The importance of pollinators
Recently Holland have decided to cover hundreds of bus stops with plants as a "gift to honeybees".
It is estimated that 70 out of 100 crop species that provide 90% of food worldwide are pollinated by bees alone. Honey bees are an incredibly important pollinator of food crops. However, they are not the only important pollinator. Other bees such as the humble bumblebee also play an important role in pollination, as do different species of bats, birds and other animals from the insect family.
Seven bee species are now on the endangered species list and many other bee species are rapidly declining. Whilst all species are important and play a role in the ecosystems they are found in, a loss of pollinators would be especially bad news for us as humans as we rely on them far more than most people realise. It has been estimated that to replace the ecosystem services provided by bees would be 265 billion Euros!
Holland’s green roofed bus stops is inspirational and something that could be applied to many cities across the world, and beyond bus stop roofs. Not only does this wonderful idea help pollinators, green roofs reduce stormwater runoff, provide insulation, reduce the urban heat island effect and enhance the natural environment.
Feel inspired? Here are a few things you can do yourself:
- Plant pollinator friendly plants
- Include native plants in your garden
- Minimise the use of pesticides
- Provide a source of water
- Build an insect house
- Leave parts of your garden/hedgerows untidy and wild
- Spread the word
- Write to your local council to ask them to plant more wildflowers
- Lobby government to set more stringent pesticide use regulations
Read more at: Holland covers hundreds of bus stops with plants as gift to honeybees
The value of bees