According to Mother Nature Network, honey bees “pollinate 80 percent of our flowering crops, which constitute one-third of everything we eat.
Losing them could affect not only dietary staples such as apples, broccoli, strawberries, nuts, asparagus, blueberries, and cucumbers, but may threaten our beef and dairy industries if alfalfa is not available for feed.
One Cornell University study estimated that honeybees annually pollinate $14 billion worth of seeds and crops in the U.S. Essentially, if honeybees disappear, they could take most of our insect pollinated plants with them, potentially reducing mankind to little more than a water diet.”
One bee beats her wings 10,000 times per minute, visits at least 2,000 flowers daily, carries pollen and helps our food supply. This hard work makes beet thirsty, so they need to have access to safe water sources.
Yet, they often risk drowning in birdbaths or being eaten at rivers and lakes among birds, fish, frogs, and other wildlife, so they decide to fly around and land on us if we are in an outdoor pool.
In her book, The Backyard Beekeeper: An Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Keeping Bees in Your Yard and Garden, Kim Flottum, the editor of the Bee Culture magazine, claims:
“Water is used to dissolve crystallized honey, to dilute honey when producing larval food, for evaporation cooling during warm weather, and for a cool drink on a hot day. Bees know exactly where to return for the same water source. Foragers seem to seek water sources that are scented.”
Moreover, Seedles adds:
“Bees use water for:
Cooling — In the heat of summer, it is used for evaporative cooling. Similar to human-designed air conditions, the bees spread a thin film of water atop sealed brood(baby bee cells) or on the rims of cells containing larvae and eggs. The workers inside the hive then fan vigorously, setting up air flow which evaporated the water and cools the interior of the hive.
Humidity — Worker bees use water to control the humidity of the colony, not just the temperature.
Utilize Stored Food — Bees need water to dilute stored honey that has crystallized (become too high in glucose) or in the case where beekeeper feeds them dried sugar crystals, they need water to dissolve the sugar. Without water, they can’t access these food sources.
Larvae Food — Another type of bee in the hive is the nurse bee, who feeds the developing larvae. They consume large amounts of pollen, nectar, and water so that their hypopharyngeal glands can produce the jelly that is used to feed the larvae. A larvae diet can consist of water up to 80 percent the first day of larval growth and about 55 percent on the sixth day.
Digestion — They need it in the digestion and metabolization of their food, as do most organisms. “
However, we can simply help them, by taking a pan or bowl, adding marbles or pebbles and pouring water in it. In this way, they can safely land and drink it.
However, the fake quote of Sir David Attenborough, a well-known broadcaster and naturalist, spread a myth about adding sugar to the water, which can seriously harm bees. Due to its falsity, the BBC requested that Facebook remove the post, but numerous websites have copied it and keep sharing the false information.
This practice seriously endangers beets, as if the bee gets sugar from the water, it will keep returning to it instead of pollinating flowers, and soon, other bees will learn this source too. The hundreds of honey bees will store the sugar water in their hive along with honey, essentially watering down the honey.
This can additionally harm birds and other creatures as well.
Moreover, some people substitute sugar and add honey instead, which can also lead to the destruction of entire hives. Honey can contain spores of a bacteria called Paenibacillus which causes AFD (American Foulbrood disease), which is deadly to bees. In order to treat it, one should burn the entire hive.
Therefore, make sure you hydrate the bees and help their work, but do not add honey or sugar to the water