The importance of bees in nature and biodiversity


Bees being part of the ecosystem shape the ecological relationships, ecosystem conservation and its stability, plant community genetic variation, floral diversity, evolution, and specialization. Although their role is hardly noticeable, bees play a vital role in the terrestrial ecosystems where there is green vegetation cover for not less than four months in a year. Most of the animal species in the savannah woodlands, mangrove, and tropical forests and the temperate deciduous forests would be existing or surviving without bees. This is because the existence of nuts, berries, fruits and trees greatly depend on pollination and bees are the primary pollinators in the terrestrial ecosystem. In farmed lands, they are required for the pollination of cultivated crops and ensuring that biodiversity is maintained. Bees also have a symbiotic relationship with other animal species. This is because other animals either eat the brood or honey, wax, pollen or because they are the bee’s parasites.

Taking a careful look and consideration of the many existing and different kinds of flowers, one cannot help but notice how they have developed as an adaptation to the bees and other pollinators. These bees and the flowering plants have come to develop a complex relationship that is wholly dependent. Research has estimated that close to 80% of flowering plants are entomophilous. What makes honey bees efficient is their high numbers, their habits and their behavior of scrounging on a particular plant species at a time. Bees depend on flowers for food, that is, nectar or pollen. Both pollen and nectar are meant to ensure the next generation of plants. Bee products like bee pollen pills, royal jelly capsules, and more can be taken advantage of by the public. They serve many health benefits like skin care, energy boosting abilities, immune and gastrointestinal system benefits. Unlike other insects, bees are quite hairy. This quality allows them to transport pollen from one flower to another. In most cases, the bees will regurgitate some nectar and mix it with pollen, and this ensures that the pollen doesn’t fall off its hairs during flight. Different plants require different amounts of pollen for fertilization to take place. This means that bees are needed to make a certain number of visits to fertilize these flowers. In most scenarios, bees can visit between fifty and a thousand flowers in a single trip.

If bees did not exist, the biodiversity wouldn’t be this high. The high biodiversity in tropical forests can be attributed to the specialized interrelationships between bees and trees. The trees will be pollinated by bees, and this leads to the production of food for other species. Normally, biodiversity is highest in tropical forest areas and quite low in the Arctic region. The existence of a stable environment creates the possibility of the development and specialization in narrow ecological niches. This stable environment ensures that vegetative reproduction is continuous. However, most conditions are not stable, and this forces both the flora and fauna to adapt for their survival. The need for various genetically adapted plants is essential as it ensures that the plants that are better suited because of their genetic constitutions survive. All this is made possible from pollination carried out by bees in the ecosystem.