When I was a kid, I got stung by bees at least once a summer, usually by stepping on them. Every summer, I ran around barefoot and paid the price for it by having swollen, painful feet at least once a summer. There were bees all over our 2 acre yard, and my feet found them on a regular basis. By the time I was 8, I felt bad for killing the bees I stepped on, but not nearly as bad as my children would now.
The bees are dying. For years, those of us who have payed attention have been fighting to save the bees. But our cries have gone unheard, especially when our voices were raised in accusation of insecticides. We've been told that insecticides couldn't possibly be killing the bees, that it must be some dread disease. They were right.
It's not only the insecticides that are killing the bees. It's also fungicides. In an article published recently, scientists discovered that colonies that had high levels of fungicides were more susceptible to Nosema infection. This is important because bees are pollinators. Without pollinators, humans would lose most of our consumable crops.
I am not trying to be an alarmist. But that friendly bee at the top of the page? He's the only bee we've seen all season. In fact, he's so unusual that Dominic has sat and stared and him, oohed and ahed over him, and basically been completely fascinated. That's not to say that bees are not worthy of fascination, for certainly they are. Rather, it's to point out how conspicuously absent bees are from our yard.
So, here's my plea. We, as homeowners, can make the choice to remove pesticides from our yards. Not only will it save you money, and help the bees, it will also reduce pesticides in the ground water. Who wants to drink pesticides?