Missouri has more than 400 species of bees, and they are responsible for pollinating our cucumbers, pumpkins, fruit trees, berries, tomatoes, soybeans and corn. One estimate suggests that bees increase the annual value of U.S. crop production by $15 billion. Bees are necessary.
In light of recent declines of honeybee populations worldwide, representatives of Missouri’s agricultural producers and beekeepers have developed a set of standard practices that will encourage cooperation and communication among growers, pesticide applicators and beekeepers
The Missouri Pollinator Conservancy Program seeks to minimize economic losses for both farmers and beekeepers by adequately managing row-crop pests while minimizing the effect of pesticides on honeybee colonies.
This voluntary program encourages cooperation and communication between beekeepers and farmers:
• Careful consideration of the placement of bee colonies in agricultural areas
• Conscientious application of necessary insecticides
• Registration of pesticide applicators and beehive owners on a national watch site
COMMUNICATION IS OUR BEST BET
Consultant, farmers, applicators and beekeepers are encouraged to maintain a high level of communication. All parties should be aware of the number and locations of beehives on and adjacent to farm property. Each needs to communicate changes in cropping systems, spray applications or beehive locations.
The DriftWatch Specialty Crop Site Registry provides a platform for maintaining open communication and a record of beehive locations.