Mark Metcalf

The buzz on urban beekeeping

By - May 12th, 2011 04:00 am

All photos by Nicole Braunsdorf.

Last year, Milwaukee joined a national network of cities that permit trained residents to keep honeybees within city limits, in response to growing demand for sustainable food sources and widespread colony collapse among bee populations. Far from the aggressive picnic pests we’ve come to know (that thing buzzing around your soda can is actually a wasp, not a bee), honeybees play a vital role in the ecosystem as producers of honey and pollinators of crops.

Charlie Koenen checks a beehive

Honeybees — Wisconsin’s official state insect — are responsible for pollinating more than $15 billion worth of fruit and vegetables grown in the U.S. alone. Large commercial crops of almonds, apples, pears, peaches, soybeans, cranberries and oranges depend entirely on pollination by honeybees. In Wisconsin, honeybees also pollinate alfalfa crops, a staple in the diet of our state’s dairy cows.

But there’s more! Over 900 medicines and cures can be found in the honey, wax and propolis that bees produce — even a cure for the H1N1 virus. But changes in the agriculture production and the spread of disease have put the apian population in peril, with numbers declining rapidly all over the world.

Today, local bee expert and co-founder of Beepods, Charlie Koenen, is here to tell you everything there is to know about these fascinating insects, and how proper urban beekeeping can stem the rise in colony collapse — and maybe even save the world.

Listen now:

(Windows Media)


Learn more about Beepods and urban beekeeping here.

Subscribe to these podcasts through iTunes here.

0 thoughts on “PODCAST: The buzz on urban beekeeping”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Great info. Enjoyed reading.

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