Bee-ing Grateful

Feb 11, 2009

There are so many caring, kindhearted and generous people out there concerned about the plight of the honey bee.

From little girls who share their monthly allowance and birthday gifts, to all the schools, organizations and businesses  who donate to the honey bee research fund at the Department of Entomology at the University of California, Davis, the cry to "Save the Honey Bees" is resounding throughout the world.

In particular, the response to the Häagen-Dazs'  educational Web site, has been overwhelming.

Häagen-Dazs stepped forward in February of 2008 to help save the honey bees. They launched a national campaign, established a scientific advisory group, created the Web site and a new Vanilla Honey Bee flavor, and donated a total of $250,000 toward honey bee research at UC Davis and Pennsylvania State. They're also working to help fund a honey bee haven at UC Davis.

Approximately 50 percent of the Häagen-Dazs flavors are directly attributed to honey bee pollination. In fact, one-third of all we eat (fruits, vegetables and nuts) is pollinated by bees.

The declining bee population worries us all.

Enter California poet Michele Krueger. While enjoying a pint of Häagen-Dazs ice cream and accessing the Häagen-Dazs Web site, she was inspired to write a poem about honey bees. She donated the poem to the UC Davis Department of Entomology.

In her email, Krueger wrote:  "I am a poet from Northern California (Lake County) and concerned about the bee crisis, too."

We thank her for her concern and her donation. Here is her poem:



Be the best you can be,



For me.


Please pollinate

my berries,


sip nectar from

my flowers,


so you will have

the strength to fly


back and forth

for hours.


You have work to do,

Worker Bee,


for fruit tree

and for me.


Servant of Queen,

Feeder of Drone,

Soldier of Hive,

Miner of Gold,


I award you


Employee of the Season.


Honey is my reason.
 (Copyright, Michelle Krueger, Lake County, Calif.)

Which reminds us: last spring we watched scores of honey bees pollinate the nectarine blossoms in our back yard. Their work ethic dominates the insect world, and indeed, the entire world.  They are definitely  "employees of the season."

And "employees of the year."

Every year.

By Kathy Keatley Garvey
Author - Communications specialist

Attached Images:

PURE GOLD--A honey bee in a nectarine blossom. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Honey bee in nectarine blossom