For those of you who might be headed out to the Davis area (or perhaps live there already), you may want to find time to buzz on over to the UC Davis Honey Bee Haven. Part of the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility, the half-acre site was developed with help from a grant from Häagen-Dazs. The garden is part of a research project to help apiarists (a.k.a. beekeepers and bee scientists) study honeybees and other pollinators.
Part of the garden’s focus is to better understand what types of horticulture attract pollinators, which play a large part in California agriculture (honeybees pollinate about a third of the American diet). In particular, scientists study colony collapse disorder, which is attributed to bees suddenly up and leaving their hive, abandoning the younger generation of brood, which end up dying without their older generation’s care.
You can visit the bee garden to learn more about how to help California’s bees and, even better, learn more about the sweet-tasting honey they make. Visit http://beebiology.ucdavis.edu for more info.