Honey bees are a popular topic of conversation these days all around the world. Here at home, the latest Statistics Canada data show that honey bee populations are on the rise. However, they face several challenges every day that can impact their health. These include:
1. Inadequate nutrition.
Without enough pollen and nectar collected during the summer months, a colony of honey bees won’t have enough food to survive the winter. Did you know that canola is one of the best sources of nutrition for honey bees?
Even something as tiny as a bee can get a bug. The varroa mite, for example, can infest honey bee hives and weaken them, lowering their chances of producing strong baby bees.
In many parts of Canada, the long winter can be a harsh stress on a hive. In addition, unseasonable weather in the spring and summer months can also affect crops, reducing the food supply for honey bees.
There are more than 18 viruses that can harm honey bees, as well as dangerous bacteria like European and American Foulbrood.
They’re safer than they’ve ever been before, but they can affect honey bee colony health if used improperly in the hive to control mites and disease or on the land to protect growing crops.
You can help honey bees thrive by ordering and planting a free seed kit full of flowers that are nutritious to honey bees. You can order a free Buzzing Gardens seed kit and find out more information about the factors affecting honey bee health in Canada at www.beesmatter.ca.