Colony Placement and Honey Production: National Management Survey 2011-2012

Many bees are used for pollination of crops or happen to be kept near large agricultural areas and often feed from certain crops. There is some speculation that certain crops and therefore nutrition can have an effect on colony health. For 2011-2012, we found that hives that were around cotton had fewer losses than hives that were not around cotton. But, since cotton is exclusively grown in the South, the regional difference can be accounted for the difference since there were more losses in the north overall. The amount of hives that beekeepers who had their colonies near cotton were consistent with the amount of loss suffered in the South overall.

Honey Production

Honey production happens year round, but for the year 2011-2012 it seems that honey production in the spring is a better indicator of survivorship. Beekeepers who had below average or no honey crops in the spring lost significantly more colonies that those who had normal or above average honey production. These trends did not hold true for the other seasons.



This information is for educational purposes only. References to commercial products or trade names do not imply endorsement by the Bee Informed Partnership or its members. The results presented here are the summary of the population who responded. The sample may not be representative of the beekeeping population at large. These results simply highlight differences in the sample population. The results cannot be considered conclusive, causative, protective, or attest to product efficacy or lack of efficacy


Management Survey 2011 – 2012

How average losses were calculated and presented  |  Watch a vlog here

Appendix Items

Download the complete reports in the list below

Colony Placement and Honey Production

All survey reports listed here: Bee Informed National Management Survey 2011-2012 

4 thoughts on “Colony Placement and Honey Production: National Management Survey 2011-2012

  1. i’m confused about the honey production info you have above…the text says “Beekeepers who had below average or no honey crops in the spring lost significantly fewer colonies that those who had normal or above average honey production.” but the video says “…lower than average honey crops in the spring/or no honey crop in spring at all reported having much higher losses.”

    please let me know. thx.

    • Hi Kim,

      Thanks for spotting that. The video is correct, beekeepers who had lower than average honey crops had higher losses. We will fix the text!

  2. My son is doing a science fair project on the extinction/ decline of bees and what that means to human society. Is there a site where we can get graphs of data that show what is happening to the bees over time? Also, Einstein predicted in four years humans would follow extinction if the bees became extinct. Any support out there for this?

  3. What is average?
    What is the average per deep – i.e., average for a 1 deep colony, 2 deep colony, etc. meaning brood chambers?
    Your survey asked me if I had above average, below average, none, or average and I had no basis for what average might be. So, I answered average. Since I had zero losses, I could have been above average but not knowing what “average” means numerically in pounds, had no clue.
    Thank you

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