A honey bee (Apis mellifera) covered in pollen in pumpkin, Germany
© Konrad Wothe/Minden Picture
Creating a buzz. Buzzing for World Bee Day
In 2017, the United Nations designated 20 May as World Bee Day, a date chosen as it marks the birth of Anton Janša, who pioneered modern beekeeping techniques in his native Slovenia during the 18th century. The purpose of World Bee Day is to spread awareness of the importance of bees and other pollinators – such as butterflies, birds and even bats – the threats they face and their contribution to sustainable development, food security and biodiversity. The European honey bee (Apis mellifera) on our homepage is one of around 20,000 different species of bees in the world – and by far the most prolific maker of honey.