Image: Australian Plasterer Bee of the Colletidae family--50% of all Australian bee species are said to be family members.
This blog post is especially for our dear Australian followers and customers. Please mark your calendars for November 10-17, 2019, and find a way to participate in raising bee awareness.
Pollination is vital to our food chain. Over 75% of flowering plants depend on insects to reproduce, because they can’t get around on their own. In most cases, wind pollination is insufficient, considering that every third bite of food we eat was pollinated by a bee.
Australia has some amazing bees that are found nowhere else. For instance, the APW mascot, Rita, is a charming reed bee. The indigenous ‘reed bee’ is one of about 80 species within the Exoneura genus. This bee makes no honey but is still considered an important pollinator.
And then there is the gem-green and non-aggressive Green Carpenter Bee. This gentle species is extinct now on mainland Australia but still lives on Kangaroo Island. Bush fires have ravaged the soft wood that this large native bee makes her home in. Without soft wood to make her nest, this friendly bee is more in danger of extinction.
One of the highlights of the week is the availability of the brilliant 92-minute long on-demand documentary film, The Pollinators. Here is the 1:41 minute trailer:
Directed by Peter Nelson and produced by Sally Roy, Nelson and Michael Reuter, this is the fascinating true story, the untold story, of our silent-but-buzzing heroes. It clearly leaves us with the message that bees are in danger.
You can view it in many parts of Australia during Australian Pollinator Week, so check the show times here and mark it on your calendar, you won’t regret it.
Australian Pollinator Week was founded in 2015 by Dr. Megan Halcroft, and is about building community. The Wheen Bee Foundation has now become the custodian of Australian Pollinator Week. Founded by the estate of Gretchen Wheen, this charity understands the link between bees and food security, and is both nationally and internationally recognized. This bodes well for APW having a greater impact and expanding its field of influence.
So, plan to come out and join in the fun! Find local bee-oriented events in your area where bee-lovers, consumers and beekeepers come together and talk about how we can help bees and meet their needs.
If you live in the USA, here are the showtimes around the country where you can view The Pollinators.