You will be taken aback by the reason behind this.
In the Shennongjia national park at the center of the Hubei province, China, on a steep cliff are hundreds of wood boxes hanging around. What is the reason for it?
Like every other country in the world, many bee species in China are on the verge of extinction (Some species have already gone extinct). As reported by South China Morning Post, it is calculated that about 80% of the native honey bees have disappeared.
The reason is because of the emergence of a European honey bee species (Science name: Apis mellifera) as it was exported to the country in the 19th century. On preventing the consequence of the new bee species invasion, the native of the Shennongjia national park had an attempt to save their honey bees.
Their method is a special one. They made wood boxes as accommodation for the honey bees and hanging them on a high cliff. This way, they protect the bees from dangerous predators like bears feeding on honey.
They designed 700 wood boxes and hung on a cliff 1.2 kilometers high from sea level to draw the bees’ attention. To reach the boxes on such a high cliff, a bee farmer can only take down a wood box of thousand bees inside each time.
The natives’ innovation was recognized to be a bee reservation of the National park by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
Why did they choose the cliff in the Shennongjia national park to reserve bees?
The reason is that this park has diverse climates of different regions in China (Sub-tropical, warm climate, and cool climate); therefore, there is a variety of flora and fauna (1,131 plant species, 54 animal species, 190 bird species, 12 reptile species,…).
This is the ideal environment for the bees to live and develop as well as for the natives to protect the bees from extinction. According to Bee World Project, China is currently contributing to half of the world’s honey.
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