The U.S. Department of Agriculture has announced that it will survey the abundance of honeybees on an ongoing basis. This is the first time bees will be monitored as other commodities, such as livestock numbers and crop prices. The quarterly and annual surveys will track colony losses and stressors associated with colony collapse disorder, such as parasites and insecticides.
The Department also announced the funding of $4 million in technical and financial assistance to improve bee habitat in the Midwest.
“The future of America’s food supply depends on honey bees, and this effort is one way USDA is helping improve the health of honey bee populations,” said Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. “Significant progress has been made in understanding the factors that are associated with Colony Collapse Disorder and the overall health of honey bees, and this funding will allow us to work with farmers and ranchers to apply that knowledge over a broader area.”
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