|Honey Bee (Photo by Maciej Czyzewski)|
The sweetest stars in the United States are not those on TV sets or in movie theaters. They are instead the tiny critters that tirelessly
carry pollen to where it is most needed. Why if it weren’t for bees’ “knees,” billions of dollars would be lost from the overall economy.
The White House Press Office recently published a fact sheet titled “The Economic Challenge Posed by Declining Pollinator Populations.” This sheet emphasizes that honey bees alone “account for more than 15 billion dollars through their vital role
in keeping fruits, nuts, and vegetables in our diets.”
In view of the alarming decline in bee populations, “President Obama issued a memorandum directing U.S. government agencies to take additional steps to protect and restore domestic populations of… honey bees, native bees…” and other pollinators such as butterflies and bats.
Bees have been prized throughout the ages, sometimes to the point of being worshipped. The Mayans considered honey to be the food of the gods, and paid homage to Ah-Muzen-Cab (aka “the Bee God”).
The Minoan-Mycenean goddess Potnia was known as “The Pure Mother Bee.” Her priestesses were named “Melissa” (meaning “Honey Bee” in ancient Greek). King-god Zeus was said to have been raised on honey rather than milk. Even while presiding over Mount Olympus, he continued to relish honey’s virtues.
Copyright June 21, 2014 by Linda Van Slyke All Rights Reserved