Honey bees (Apis mellifera) are kept and managed by people worldwide for the honey they produce and for the pollination services they provide to flowering crops. Honey bees are threatened by viral and fungal diseases, parasites and the effects of agricultural intensification in diminishing their food resources and exposing them to pesticides. There is increasing evidence that combinations of these threats may be contributing to the losses of honey bee colonies seen around the world.
Beekeeping is a rewarding experience and there are many organisations worldwide that can provide support and advice on how to look after honey bees. In the UK for example, the Food and Agriculture Research Agency (
) provide comprehensive advice to established and new beekeepers.
There are also many beekeeper associations who provide a similar role and also a forum for like-minded individuals to meet:
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