National Bee Count: Thousands of volunteers will spend half an hour to count bees

Thousands of volunteers will again spend half an hour counting bees in their own neighborhoods this weekend. Last year, more than 3,000 people participated in the National Bee Count. Together they counted about 70,000 bees and hoverflies. Like the year before, the honeybee finished in first place, but the number of honeybees is declining, according to organizers of the bee count, which is being held for the sixth time this year.

Bee experts are curious to know if this year’s mild winter and very late night frosts are affecting the number of bees counted. The mild winter caused the animals to awaken too early from hibernation. There was not yet enough food for them outside. Furthermore, the late night frosts caused early flowering plants to freeze. These will not bloom, while bees need the pollen from flowers.

Bees have been struggling for years. There are nearly 360 species of bees in the Netherlands. More than half of them are considered endangered. Bees are important for the pollination of edible crops and other plants. To help the bees, flower-rich roadsides, embankments and green spaces are being planted as much as possible throughout the country.

Those who want to participate in the bee count can find a count form on the website There is also a guide containing the sixteen most common bee species in the Netherlands.

Reporting by ANP

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