In their 1996 book, The Forgotten Pollinators, Buchmann and Nabhan estimated that animal pollinators are needed for the reproduction of 90% of flowering plants and one third of human food crops. Each of us depends on these industrious pollinators in a practical way to provide us with the wide range of foods we eat. In addition, pollinators are part of the intricate web that supports the biological diversity in natural ecosystems that helps sustain our quality of life.
Abundant and healthy populations of pollinators can improve fruit set and quality, and increase fruit size. In farming situations this increases production per acre. In the wild, biodiversity increases and wildlife food sources increase. Alfalfa, apples, pears, and apricots are some of the crops raised in the Nevada–Utah Mountains Semidesert that rely on honey bees and native bees for pollination. Domestic honey bees pollinate approximately $10 billion worth of crops in the U.S. each year.