When organic gardens are grown in urban areas at housing societies’ open spaces, home terraces and backyards, it is possible to keep bee boxes in these organic gardens and carry out scientific beekeeping effectively. Thus, urban gardening and urban beekeeping go hand in hand and help boost nature conservation. Let us see this connection in detail.
Photo: Bee, the best pollinator
Scientific Beekeeping, if carried out meticulously in urban areas, has following advantages :-
a) Bee pollination service results into
decrease in environmental pollution with
increase in overall biodiversity of home gardens or farms and its surrounding areas where actual beekeeping is being done.
b) Urban beekeepers acquire pure natural honey and other bee based products such as bees wax, pollen, etc. from their own bee boxes. It’s safe and satisfying to use these home grown bee products.
c) These days life has become stressful in cities and metropolises. Beekeeping
If urban beekeeping is taken up as serious hobby, then it helps kill boredom and has power to heal many psychosomatic disorders related to loneliness, depression, etc.
d) Urban beekeeping results into increase in awareness about importance of bees in nature. Anthropocentric approach gradually converts into ecocentric approach and this substantial change in outlook boosts up bee conservation in cities. Otherwise citizens will continue killing bees and destroying bee hives out of sheer fear and ignorance if there is lack of consciousness.
e) Urban beekeeper develops environment friendly practices like growing organic gardens or farms (in which use of acute toxic chemical fertilizers, insecticides, etc. is avoided), adopting toxin free living (which means going for chemical free lifestyle as much as possible), etc.
Requirement for Urban Beekeeping:-
i) A person needs to achieve knowledge about scientific urban beekeeping by reading relevant books and getting training from expert instructor.
ii) A person needs to gain knowledge about bee friendly flora for developing organic garden/farm where beekeeping will be practised.
iii) A person needs to get awareness about using empty spaces that fall between concrete buildings, nearly barren or unused landscapes (hills, hillocks, wastelands, etc.) wisely for growing bee friendly organic plantations, organic gardens or organic community gardens/farms.
Urban Beekeeping should be encouraged by central government, state governments, educational and environmental institutions as nature friendly hobby, moderate income generating profession and one of the effective means for nature conservation in concrete jungles.
Since it is one of the basic principles of ecology that everything is connected to everything else in nature, if one species goes completely extinct, it affects the existence of other dependent species. Hence, if honeybees goes extinct, it will certainly affect the existence of other dependent species like bee pollinated plants. And ultimately very existence of human beings will be in danger. This phenomenon has been posited long ago by Albert Einstein. Now, it’s a need of today’s times to become ‘Friends of Bees‘. It is a proven fact that regarding any social or environmental issue, effective outcome can be achieved with the help of people’s participation. So, let’s come together to save honeybees for saving ourselves and our dear planet earth.
Written by Priya Phulambrikar
(Team Bee Basket)