Bees Under Threat


What Pollinating Bees Do for Us

  • The World would be a much less colourful place without these important pollinators. 90% of flowering plants rely on them for reproduction, so it is safe to say that we can’t live without them!
  • Pollinators are an integral part of the production and consumption of food, with only 28 crops not relying on animal pollinating agents. Bees are responsible for 1 out 3 bites you take each day!
  • The pollinator-dependent crops are a necessary part of our diet. Not only do they produce the food we eat but also provide us with essential nutrients and help in sustaining life on Earth as well!
  • Fruits such as apples, plums and citrus fruits rely heavily upon bees for reproduction while many vegetables like tomatoes require insect intervention before production can begin; without them, there would be no grocery store shopping experience at all because these numerous types depend entirely on insects – including bees!
  • Non-edible plants also need pollinators – think about the flowering plants we use for animal fodder, flowers, firewood, building materials, dyes, oils, fibres, medicines and many more.
  • Globally, bees are the most important pollinator.


Of the more than 1000 known species of bees in Southern Africa, one is the honey bee Apis Melilfera. Two subspecies are recognised: African Honey Bee and the Cape Honey Bee.

African Honey Bee

(Apis mellifera scutellata)

Native to central, southern and eastern Africa outside of the winter rainfall regions. The African Honey Bee has more of a yellow-striped abdomen and is more aggressive than the Cape Honey Bee.

Cape Honey Bee

(Apis mellifera capensis)

Found in the winter rainfall regions of South Africa. While still having the characteristic honey bee striped abdomen, the Cape Honey Bee is darker in colour.

What Can I Do to Help Bees?

Build a Year Round Pollinator Garden With Native Plants

Native plants, such as fynbos, are the best source of nectar and pollen because they’re adapted to local soils, climates or environments. These types of food sources suit bees well since these insects need native plant matter as their primary sustenance! Most native plants are low-maintenance and don’t need irrigation or fertilizers.

Create Nesting Spots in Your Garden

If you want to attract more bees, install nesting materials like bamboo stalks or blocks of wood with drilled holes in them. You can also provide loose soil for ground-nesting species around your house near your home where there is native plant life that they may be using as food sources already present on the property (ex: trees).

Be Careful When Using Pesticides

Consider switching to organic herbicides, fungicides and insecticides! These will not only help the environment but also give better results. When applying them make sure it is early in the day or late at night so bees have ample foraging time. Want to learn more about what poison labels mean and how to choose low environmental impact poisons? Click here.

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Help conserve Cape Town’s diverse wildlife. Reduce secondary poisoning – THINK BEFORE YOU POISON.

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