The bees are back in town: record number of bees counted in Netherlands

This weekend, 10,000 Dutchies stood outside for 30 minutes and counted the number of bees they saw. The result? A record number of buzzy boys were out and about. 

The counting was part of the National Bee Census (yes this is a thing), an initiative started by the Naturalis museum and Natuur & Milieu. This year marks the fourth year that the census was held — and the Netherlands’ bee population has experienced a baby bee boom.

Increase from last year

Last year, roughly 10,000 people also took part in the census. The difference this time around is seen in the number of bees counted.

This time last year, 130,000 bees were counted. This year, that number stands at over 190,000 — and the counting hasn’t even stopped yet! Participants can submit their results until 8PM tonight.

The honey bee was the most counted bee with almost 50,000 sightings. Following behind are the red mason bee and the earth bumblebee (both spotted about 12,000 times.)

Becoming more bee conscious

Bee expert Koos Biesmeijer of Naturalis, tells ANP that this increase may be partly explained by a growing consciousness towards bees in the Netherlands.

READ MORE| Bee-ing happy: how the Netherlands keeps its buzz

“Not only have municipalities improved their mowing policy, many garden owners have also paid more attention to a natural and bee-rich garden.”

It looks like we’re starting off this week with some good news folks! What are your thoughts on these findings? Tell us in the comments below! 

Feature Image: Mandy Henry/Unsplash

Sarah O'Leary 🇮🇪
Sarah O'Leary 🇮🇪
Sarah originally arrived in the Netherlands due to an inability to make her own decisions — she was simply told by her mother to choose the Netherlands for Erasmus. Life here has been challenging (have you heard the language) but brilliant for Sarah, and she loves to write about it. When Sarah is not acting as a safety threat to herself and others (cycling), you can find her sitting in a corner of Leiden with a coffee, trying to sound witty.


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