Lessons from the Bees, Butterflies, Insects & Birds. – By Noor Rahim
The Meteorological Department forecast indicated that the weather was going to be a gorgeous one. So I ventured out with much anticipation and elation; only to be greeted with a blast of extremely hot air. So, my first reaction, was to beat a hasty retreat into the cool environment of my Home.
Arming myself with a large thirst quenching cooled drink I decided to sit on the porch in my favourite armchair; surrounded by the cool shade of the trees that abound my Home.
Seated did I see the periodic ruffling of the leaves and swaying of the branches on the many trees that surrounds. This heralds the onset of a gentle breeze and more so the cooling of the hot air in its aftermath. The pleasure of the cooled breeze extends so much of relief. Very soon the beads of sweat becomes a thing of the past.
The scenario is a reminiscent of the past when I was lulled into a deep snooze. But on this occasion my wandering mind gets attracted to a bunch of bees, insects, ants and a few butterflies that appear to hover around the abundance of flowers that have appeared, due to the conducive weather.
One cannot but wonder in amazement at their very busy activities, with concerted glee. They seem to be too busy in collecting the nectar from the flowers and in doing so they do not appear to “clash” with each other; giving the impression that there is a mutual understanding amongst them. They keep flipping from flower to flower collecting very meticulously their needs; and flying off to their own “communal homes” (hives) so to say. The most wonderful thing to watch is that they do not in any way damage or destroy any of the flowers they “visit” or depart from. But they subscribe/contribute so much to Mother Nature in that they not only gather the nectar of the flowers; they also get dusted with the “pollen” of the flower on their bodies. This pollen they deposit in other flowers they visit and thus contribute to the evolution of the seed through pollination. Thus the nucleus for a new plant is born.
I also espied on a long and singular trail of red ants winding their way through to their nests. Undoubtedly they too have gathered their food and are returning “Home”. Yet another group of them follow each other in single file/column; carrying and supporting leaves and other material that would be used in their nests. “Mutual Cooperation” or “Team Effort” among them is what comes into mind; or is it unequivocal “Unity”. How disciplined they move and how united they look in their trek back “Home”. The same as the Bees that fly back to their Bee Hives and deposit the nectar for the common use of all. Such is their unity in the insect world. Isn’t it amazing when you think about it?
My mind strays back to my school days whence I studied “Botany” as a subject. The Teacher did tell us the importance of pollination for the future growth of vegetation and trees; that are so required and so necessary for Human Kind. But pollination is the first step for procreation.
There is a need for the result of the pollination to be scattered into a wider area. This takes place through the wind that blows and carries the seeds (the creation of pollination) far and wide; and in addition through birds and other small animals that imbibe the seeds and deposits them when they roam around. The rest of the growth is in the hands of Mother Nature and in some instances in the hands of the avid Gardner; who nurtures the seeds and watch the growth. The farmer who sows them to eke out a living.
During this one hot afternoon I sure have reaped that most important lesson that was taught in a very practical way indeed. In other words I have learned that the teeny weenie insect has contributed and will continue to contribute to the requirements of Mother Nature. Even though they remain in the background; and remain the unsung heroes of plant propagation and human sustenance.
As the evening draws near and darkness keeps creeping in, I can hear some buzzing noise. Suddenly I feel a little pinch followed by the yearning to scratch at the spot. Yes those pesky mosquitoes have come out of their hibernation. They suck your blood, have their fill and return to their places of hiding in the shrubs and dense foliage. There is nothing good in them; other than to spread diseases; as they are renowned for. One can only assume that they are selfish in their wants and destructive to their donors. So this is the flip side of the coin in the insect world.
I run back into the house to escape the wrath of these pesky varmints. Armed with a mug of tea I sit comfortably in the sofa in my living room. It is not long, before my mind strays into the comparison mode. That of comparing human beings with the insects in the conservation of Mother Nature.
Very soon do I deduce that the insects assist Mother Nature and we, as human beings in our infinite wisdom and advanced technological expertise appear to be destroying Mother Nature and are very apt in the old saying “Cry Wolf”; and pay lip service to the conservation of Nature. It is almost as good as the old saying – “Closing the barn door after the horse has bolted”.
How much of the decisions on the destruction of Mother Nature is due to Commercial Reasons is what races through the mind.
We wouldn’t hesitate to cut down a tree; to plant a concrete column. Destroy a green jungle to create a concrete jungle. Build in a wildlife habitat and kill the animal when he returns to its’ home – calling it a threat to humans. Destroy the very layer of atmosphere (the ozone layer to be more precise) that wards off the injurious ultra violet rays of the sun; and wonder why the ecological changes are occurring throughout the hemispheres. Spray pesticides and weedicides that kill those teeny weenie insects that assist Mother Nature in propagation of plants. Thus destroying the very vehicles of propagation of Natures’ gift of Plant Life and Ecological expansion. But all these destructions are committed for and in the name of Commercial Ventures; and the so called anticipated Economic Benefits to a Nation.
The list goes on and on. What price this greed and want, created by Human Kind. What price will befall on the future generation and generations to come. Only time will tell. What comes foremost to my mind is an old saying of the 1940’s – “Humankind will kill Nature and Nature will kill Humankind”. Hence I must ask respectfully of the Readership – Has this phase arrived? and if so what are we doing to stop this fast deteriorating situation of ecological and climatic changes.
Are we in reality behaving like the pesky mosquito; who fulfill their own selfish wants and leave a destructive impregnation on their unsuspecting donors.
It is a known fact that we lead a fast paced life in this modern world. In our spare time we do get engrossed in the freely available electronic “gizmos”. But I implore you to sit down one evening and watch the display of Nature at its best by observing the routines of the assumed insignificant Bees, Butterflies, Insects and Birds. It’s one great Natures lesson on ecology and procreation; free to the watchers for the asking. Evaluate their actions or else remain like the mosquito – selfish, greedy and detrimental to the donor.
Thus I end my article and pray that you will take a few moments of your precious time to imbibe on my experience or make your own educated observations; and help in the conservation, if not the resuscitation, of our God Given ecological gift.
Always keep in mind the good old saying of the 1940’s, which is worth repeating – “Humankind will kill Nature and Nature will kill Humankind”
23rd July 2015.