This week Galway Bay FM looked at work monitoring wild Irish honeybee colonies with Chiara Binetti, Research Assistant with University of Galway Honey Bee Research Centre.
Did you know…
- The Irish honey bee is considered a unique subspecies native to Ireland, making it important for biodiversity preservation.
- There are concerns about the hybridization of Irish honey bees with other honey bee subspecies, as this can dilute genetic purity of the native population.
- Irish honey bees play a crucial role in pollinating various native plants, wildflowers and crops, contributing to the agricultural productivity of the island.
Why is it important that every effort is made to protect Irish honey bees?
- Biodiversity: Irish honey bees have adapted to the local environment over thousands of years, contributing to the natural balance of nature.
- Cultural and Historical Significance: Irish honey bees have a long history in traditional beekeeping practices and folklore. Protecting them helps maintain cultural connections and historical traditions.
- Scientific Research: Irish honey bees offer valuable insights into the study of bee behaviour, health and conservation. Protecting them allows for ongoing research that benefits the broader understanding of honey bee populations.
What can I do to help support the protection of Irish honey bees?
- Plant Bee-Friendly Flowers: Creating a bee-friendly garden by planting native wildflowers and other nectar-rich plants that provide food for honey bees.
- Avoid Pesticides: Minimize the use of pesticides and herbicides in your garden or on your property. Choose natural and organic alternatives.
- Support Local Beekeepers: Purchase honey and other bee-related products from local beekeepers who practice responsible and sustainable beekeeping.
Here’s a few websites if you want to know more!
www.irishbeekeeping.ie – The official website of the Irish Beekeepers Association
www.biodiversityireland.ie – National Biodiversity Data Centre
www.pollinators.ie – The website dedicated to the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan