Idaho Honey Bees, Foraging Beyond Potatoes

What is the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Idaho? Did you think of potatoes? I would have, until I accompanied Ben Sallmann, BIP Pacific Northwest Tech Transfer Team Field Specialist, on a sampling trip to Idaho and Montana. I was struck by what this state has to offer honey bees and their beekeepers. It is no wonder they call it the ‘gem state’. According to the Idaho State Department of Agriculture, 20% of the state’s gross product comes from the agricultural sector, the single largest contributor to its economy. This production, of course, includes that of their famous potatoes, which…

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The BIP Tech Team Program – We GO where the bees GO!

by Anne Marie Fauvel & Nathalie Steinhauer The Technical Transfer Team Program offers regular on-site hive inspections and sampling services for large commercial beekeepers and queen breeders throughout the U.S. The team consists of 5 distinct regions, staffed by 6 Honey Bee Health Field Specialists, providing services to over 100 commercial beekeepers, in 17 states, 10 of which are the nation’s top honey producing states. As our honey bees and beekeepers migrate to pollinate our food crops and ensure food security, so do our Field Specialists. They collectively drove over 100,000 miles inspecting close to 20,000 colonies last year alone! Can you imagine the logistical…

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