Fewer Bee Losses

Fewer Bee Losses

Fewer Bee Losses. I’m Greg Martin with today’s Fruit Grower Report.

The problem with missing or dying bees may be correcting itself. According to the annual survey conducted by USDA, the Bee Informed Partnership and the Apiary Inspectors of America - total losses of managed honey bee colonies from all causes were 21.9-percent for the 2011-12 winter. Northwest Ag’s Dr. David Sparks has more:

SPARKS: The survey numbers represent a substantial drop compared to the previous five years. Total colony losses of 30-percent were found in the winter of 2010-11. Over the past five-years the biggest loss was 36-percent while the smallest had been 29-percent. The unusually warm winter may have contributed for the decline in colony losses. Researchers suggest a warm winter does mean less stress on bee colonies and may help them resist pathogens, parasites and other problems.

Thanks David. So far no direct scientific investigation of the weather connection has been conducted. Most cherry producers here in the northwest reported good bee activity this year. More than 55-hundred beekeepers who manage nearly 15-percent of the country’s estimated 2.49-million colonies responded to the survey. A complete analysis of the data will be published later this year.

That’s today’s Fruit Grower Report. I’m Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network. 

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