Our goal is to shape a pro-eco approach and inspire local communities to take action to improve the living conditions of wild bees. By working together, we also want to strengthen the public awareness, paying attention to the important role of bees in the ecosystem.
HOW DOES IT WORK: “PSZCZÓŁKA” SAVES WILD BEES!
Together with the University of Life Sciences in Lublin we have protected wild red mason bees. The agreement we have concluded includes, among other things, direct help in creating places where these insects can live safely. That is why we have funded special hotels for bees that are filled with cane tubes to provide shelter to them. Within the framework of the first stage of cooperation, bee houses were set up in green areas of the following schools: Szkoła Podstawowa nr 21 im. Królowej Jadwigi, Szkoła Podstawowa nr 38 im. H. Sienkiewicza, Zespół Szkół Ogólnokształcących Nr 4 im. Orląt Lwowskich, V Liceum Ogólnokształcące im. Marii Skłodowskiej-Curie and Szkoła Podstawowa nr 42 im. K. Gałczyńskiego. Bee hotels are also located in our new candy factory, in a special economic zone in Lublin, where all our employees will take care of these bee houses together. We know how important it is to educate and shape good behavior among the youngest, so we also organize educational and workshop activities within our program. During these meetings, Ph.D. students from the University of Life Sciences will help children understand why bees and their work are essential for people and the environment. Those are workshop activities, so children can actively participate in meetings. What’s more, kids learn how to easily create their own hotels for wildlife insects at home.
WHAT IS THE PROBLEM?
The number of bees, including the wild ones, is decreasing year by year. Insects die out as a result of agriculture chemistry, destruction of their habitats, climate changes, diseases and many other. According to Greenpeace, up to 1/3 of our food products require insect pollination. In Europe about 4000 varieties of vegetables and fruits are dependent on pollinating insects. If it wasn’t for bees, we would not enjoy the taste of tomatoes, cucumbers, as well as apples, pears, plums, cherries and many more. Unfortunately, wild bees have more and more difficulties in finding themselves a safe space in cities. Their habitats and hiding places are destroyed by people (e.g. through lawn mowing, leaf raking, cleaning decayed trees). It is therefore important to create places where wild bees can live safely.
WHAT SHOULD YOU KNOW ABOUT WILD BEES?
Wild bees are a species that usually lead a lonely lifestyle. They have reduced stingers and are peaceful, so they do not pose a risk to people near their habitat. The most popular places where these insects live are: empty cane stems (red mason bees), nests dug in the ground (Colletinae), vertical walls of clay houses and gorges (hairy-footed flowerbee). Wild bees do not produce honey, but are often more efficient in pollinating than honey bees. Compared to them, wildlife insects are smaller and less picky. That is why they can get to the nectar of smaller flowers where a honey bee cannot always fit. The red mason bee is named after the steps necessary to build its nest. The bee masons a nest in an empty cane stem. The red mason bee is one of the most common spring wild bees. Its flights last from the first days of April to the end of June. These insects can find food in about 150 plant species, including crops. These include all species of fruit trees, strawberries, raspberries and blackberries. Therefore, the red mason bee can successfully live near backyard gardens and orchards.
Differences between social bees and solitary bees
|SOCIAL BEES – HONEY BEE||SOLITARY BEES – RED MASON BEE|
|They live as an inseparable family divided into social classes – the workers are controlled by one mother||Each individual carries out independently from the rest|
|They sting||They don’t sting|
|Try protect their territory||They do not own a territory, are not hostile towards intruders|
|They are maintained by specialists – beekeepers||Everyone can take care of them (orchardists, amateurs, gardeners)|
YOU CAN ALSO HELP!
Each of us can actively contribute to save wild bees. You just need to:
- have a garden, terrace or balcony with nectar/honey plants such as:
- blue tansy,
- English lavender,
- common daisy,
- garden sage.
- leave half-wild corners of greenery and not destroy the natural habitats of pollinators – infrequent grass mowing in urban open spaces, and leaving a small, peaceful passage of never mowed grass
- take care of your own wild pollinators – create and set so called bee hotels,,
- use natural fertilizer,
- don’t set grass on fire.