While the global bee crisis it something incredibly important that we all need to work on, please don't forget where you may live. I find it incredibly sad that I meet people every single week who don't even know we have native bees. The thing is, we are all so busy I think that we just don't see them. We don't notice what is already here.
Thyreus nitidulus ~ Neon Cuckoo Bee
We have over 1,500 Native Bees and we in Australia have a bit of an issue with European Honey bees taking over Native Bee areas and as they are far faster and heavier feeders, they leave not much for our Native Bee friends. Balance, its all about balance.
My Australian friends, if you are unfamiliar with your local native bees, I suggest you start researching and if you are in New South Wales, you can now purchase this stunning high quality poster created by Natural History Illustrator Gina Cranson by emailing her at: email@example.com
They are $15 each plus $10 postage within Australia.
I find the Aussie Bee site a fantastic resource for those wanting to learn more and for those wanting (OHHH PLEASE DO!) to set up their own Native Bee Hive. You won't be rewarded with much honey, that is true but you will be helping the environment!
Or you could go all out...
Last year I had my favourite Australian Native Bee, The Blue Banded Bee, Amegilla cingulata, tattooed on the top of my right wrist because I was so surprised at the huge number of people at all my presentations and talks that had no idea we had Native Bees in this country. I thought he would promote conversation and awareness, and he has done just that! Bless him. I have nothing against European Honey Bees and they need our support but if you live in Australia, please do not forget our Natives. They need us!
So what can you do right now to help these little guys? Plant natives! My number one, grows nearly everywhere flowering Australian Native is Pandorea.
Here's one of mine that is in flower at the moment ~
Beautiful and helpful and most days, buzzing with Native bees!
Also check in with your local councils, garden centres, libraries for local knowledge of your local natives. Plant things which belong where you live and you will see your Native Bees hopefully return.
May Nature always bless you and may you in turn always be a blessing to Nature!