World Bee Day Date in the current year: May 20, 2018

World Bee Day World Bee Day is an official United Nations observance held on May 20 each year. Its main goal is to raise awareness of the importance of bees for pollination and their contribution to sustainable development.

Bees and other pollinators, such as butterflies, hummingbirds and some bat species, play a very important part in agriculture because without them many plants, including many food crops, wouldn’t be able to reproduce. Bees make an invaluable contribution to food security and conserving biodiversity. Besides, bee populations help to evaluate the health of local ecosystems and emergent environmental risks.

Unfortunately, the number of bees has declined dramatically over the past few decades, mainly due to the so-called colony collapse disorder (CCD). Alongside CCD, bee decline has been attributed to factors including pesticides and insecticides, monocropping practices, land-use change and invasive insects.

World Bee Day was established to raise awareness of pollinator decline and the importance of bee conservation. Honey bees are essential for pollinating crops such as passion fruit, macadamia, squash, pumpkin, zucchini, watermelon, Brazil nut and kiwifruit, and extremely important for pollinating many other crops, from apples to mango to buckwheat, so bee extinction would be a heavy blow to agriculture and food security.

World Bee Day is observed on May 20 because it is the birthday of Anton Janša, a famous Slovenian apiarist who is known as a pioneer of modern apiculture and a great expert in beekeeping.

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Category

UN Observances

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World Bee Day, UN observances, pollinators, honey bees, bee decline, bee extinction, Anton Janša