Honey bee census

Roughly a third of honey bees counted in a recent census died last winter. The Apiary Inspectors of America and the United States Department of Agriculture, in their fourth such census, found this was an increase over last year’s losses of 29 percent. The beekeepers, whose operations represented nearly a quarter of U.S. bee colonies, said starvation, poor weather and weak colonies were to blame for the fatalities. Of the 28 percent of beekeepers who reported signs of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD)—such as colonies disappearing without the presence of dead bees—they lost 44 percent of their colonies. Beekeepers who didn’t report signs of CCD lost 25 percent of their colonies. The cause of CCD is still unknown.