Europa 2021 -The Netherlands- Endangered Bees

The cooperating postal companies in Europe have been issuing stamps with a common theme for 65 years. The Netherlands issued Endangered Bees stamp sheet on 10 May 2021. The stamps are marked ‘Internationaal 1′, the denomination for items up to 20g in weight destined for delivery outside of the Netherlands.

Bees are insects that, just like wasps and ants, belong to the Hymenoptera. In addition to the well-known honey bee and the bumblebee, there are many species of solitary bees, also known as wild bees, in the Netherlands. As the name suggests, the solitary bee does everything on its own: making nests, finding food and laying eggs. There are 331 species of bees that regularly reproduce in The Netherlands. The size of these bee species varies considerably: from just a few millimetres to approximately 1.5cm. Over half (55%) of the 331 species of wild bees are on the Red List of Dutch Bees (2018) of the Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality. The species appear on this list because they have disappeared and are (seriously) endangered, vulnerable or sensitive. There seems to be an increasing focus on the fate of the wild bee. A record number of people participated in the Netherlands’ National Bee Count 2021 during the weekend of 17 and 18 April. More bees were counted than in the previous year.