Winter Honey Bee Colony Losses Increase
Research: Bee Informed Partnership
For the last 12 years, the Bee Informed Partnership has surveyed managed honey bee colony losses in the U.S. They just released their preliminary report for 2017-18:
According to the survey, almost 31% of managed colonies were lost during the 2017-18 winter. Compare that to 21% loss for the 2016-17 winter.
Of course, losses vary greatly between backyard beekeepers (46% loss), those who own 50 to 500 colonies (38% loss), and commercial beekeepers who own 500-plus colonies (26% loss).
Bee Informed surveyed 4,794 beekeepers, which represents about 6.6% of the estimated 2.67 million managed honey-producing colonies in the U.S.