David and Amy Hooks - Columbia Falls, Montana

Honey Bees and Beekeepers

Honey Bee PollinatingHoney bees arrived in the United States almost four hundred years ago. They came with beekeepers who wanted honey bees to pollinate their crops in the new world. Although honey bees are not native to the U.S., they pollinate one third of all the food we eat making them immensely important.

To have enough forage for their bees, beekeepers in the U.S. place their bees on the land of agreeable landowners. Over the past several decades habitat and forage for honey bees has decreased due to urbanization and changes in agricultural practices. With this loss, honey bee populations have also declined.

As beekeepers we are often asked about the challenges and threats to honey bee populations. Fortunately there are things many of us can do to become part of the solution to sustain honey bees and native bees. Planting gardens, perennials, flowering trees and native plants is a great place to start. Support your local farmers, not only do they have the knowledge of growing food, their work keeps land in productive agricultural use.

Check out the links page for more information about pollinator friendly plants, native bees and honey bees.