would not be able to reproduce, so — the fauna would have been gone after the bees, too.
Why are bees so important for humanity?
Even though their job might seem simple, bees’ fertilizing relationship with flowers and plants is directly responsible for the production of 75% of fruits, vegetables, seeds, and nuts that we consume on a daily basis. This whopping 75% translates to more than 200 billion dollars in global agriculture revenue.
But since 2006, these hardworking, busy bees have been mysteriously disappearing.
The recent studies show a dramatic decline in the bees’ number as almost 90% of the bee population has gone missing in the last decade. In some colonies, mites, viruses, and parasites have been to blame, but uncontrolled use of pesticides, insecticides, deforestation, long and cold winters are among the culprits, too.
If the trend continues, entire food chains may be at risk.
Without bees, the world would be one hella dystopic place — our food would not be as tasty or nutritious. Not to mention that some of our favorite foods would disappear completely while others would be scarce and expensive. If the bees go extinct, we would be dieting on mainly corn, wheat, and rice, as they are wind-pollinated plants.
Bees are very intelligent, and we have been applying knowledge of bees’ mannerisms and social interactions when creating human initiatives.
For example, researchers have suggested that studying the actions of bees could help experts develop emergency plans to evacuate people from an overcrowded environment.
Observing honeybee dances can also help scientists understand where changes are taking place in the environment.
Also, bees can help us heal: in a 2020 study, scientists found evidence that melittin, a component in honeybee venom, could kill cancer cells.
To conclude, bees’ disappearance would be a huge toll on humanity, and while we may not die, life quality would be very low.
There are numerous ways we can help bees live, but the struggle is real for everyone in the chain.