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How To Help Our Honey Bees Survive

(NAPSI)-The food producer responsible for one of every three bites the average American eats is in crisis, and more than half of Americans are not even aware there is a problem. Over the past several winters, more than 25 percent of the honey bee population in the United States has vanished. Everything from poor nutrition to invasive mites to Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD)-a phenomenon where bees from a colony abruptly disappear, leaving no trace-is affecting the bee population. This disappearance has scientists stumped and has the potential to affect many of our favorite fruits, berries, vegetables, nuts and seeds.

Bee Facts

A world without the hardworking honey bee is a world without tasty pears, luscious raspberries and crunchy nuts.

Keith's Bee Advice

In fact, honey bees are responsible for the pollination of more than 100 crops, providing 80 percent of the country's pollination services. Without the help of honey bees in crop pollination, an estimated $15 billion in U.S. agriculture is in jeopardy affecting both U.S. and international food supplies.

In fact, honey bees are responsible for the pollination of more than 100 crops, providing 80 percent of the country's pollination services. Without the help of honey bees in crop pollination, an estimated $15 billion in U.S. agriculture is in jeopardy affecting both U.S. and international food supplies.

The plight of the honey bee affects us all. Here are some small steps you can take to help save these petite pollinators:

What Ails Our Bees

Click here to read the above movie review in the New York Times

Five simple tips to create a bee-friendly garden

1. Choose garden plants and flowers that are pollinator-friendly. This includes most plants in the rose, mint, pea and aster families.

2. Select flowers that have a single layer of flower petals, such as a classic daisy.

3. Add non-native plants to your garden to create diversity. Plus, many non-native varieties are excellent, attractive and vigorous plants that provide food for bees and pollinators.

4. Look for flowers that provide food all season. Plant some early flowering plants, along with mid-and late-season flowers. Late-season flowers like goldenrod and aster are especially important.

5. Provide a good environment. Limit, or better still, eliminate the use of pesticides, particularly on attractive plants with open flowers.

The latest buzz is that we need bees to pollinate more than 100 crops.

Courtesy North American Press Syndicate

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An amateur beekeeper, entomologist and conservationist, Buchmann (The Forgotten Pollinators) surveys humankind's relationship with the oft underappreciated bee from prehistoric times to the present, emphasizing the necessity of protecting their habitats from environmental degradation. He discusses bees and honey in myth and legend; observes honey hunters in Malaysia, Nepal and Australia who use ancient methods to collect wild honey; and provides histories of beekeeping and the honey trade and an account of the activities of beekeepers. The meat of the book includes chapters on honey making, the mechanics of pollination, and bee behavior. Buchmann includes a catalogue of honey varieties, recipes, a chapter on mead, a survey of honey's medicinal uses and several appendixes, including a glossary, an inventory of bee species and a list of honey and beekeeping resources and supplies. This is a lot of material for a volume this size, and Buchmann can't cover it all in depth, but he does present a highly entertaining and informative introduction to the world of the bee, as well as an enlightening look at "the enduring bond between bees and mankind."

 

Updated January 1, 2017

© 2010-2017 Albert W. Needham