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May 20: World Bee Day

Sunday, May 24, 2020 14:45 [IST]

Last Update: Sunday, May 24, 2020 09:11 [IST]

May 20: World Bee Day

Bees are the ambassadors of pollinators

RANJAN K BARUAH
What comes to our mind when we hear honey for money? Something which may be common or uncommon but honey has been source of livelihood for many around the world. When we talk about honey we talk about honey bee. We are aware that bees and other pollinators, such as butterflies are increasingly under threat from human activities. For healthy nature and ecosystem pollination is must. Nearly 90% of the world’s wild flowering plant species depend, entirely, or at least in part, on animal pollination, along with more than 75% of the world’s food crops and 35% of global agricultural land. It shows how important is the process for our biodiversity and our own survival.
Bees are under threat. Present species extinction rates are 100 to 1,000 times higher than normal due to human impacts. Close to 35 percent of invertebrate pollinators, particularly bees and butterflies, and about 17 percent of vertebrate pollinators, such as bats, face extinction globally.
To raise awareness of the importance of pollinators, the threats they face and their contribution to sustainable development, the United Nations designated 20 May as World Bee Day(WBD). The goal is to strengthen measures aimed at protecting bees and other pollinators, which would significantly contribute to solving problems related to the global food supply and eliminate hunger in developing countries.
This day has been celebrated since 2018, thanks to the efforts of the Government of Slovenia with the support of Apimondia that led the United Nations General Assembly to declare 20 May as WBD.The date for this observance was chosen as it was the day Anton Janša, a pioneer of modern apiculture, was born. Janša came from a family of beekeepers in Slovenia, where beekeeping is an important agricultural activity with a long-standing tradition. This year’s theme is “Bee Engaged” with a specific focus on bee production and good practices adopted by beekeepers to support their livelihoods and deliver good quality products.
There is no doubt that the recent COVID-19 pandemic has had an undeniable impact on the lives of billions on earth and beekeeping sector has been affected too. This year, World Bee Day shall focus on bee production and good practices adopted by beekeepers to support their livelihoods and deliver good quality products. Bee keeping can be one of the best options for rural livelihood and we need to encourage bee keepers.
To ensure effective pollinations we have to do whatever we can do from our side. We may plant diverse native plants and discourage use of pesticides in gardens. One of the best options to support bee keepers could be buying raw honey from local farmers. As we are talking about self reliant due to COVID 19 pandemic bee keeping can be encouraged in a larger scale as honey means money and it also helps our bio diversity.
(With direct inputs from UN publication and feedback may be sent to bkranjan@gmail.com)

Sikkim at a Glance

  • Area: 7096 Sq Kms
  • Capital: Gangtok
  • Altitude: 5,840 ft
  • Population: 6.10 Lakhs
  • Topography: Hilly terrain elevation from 600 to over 28,509 ft above sea level
  • Climate:
  • Summer: Min- 13°C - Max 21°C
  • Winter: Min- 0.48°C - Max 13°C
  • Rainfall: 325 cms per annum
  • Language Spoken: Nepali, Bhutia, Lepcha, Tibetan, English, Hindi