Bee population declining in peninsula due to pesticides, says consumer group

GEORGE TOWN: It is currently difficult to find beehives in the peninsula, and many traditional beekeepers themselves admit that bee colonies are also decreasing, according to Consumers Association Penang (CAP).

Its senior education officer N.V. Subbarow said the use of pesticides on crops, synthetic fertilisers, genetically modified crops, and climate change are among the main reasons for the declining bee population in the country.

"Their (bees) importance cannot be overlooked as bees are responsible for 80% of the world’s food supply. About 70 out of the top 100 crops that humans consume, which supply up to 90% of the world’s nutrition are pollinated by bees.

"The widespread use of pesticides threatens bees, causing their numbers to dwindle. Additionally, unplanned land development also impacts the habitat of these pollinators,” he told Bernama in conjunction with World Bee Day, which is celebrated on Monday (May 20).

Accordingly, he suggested the community to set up more organic farms because they tend to support higher biological diversity and better bee health thus preventing the extinction of bees.

The community could also plant some of their own food crops without using pesticides and synthetic fertilisers as the cultivation of flowering vegetables, fruits, and herbs could attract bees.

To raise awareness about the importance of saving bees, the association has also conducted outreach sessions in several schools, including Sekolah Rendah Jenis Kebangsaan Tamil Pengkalan Hulu, Perak.

The session was attended by 100 students and teachers from three surrounding schools. - Bernama

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CAP , Bees , N.V.Subbarow , Beehives , Declining


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