The bees of the Capital Region need our help! The population of colonies in New York state is fast on the decline, and you can make a difference.
Over half of the colonies in New York failed this past year, continuing the trend of declining bee populations. However, there are simple adjustments people can make to their backyards to help them out.
Emma Mullen, a honeybee expert at Cornell University, told the Times Union, “New York beekeepers are losing more than what the rest of the U.S. is experiencing, so this is very concerning.” It is important that we take action as bees are critical to the food supply. Some reasons as to why the bee population continues to drop include viruses, parasites, pesticides, habitat loss and climate change.
Fortunately, there are several ways to make your backyard garden more welcoming to bees. Here’s how:
- Plant a diverse range of flowers that will bloom at different times throughout the season
- Avoid using pesticides, especially neonicotinoids
- Choose plants with small, open-faced flowers
- Leave dead logs or brush nearby where bees can nest
Take these tips into consideration when it’s time to plan your gardeen and know you are doing your part to help our environment.