Mark has been busy in the bee yard. Bee losses were high this year with some beekeepers reporting staggering losses of 80%. This is not only devastating for the beekeepers but also for the pollinators as a whole. Thankfully we had losses below 30% which is great for us but we still concerning about the losses overall.
There are many thoughts on the causes of these losses. Is it the weather? Is it the systemic effect from foraging chemically treated plants? Perhaps the pressure created by pests like the Varroa mite?
It may be some time before the actual cause of the decline is agreed upon so in the meantime please help the pollinators that are alive by attracting them to your property.
Here’s 3 ways you can help the pollinators…
Plant Native Flowers.
Native flowers are flowers that naturally grow in our climate and region. Pollinators and native plants are adapted to each, so bees are naturally attracted to them. Native plants include: milkweed, echinacea, rudbeckia, monarda, to name a few. Leave flowering weeds for them to forage, and scatter wildflower mixes in unmowed areas or your garden.
Instead of one or two plants, plant a whole bunch of one kind of plant. Large groupings of flowers makes it easy for the bees to find them.
Provide a water source. Pollinators need to drink. A bird bath with stones or pieces of wood for them to land provides an ideal drinking spot.
Are you interested in learning more about these fascinating creatures? If so, why not sign up for learn to bee keep…the first session is all about the equipment and observing the hive. You can sign up here. We will also be offering one time bee keeping experiences throughout the summer where you’ll suit up and get a guided tour inside a hive.