Bees: What's the buzz about World Bee Day?

Last updated at 05:20
Bumble bee

They're fuzzy and buzzy and very important to the environment.

Bees are so vital to the health of our planet that they have their own day. World Bee Day takes place on 20 May and is designed to spread awareness of the significance of bees.

This year World Bee Day will highlight that 17 species of bees have been lost from eastern England and 25 more are threatened in the area.

Campaigners want people to do more to help and protect them.

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Matt Shardlow, Chief Executive at Buglife, which did the survey said:

"Our study found that many of the rarer, more specialist bees are battling to keep up with the changing face of their landscape and increasingly hot weather.

"Although a few species have expanded their populations and range, more species are in decline, 17 species are already extinct in the region and another six species are now so endangered there are only known to survive on single sites - this is a very unhealthy picture."

Take our bee quiz to find out which bee you would be

So what's the buzz about bees?
View of honey beesScience Photo Library

A third of the world's food production depends on bees.

Bees pollinate (a process vital to crops growing) 75% of leading global crops, including oilseed rape, apples, soft fruits, beans and courgettes, as well as things like tomatoes and strawberries.

Bees are vital for the preservation of ecological balance, biodiversity in nature and help reduce pollution.

Scientific studies have proven that bees have become increasingly endangered. The UN says one million species face extinction.

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So what can be done to help?
  • Planting bee friendly plants like heather and daisies in your garden can help.
  • Leaving sections of the garden wild and letting the grass grow long gives the bees a place to shelter.
  • Leaving a small dish with a few pebbles and shallow water in can help if a bee is thirsty.
  • Don't use pesticides as they are really harmful to bees.