A number of yellow-faced types of Hawaiian bees have been added to the endangered species list as the paradisiacal island’s ecosystem depends on their extinction or salvation.
The cause of the yellow-faced bees decrease in numbers is, for once, not entirely related to humanity’s destructive tendencies. Although the island’s development, the use of crop dusters that fail to take the pollinators into consideration and the more frequent interactions between the bees local habitat and humans are part of the problem, the bees main issue comes from Mother Nature itself, more specifically in the form of invading species.
The seven species of yellow-faced bees included in the plan are a vital part of the ecosystem as they help pollinate other endangered species native to Hawaii, but they are slowly but surely being overridden by Indian bees and ants.
The native bees have a lot on their plate as the Indian bees are driving them out of their habitat and taking over their nests and the “alien ants”, non-native to the island, are feasting on their larvae, thus impeding the yellow-faced bees reproduction and renewal circle.
Whilst the issue may seem like a lost cause due to Hawaii’s numerous invaders, local authorities are optimistic with regards to the bee population’s extinction or salvation ratio, the balance tipping towards the latter now that they have been included on the endangered list.
Besides the normal interdiction that forbids man from harming or killing bees, researchers and entomologists are already coming up with new and innovative ideas that are set to help protect the pollinators whilst not intruding in nature’s way.
One such innovator is the University of Hawaii’s Jason Graham, who through his studies has determined the bees most likely habitats as being in the coral rock holes and the stems of plants, which are used for laying eggs and sealing nests. In an effort to assure that their nesting places are safe, the entomologist has designed an artificial nest composed of wooden blocks, readily drilled into so as to provide holes, with all of this covered in a sticky substance whose purpose is to stop the ants from reaching into the nests.
Besides offering an already made, safer environment, the artificial nests could also be placed in the areas where the bee population was mostly reduced and also encourage them to set up habitats in new places, as the pollinated plants offer cover not only to the bees but also to other animals, ensuring the continuity of the circle of life readily set by nature.
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