All About Pollinators

Many plants require insect pollinators to reproduce and grow more plants.  There are ways around this of course, such as hand pollinating with paintbrushes.  Since this is not the most efficient way to grow crops, I want to go over the major types of insect pollinators.  Bees are vital…VITAL…to food production and worldwide plant growth and they are dying off.  So, without further ado, information on the major hazards to bees as well as the major types of bees that help pollinate the planet.

Insecticides

Human use of insecticides is a major concern for the bee population.  A particular concern was a type of insecticide called “neonicitinoids” which caused colony collapse in honeybee colonies.  However, all insecticides can kill off bees since there is no way to make an insecticide work against some insects but not others.

Lack of Knowledge

Bees also struggle from general lack of knowledge on the part of humans.  Unfortunately, the beneficial insects, such as honeybees, are black and yellow, just like the yellow jackets that we all hate.  People have serious difficulty telling the difference between the good guys and the bad guys.

Honey Bees

Highly social and one of the most beneficial of all pollinators, the honey bee can be various shades of yellow or even occasionally orange.  When they sting, the stinger is pulled off the bee and the bee dies.  Because of this, stinging is a last resort and they avoid doing so.

Bumble Bees

A favorite of every preschool child, bumble bees a large, fuzzy bees that are darker in color.  They are known for their very loud buzz.  While they are social and curious, they don’t tend to sting though they can sting multiple times and will sting to protect their nests.

Eastern Carpenter Bees

These bees are even larger than bumble bees.  Only females have stingers and they do sting when they are provoked but people do that too so I really can’t blame them.

Conclusion

It is vital for us to help these pollinators to maintain and increase their existing populations.  Unless we are going to have farmers out in fields using paintbrushes, we HAVE to help the insect pollinators to succeed.

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