Enhance Magazine - Page 10

did you know The Benefits of Honey Bees and Honey By Dannis Warf, Associate Certified Entomologist, Royal Pest Solutions Lately, I’m sure you’ve heard all the buzz about bees in the news. There are so many concerns about bees dying, colony collapse, and losing our pollinators. I’m from the Midwest, America’s Farmland, so this is an issue that is near and dear to my heart(land). The farming industry is very dependent on bees and other insect pollinators. Most staple crops such as wheat, rice, potatoes and corn are self- or wind-pollinated, but approximately 70% of the most widely grown fruits in the world rely on insect pollination. Bees and other insects pollinate the hundreds of thousands of acres of crops we depend on to fuel our food supply in the United States and the world. HONEY BEES ARE POLLINATING MACHINES Honey bees are pollinators, which means they move the pollen grains from the anther (the male germ cell of a plant) to the to the stigma (the female reproductive system in seed plants). This process is vital because it allows plants to reproduce, and it fertilizes cropbearing plants so that they will yield food. There are many plants and flowers where the anther and stigma mature at different times. Sometimes the pollen can be moved by the wind, but for the most part, pollen must be spread from flower to flower by insects so that new fruit can be formed. The pollen of cotton, alfalfa, blueberries, raspber