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article imageWill The Honeybees Return?

By Debra Myers     Jun 17, 2007 in Environment
That's the question local area farmers are asking these days. Since so many crops were lost last year due to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of honeybees, some are anxiously awaiting to see what the next month or two brings.
Millerton, PA -- Having been in the honeybee business for over 30 years, Bill Draper says that his own honey business declined nearly 60 percent due his bees dying. However, he doesn't agree with the national consensus that it was due to Colony Collapse Disorder.
“It seems nature has a way after a very bad year to rebuild by giving a good year the next year,” says Draper.
Draper feels that it's more likely that our weather was to blame, which initially caused the reduction of the honeybee population. He explains: "Queen bees mate while in flight and need ideal mating conditions. If the weather's bad, the queens don't have high quality mates."
To be on the safe side though, he made a trip to Texas in January to buy more honeybees to rebuild his supply.
Another area farmer that raises pumpkins in the Town of Southport (part of Elmira, NY), Dan Hurley can't say as to why there were fewer bees last year, and so far this year he hasn't seen too many either. He said, “It’s a little too early for us to tell yet if there's any wild population that are going to come. for our crops to be pollinated, it will be, probably mid July where we will need the bees so I’m a little concerned to whether we're going to have any back or not,”
Most farmers agree, that because last Summer was a wetter one than usual, that played a part in the shortage of crops, and it wasn't only because of the reduction of the honeybee populations.
I honestly hope that we do see the population return, not only because of those crops that need to be pollinated, but also I'm in hopes that maybe Nature is re-balancing herself back out a bit.
More about Honey bees, Farmers, Pollination
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