Aiding bee recovery
A new appropriations bill that includes $1.5 million to study the collapse of bee colonies is headed to the full Senate for a vote in coming days, New YorkÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s federal senators said today.
Colony Collapse Disorder is a new and unexplained condition that has caused a serious reduction in the number of bees for commercial pollination around the nation and in New York state.
Senators Charles Schumer and Hillary Clinton said in a statement today that New YorkÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s honey production dropped to 3.84 million pounds last year from 4.38 million pounds in 2005, a decrease of about 12 percent.
More than 100,000 bee colonies have disappeared around the nation, Schumer and Clinton said. In New York, some studies have shown that all major beekeepers have lost more than 30 percent of their colonies, with some local farmers reported losses as high as 80 percent.
The money included in the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies FY08 Appropriations Bill regarding bees will go toward a pollinator recovery project.
The nationÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s beekeepers Ã¢â‚¬â€ and their bees Ã¢â‚¬â€ provide pollination services for more than 90 different food, seed and fiber crops, Schumer and Clinton and stated. Among the crops depending on or benefitting from honey bee pollination are almonds, apples, avocados, blueberries, cantaloupes, carrots, cherries, cotton, cranberries, plums, pumpkins, soybeans, squash and watermelons.