Cold stings honeybee colonies

Last winter’s cold killed more than half of West Virginia’s honeybee colonies, more than a third  in both North Carolina and Maryland,
and almost a third in Virginia.

“We normally have pretty mild winters, but we had a good cold snap at the end, and a lot of beekeepers didn’t get a chance to go check on their bees,” said Leon Knight, a Suffolk Virginia beekeeper.

As a result, according to Knight, there wasn’t enough sugar in their hives for bees to make it through the nasty weather between January and April.

Combined with other factors, the cold caused the demise of almost a third of Virginia’s honeybee colonies between October and April, according to the eighth annual “Bee Informed” national survey.

Insect-pollinated plants the direct or indirect source of about 1/3 of our human diet

“The stakes are high,” says this article in the Suffolk News Herald.

“These pollinators are essential for the development of our crops and crucial to the state’s $52-billion agriculture industry. In fact, insect-pollinated plants are the direct or indirect source of approximately one-third of our human diet,” stated Keith Tignor, Virginia state apiarist at the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, in a news release.

Kenny points out that colony losses last winter were also higher than the national average in surrounding states: 35 percent in North Carolina, 37 percent in Maryland and 52 percent in West Virginia, for instance.

Every colony lost costs a beekeeper about $1,500, according to Kenny. But the cost to the nation is much higher.

I keep warning you: Make sure that you have a food supply.

Thanks to Caroline in West Virginia for this link

6 thoughts on “Cold stings honeybee colonies

  1. Didn’t Einstein say “When bees disappear humanity follow in a few short years”.Because all crops require pollination except hemp.Hemp only require wind and they thrive.Hemp paper could be had in a year instead of wood and bamboo needing up to ten years.Hemp oil is superior to all other vegetable oil.Hemp could be cotton replacement as far as clothing is concerned.Hemp seeds are only complete protein in plant kingdom.If bees are dying out, time to legalize hemp if humanity are to survive or thrive.By the way hemp is not marijuana although they are cousins.

  2. Hemp was a required crop in the early days of this country – used for navy ship ropes and rigging. Only recently was it outlawed.

  3. What would be the press statements if farmers left their animals out in unusual cold all winter with too little feed? I’m sure it would not be favourable to the farmer – why do beekeepers get a free pass?

    Last time I looked most of the western diet was composed of cereals (wind pollinated), vegetables (in most cases only the seed production stage requires insect pollination for some of them – not the farming producing the food we eat), grapes for fruit or wine (wind pollinated). Even animals for meat in most of the world eat from grass pastures (wind pollinated). Insect pollination services are also from a very big range of species of both flies and bees. Honeybees should be kept for their honey production.

  4. Einstein never said “When bees disappear humanity follow in a few short years”
    It was fist said on a leaflet in the 90s when the French beekeepers were protesting Sugar prices

  5. Honey bees are not indigenous to the Americas. They were first brought by European settlers. Wish people would stop when they’re ahead, but no, then someone had to import a bee from Africa…

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