Healthy Honeybee Population

Healthy Honeybee Population

by Kelly Choate on June 22, 2012

There’s a healthy buzz in Muskingum County, which is good news for fruit farmers.

Orlen Bates with O’s Fruit Farm said honeybees from his six hives help pollinate his plants.  He said the importance of bees to our food source is often overlooked.

"Just about every vegetable and fruit that we eat as human beings, we rely on pollination," said Bates.  "Honeybees are one of the main factors.  There are other pollinators, but honeybees have done the job for years."

Bates said the honeybee business is relatively simple to get started.  He contacted the Ohio State University Extension Office when he realized there was a problem with the soil at his farm.

"I just went out and bought my equipment myself," said Bates.  "I needed it for my fruit trees."

Bates makes house calls to capture honeybee swarms.  He also has a demo hive on site to teach children about honeybees.