When it comes to small-scale, daily actions for the planet, some things are just wired into our brains like remembering your reusable bags, avoiding palm oil and saving the bees.
From a young age, we are taught about the importance of bees. These buzzing, flower-seeking workers keep our food systems going from dawn till dusk. Understated champions of agriculture and food chains, bees need to be celebrated and protected.
They are the smallest members of our Mozambique partnership and have been a hive of activity lately.
The forested corridors that line Mount Namuli and its lush river valleys are home to peach, eucalyptus and namuresse trees. Like the local traditional healers or “curandeira”, bees forage these flowers until they find all the ingredients needed to produce honey.
Yet life in recent years has been a challenge for the humble Namuli bee. Intensive agriculture and plumes of smoke from fires lit to clear forest have destroyed natural hives and rid the ground of flowering plants. This has forced bees to higher altitudes to seek out food from the forest.
Recently though, the winds of change are clearing the air. With the support of Cool Earth and partner organisation Legado, local communities are harnessing the potential bees have to offer, and earning a living too.
Supporters like you have funded training for twenty local beekeepers, who have been provided with technical help on sustainable honey production and harvesting techniques. With access to a market for their honey and continued community awareness building, alternative income opportunities are aiding the control of fires.
Training beekeepers in more sustainable methods is a priority in the coming months. In the past, the collection of wild honey meant the physical destruction of the colony, as well as the surrounding trees. Now, by reducing the use of fire, local people are protecting the bees’ homes and food sources.
As a sweet reward, local people are producing honey to sell and becoming financially resilient. By supporting beekeepers, there is also the knock-on effect of keeping the forest healthy for the bees and other species too.
When it comes to saving the rainforest, it’s proving to be the little things that make the biggest changes.