(CTV) Scandia Honey imports 20,000 bee packages each season, which are used to start new hives or replace ones that die over winter. This year, because of shipping restrictions from the Covid-19 pandemic, they got none. The company says that will put a strain on Canada’s honey supply. An even bigger problem for Canada might be the effect a drop in the number of beehives will have on agriculture: bee hives are used by seed companies to pollinate their crops to produce the seed stock for next year.
(The Economist $) This year Covid-19 has been a bigger headache than pesticides for the country’s 250,000 beekeepers. Many of them are itinerant, moving their colonies around the country on lorries in search of pollen and nectar. For many days, restrictions imposed to curb the epidemic made this difficult. It is too late to catch the early blooms of spring. Margins are thin at the best of times. Some may be able to supplement their income by pollinating farmers’ crops. “Beekeepers have to rely on heaven to eat.”
(The Islander) The Kangaroo Island Beekeepers Group wants to track down all honey producers operating on the Island so that bushfire funds can be fairly distributed. “As a collective we need to decide how we can use this money to benefit the KI beekeeping community. However, we do not have a complete contact list for the Island’s beekeepers.”
(The Bull & Bear) Run by a combination of beekeepers, engineers and computer programmers, Nectar was founded in 2016. The technology that Nectar has developed is designed to deliver real-time, accurate data about the bees, the hive itself, and outside conditions as well. Their solutions consist of the Beecon, the BeeHub, and the BeeTag.
(ABC) After months of prolonged drought, followed by devastating bushfires, vital rain has rescued an Australian farmer’s honey production after a barren 2019. But just like the wine industry is dealing with grapes affected by smoke taint, there is expected to be a flavor impact on honey as well.
(Science) They’re the undertakers of the honey bee world: a class of workers that scours the hive for dead comrades, finding them in the dark in as little as 30 minutes, despite the fact that the deceased haven’t begun to give off the typical odors of decay. A new study may reveal how they do it.
(Santa Barbara Independent) Flonicamid is currently under review by the EPA for residential use, but California Attorney General Xavier Becerra asserts the insecticide may be toxic to bees and other critical pollinators. A new study on adult honey bees found flonicamid to be fatal for bees, Becerra stated in a letter to the EPA. A copy of the comment letter can be found here.
(KBOE) Iowa is one step closer to having the honey bee as the official state insect. The state Senate endorsed the bill, which now heads to the House. Iowa is one of only two states without an officially recognized state insect.