Advisors Collaborate on Beekeeping Project
The recent media focus on the impact of colony collapse disorder to
the nation’s beekeeping industry increased the public’s awareness
of the importance of honey bees to agriculture. Shannon Mueller
and Richard Molinar began keeping bees to gain hands-on experience and to have access to colonies for educational activities with their clientele. Shannon serves as a resource on bees and pollination in Fresno County. Richard is exploring beekeeping as an opportunity for family farms/specialty crops clientele. Together, they manage five colonies and give presentations throughout the year covering basic beekeeping and the importance of bees and pollination in agriculture. Because they maintain their own colonies, they are able to bring bees in an observation hive to clientele meetings. Adults and children are fascinated watching the various activities of the inhabitants of the hive. This activity has resulted in significant improvement in interactions with local beekeepers and has potential as a new opportunity for small farmers, given the shortage of bees for pollination in California.