Be an Urban Beekeeper
“Some of the best bees I ever deal with are urban bees,” said Dr. Delaplane. “We in Atlanta have not one but two thriving beekeeping associations in the metro area. Honeybees do great in an urban environment. A lot of it is for reasons we’ve already talked about for reasons that in an urban setting, there tends to be a lot more floral diversity than there is in an agricultural setting. It makes sense if you think about it. You have a lot of residential yards,” he said. Dr. Huang said, “Every state would have a state beekeeping association. Michigan has a Web site, Michiganbees.org. There’s also regional ones, like Eastern Apicultural society, and there’s also Midwestern organization called Heartland Bees. There’s also Western Bee Association. In each state there are county-based [organizations], like in Detroit there are SIMBA, Southeastern bee association, and there are about 400 members. In Michigan, we have probably 1000 beekeepers.”
“I think another way you can support local bee populations is to buy local honey,” said Dr. Delaplane. “Number one,” he said, “it’s consistent with the whole idea of buying local. In the case of honeybees, you’re going to be benefiting local bees from local beekeepers. You’re going to be enjoying honey that’s produced in your neighborhood with your unique floral mix. It’s just a no-brainer. Buy honey from a local beekeeper.”
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