Cheerios pushes wildflower planting promotion to save the bees

Cheerios pushes to add pollinator habitat by planting wildflowers

MIAMI COUNTY (WKEF/WRGT)-- Anthony Rimkus thinks of himself as an old beekeeper. He's been tending the buzzing insects for 20 years and offering instructional classes on bees.

"One year I had one hive, two years later I had 135," Rimkus said.

Rimkus said he was happy to see General Mills pull its mascot, Buzz the bee off Cheerios cereal boxes.

"I thought, 'Well anything we can get to make people aware of the problems we are having is important because the honey bee is very important in the whole scheme of things," Rimkus said.

Rimkus hopes whether people got a pack of wildflower seeds or not they'll try to make a little area of their yard a habitat and food source for not just bees but all pollinators.

Learn more about attracting pollinators to your garden

"Even if they only have a little spot they can do and neighbors had a little spot all this adds up over (a) neighborhood. If they can just cut down on the chemicals they use," Rimkus said.

General Mills planned to give out 100 million wildflower seeds but ended up giving away 1.5 billion seeds.

"They really don't realize even a tiny little thing like a sweat bee or a mason bee, as small as they are they might be irritating in some way but sometimes not smashing some of these insects and just shooing them away, that might be something that pollinates your apple or cherry tree or peaches or grapes down the road," Rimkus said.

The Cheerios promotion is over but what can you do to help bees and butterflies and the other pollinators that keep our food supply going?

The National Wildlife Federation recommends planting native, pollen-producing flowers in your garden and avoiding pesticides altogether.

Here is a list of some of the invasive species you should not plant in Ohio.

Click here to learn more about bees in the Miami Valley.

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