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Cheerios' Bring the Bees Back Campaign May Actually Do More Harm Than Good

Mar 23, 2017 05:31 AM EDT
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Gigantic swarm of bees forces people to duck for cover

Just recently, Cheerios removed Buzz the Bee form their cereal boxes to promote their Bring Back the Bees Campaign. Cheerios' campaign is quite straightforward. They plan to send out 100 million wildflower seeds and urge people across the nation to plant them.

However, some experts warn that the company's wildflower initiative might actually do more harm in some areas. According a report from My Central Oregon, some of the wildflower seeds being distributed by Cheerios could grow into a highly invasive plant that is not helpful to native bee species.

Read Also: Where Is Buzz the Bee? Why Cheerios' Beloved Bee Mascot Dissappeared From the Cereal Box 

"No plant is inherently 'bad', but many species can and has caused a great deal of damage when they are introduced into locations outside of their native range," ecologist Kathryn Turner told Life Hacker.

"Invasive species can out-compete the natives they encounter, they can take up all the space and use up all the resources, they can spread disease, and cause other physical changes to their new homes, all of which can have detrimental effects on native species, and on humans," she added.

Other experts also expressed their concern about the potential of the some of the wildflower seeds distributed by Cheerios could grow into a highly invasive weed, choking local native species of plant. Experts also warn that the seed mix that is good for one area can be destructive in another.

Cheerios seed mix is said to contain a bad combination of different wildflower seeds. Eric Mader, a native plant specialist with the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, revealed that the mix seed packets of Cheerios contain both aggressive annuals and perennials, which do not play well together.

"When you mix them together in a packet, you are not going to end up with a cohesive plant community," Mader said in a report from Star Tribune. "Some might thrive, some might fail."

Read Also: Conservation Win: Rusty Patched Bumblebees Now Officially Listed as Endangered

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