(WTNH)–James O’Neil, owner of Honeybound Apiary in Stratford is relatively new to the apiary business. He sells honey, bees, and does bee removal services. It helps provide extra income, but lately it hasn’t been providing as much as it used to.
“So I think Connecticut had a sixty something percent loss, and every year it goes up. So they’re running out of food. Now granted I’ve only been doing it for 6 years. I would get a surplus of honey in the Fall for the first two years. After that, it’s hard in Connecticut to pull Fall honey” mentioned O’Neil.
That declining population is due to a variety of factors primarily including a parasitic mite that invades hives and and spreads diseases. There are two other things causing the bee population to tank, the first of which is the weather.
Dr. Kimberly Stoner, Associate Scientist, Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station notes, “It suddenly gets warm for a while in the winter and suddenly gets cold again. The bees become active, come out of the hive, try to forage and there’s nothing in bloom.”
This in turn can kill bees off quickly. And we need bees to help pollinate lots of the food we eat, in turn causing big issues for the agriculture industry.
Additionally, increased use of pesticides cause natural broad leaf flowers to die off, making it harder for bees to do their job.
Unless we stop using pesticides, the population of bees may very well slowly decline over the upcoming years.
You can help keep bees alive by checking out more from the Pollinator Pathway organization. They work very hard to connect natural areas with native plants that are attractive to bees! CLICK HERE for more information.
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