This winter’s extremely low temperatures are putting beekeepers hives at risk and if hives are at risk that impacts farmers throughout the year.
Hakija Pehlic is a beekeeper for Finster Honey Farms.
He's been doing it for twelve years here in America and he’s seen cold weather before as a beekeeper, but this year is a little different.
“Definitely this cold weather we will lose more bee's than usual," said Pehlic.
How many bees to be exact?
Roughly eighteen million bees will die this year.
That is twenty percent of the hives that Finster Honey Farms has.
Normally cold weather is bearable for bees who pack together in a cluster to form heat.
"The bees, when they generate the warmth. The fuel for that is food," said Pehlic.
And if they run out of that food they will die, which is really bad for farmers who say that they need bees for pollination.
"We need all the pollination we can get in such a short time, especially if we have a weather event, a lot of rain a lot of cold. We need more bees to do the job in a shorter period of time," said farmer George Joseph.
George says bees greatly impact the quality of the apples; the size, shape, and quantity.
He gets a thirty to forty percent better yield in his apple orchard when pollinized by bees.
The beekeeper that I talked to said that the loss of the bees isn’t catastrophic at this point, but that they will definitely be investing more money than usual for more bees.