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Style whisperer Megan Morton and her four year old daughter Bea have joined forces with Hello Toes to make children's socks that aim to help save the hardest working, unsung hero of our ecosystem - the honeybee.

Why honeybees?

Often only associated with their honey or unfortunate stings, honeybees are the world's most essential farmers, responsible for pollinating approximately 65% of all food crops, as well as pastures that sustain the meat and dairy industries.  Their hard work results in $14 billion worth of food grown annually in the US alone.  In Australia, this figure is thought to be between $2-4 billion.  But the honeybee is vanishing in enormous numbers, with 30% dying or disappearing in some regions in just the past year.  

Obviously their mysterious demise could be catastrophic.  As Einstein was quoted as saying "No more honeybees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man.  If the honeybee disappears off the surface of the globe, then man would have only four years of life left".

Why is this happening?

Whilst the clear reaspn why the honeybee is vanishing in such great numbers is still as mystery, there are some factors being considered as possible causes:

-  The redesign of our farming system to become predominantly monocultures, where large expanses grown just a single crop starve the bees of the essential pollen and nectar they need to survive

-  Single crops also invite pests, which then results in the use of systemic pesticides, which besides protecting the crop also attack the bee's nervous system

-  Australian bee researcher Dr Denis Anderson also identified and named the tiny mite, Varroa destructor, which has been labeled as the most serious honeybee killer globally.  Fortunately this mite has not yet reached Australia but is expected to in the near future as it has already arrived in New Zealand.

All of these factors are clear indicators that our livelihood is under threat, and completely unsustainable.

How are Hello Toes, Bea and Megan Morton trying to help?

$2 from each pair (plus a bonus spare) of the very special 'Save The Bees' socks will be donated to Dr Denis Anderson's organisation Bees Downunder to help fund long-term research into ways in which we can protect the bees, and therefore our own way of life.

What else can you do to help?

-  Teach your children to not be frightened of bees, but to respect and protect them

-  Plant bee-friendly plants in your garden

-  Stop using insecticides

-  Support local beekeepers like Rooftop Honey in Melbourne and The Urban Beehive in Sydney

-  Become a bee keeper yourself