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Urban Beekeeping Bad For Bees?


The upswing in urban beekeeping is yet another example of creating one problem by using flawed logic to solve another. If we truly wish to help our fellow animals, instead of “using them,” we ought to offer them the sanctuary they so desperately need. As professor Francis Ratnieks suggests, planting wild flowers and keeping a chemical free yard are gifts anyone can give to honey bees and other native pollinators in their area.

I would also go a step further to suggest giving up honey in general, as this is the honeybee’s winter food reserve, which they are obviously in need of.

Putting aside what honey is and the purpose it serves for the bees themselves, it is an unnecessary part of our diet. And as this study shows, whether you get honey from your neighbor’s backyard or the store, the hive that created it had to work hard to do so.** Just in case you didn’t know, a honeybee colony will collectively have to travel over 55,000 miles (or more) to make just one pound of honey.

Especially with the marked decline over the past few years in the population of bees, both “kept” and wild, it is time to stop using and keeping bees and to start planting more pesticide and herbicide-free wild flower gardens!

 

** Potentially coming into contact with pesticides and other harmful chemicals along the way.

* Published by The Society of Biology

Related Stories:

Three Reasons Not to Eat Honey
Backyard Chicken Farming Fails
Eco-friendly Animal Products?
The Missing Children You Won’t See on Milk Cartons

Sources:

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2013/08/12/211413350/londons-urban-beekeepers-are-bad-for-bees-scientists-say
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/earthnews/10235916/Rise-in-urban-beekeeping-a-threat-to-bees.html
http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2010/12/10-amazzzzing-bee-facts-infographic/

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Alisa Rutherford-Fortunati

Gentle World is a vegan intentional community and non-profit organization, whose core purpose is to help build a more peaceful society, by educating the public about the reasons for being vegan, the benefits of vegan living, and how to go about making such a transition. For more information about vegan food and other aspects of a vegan lifestyle, visit the Gentle World website and subscribe to our monthly newsletter.

197 comments

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3:27AM PDT on Sep 7, 2013

Save Bees

4:37AM PDT on Sep 6, 2013

thanks

1:10PM PDT on Aug 31, 2013

Thank you for the post.

4:21AM PDT on Aug 29, 2013

thanks for sharing :)

1:33AM PDT on Aug 29, 2013

"But corn doesn’t provide flowers for bees to feed on, cutting out an important food source for bees between seasons"...............saw this in one of Dale O's comments, seems to be a quote that was made in another member's post. Aaah, but not true. Corn stalks cannot produce ears without having been pollinated. Technically, the stalks do not have "flowers", true, but at the top of each stalk there will be "silk" which contains POLLEN. Without having insects cross-pollinate the stalks, and there must be more than one "variety", the stalks will just grow tall and not produce ears of CORN. A few years back, my stallion got into my garden before I got a "hot tape" fence around it and ate the entire outer row of corn stalks to about 12" from the ground. At the time, they were not mature, had not produced "silk" tassles. I knew that the row he ate never would, and was going to pull them up, but was advised I could manually "pollinate" by hand from the silk on the other stalks. Normally, bees do that, but we never notice.

8:32PM PDT on Aug 28, 2013

Wild bees are pretty much everywhere, yes, even in urban areas. Wild bees would include any colony that is not in a hive maintained and "kept" BY HUMAN BEINGS, aka "beekeepers". Wild bees generally won't travel so far to forage that they go into densely populated urban business districts, but even there, people can contribute to helping them by planting proper "floral" crops in their yards, assuming they have a yard, or planter boxes, or as is being done in many cities, on rooftops. NYC, for example, is converting many buildings into having hydroponic gardens on the roofs of condominiums and apartments and warehouses.

To keep things clear, I did not comment about use of the word, "salve" at all. That was Dale O.

4:09PM PDT on Aug 28, 2013

I cannot find the post and if you agree with the post, that said in so many words, Why cannot we have fruit plants everywhere, then this is my response.

As long as it does not take any more land and water (growing on walls and roofs and Etc., and recylce water), and does not use fertilizers, pesticides, GMOs and such BAD things!

4:06PM PDT on Aug 28, 2013

Dimitris D.,

Sorry, attention in too many places, while reading your post, sorry. Just ignore my previous post. I reported it as mistake and asked it to be removed, Care2 needs to have edit options for posts, so I edit and delete after posting. Sure, I do not need it a lot; however, such posts drive me as crazy as other members, for it eating space.

3:58PM PDT on Aug 28, 2013

Malgorzata Z.,

Since this a USA (and maybe, UK- though never seen) English Language website and I (and I am sure many other English language only members) would like to understand what you posted, could you please:

Post in USA or I guess UK English Language (figure we might be able to understand), if you know how to write in USA or I guess UK English Language?

Or If you do not know how to write in USA or I guess UK English Language,

Then could you please type out what you are going to post and use one of the many free translation websites* to translate what you are typed and post in on website in the future?

*- I do this every time I am trying contact people, within foreign websites that do not offer translation in English Language or does not communicate that they understand The English Language. I have recently used http://translation2.paralink.com/; but have used others in the past and seen little difference.

Sorry, other members, but using www.care2.com’s messaging does not allow enough characters, tried to send the above through that service.

2:07PM PDT on Aug 28, 2013

Dale O., Diane L & Any Other Member Confused About What I Posted,

With my previous post, below, I forgot to mention parts wild bees of wild hives do naturally (if you set aside the pressures our species put upon them without using them) relocate, because more than one queen occupies each hive.

"Dale O., Diane L & Any Other Member Confused About What I Posted,

"I suspect, Diane L that 'Great White' E wasn't speaking of salves when he was making his 'freedom at last' analogy... Read more: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/urban-beekeeping-bad-for-bees.html#ixzz2dGpwhHkI"

Actually, I was. My point was we have become so far from being with natural and Other Beings (fear, belief that this is the only way it can be done, misunderstanding and Etc.)* that we will not allow the specific family of bees that is used in Ag. (including food production) live wild with us. Read more: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/urban-beekeeping-bad-for-bees.html#ixzz2dGsmIZom I believe there should now need for supplying them with portable boxes as hives and then forcing them to move way too much. The Bees we use as slaves should be allowed to create, stay in one location longer and when for their own benefits move and create their own hives at other locations. Lastly, they should not be smoked even once, see below also, we truly do not know the possible side effects of it and it is rarely happening to wild bees. Our species has not been with natural world for a long time now*, horri

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