Monday, 9 April 2012

Ultimate Blog Challenge Blog 8 Helping the Bees


Bees are an essential part of how our eco-system works! Without the Bees and other pollinating insects, our flowers and plants would die and the knock on effect could be catastrophic!

Neonicotinoid Insecticides

Neonicotinoids are a class of insecticides/pesticides, which work on the central nervous system of insects.

Although there is currently not enough evidence to show that Neonicotinoids, which are a synthetic derivative of nicotine, are definitely responsible for the decline in the Bees, countries such as Germany, France and Italy have imposed bans on them and since doing so, have started to see the Bee population thrive again! Doesn’t that say something?? According to recent research, Neonicotinoids are thought to be over 7000 times more toxic than DDT, which was banned in the UK in 1984, so why are the agricultural communities still able to use something that is so highly toxic?!

You can find a list of names of all the pesticides and insecticides under the Neonicotinoid umbrella by searching the internet.

There are thought to be other contributing factors in the decline of the Bees such as climate change, pollution, the increase in toxic products in house-holds which need to be addressed too!

What you can do to help!

• Help spread the word!

• Stop using harmful pesticides and insecticides. There are some great alternative products available using just natural ingredients. Or why not try using soap nuts!! Make a soap nut solution by placing 50 grams of soap nuts in a blender with 1 litre of water. Blend.

Once the soap nuts are completed blended, strain and pour into a spray bottle along with approx. 10 ml of preservative such as citric acid or grapefruit seed extract then spray your plants!!

• Plant Bee friendly plants and herbs in your garden or in a container if you have no space. Lavender, Buddleia (also great for attracting butterflies!), Clover and Honeysuckle are just a few.

• Make or buy a Bee hotel. Most garden centres sell these now but there are plenty of online resources to show you how to make your own

• Buy organic produce! Organic farmers will not have sprayed the produce with harmful pesticides and insecticides. Try to buy from a local farmer if possible.

• Stop using harmful products in the home. There are a lot of affordable, non-toxic and eco-friendly products available.

• If you are going to buy honey, preferably local, and make sure it’s from a reputable source that you trust and you know look after their Bees!

Information compiled by Chez Watkins - thank you.

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