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More bees lost in summer than winter

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Twenty-three percent of managed honeybee colonies were lost during the past winter, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That’s slightly down from the last couple of years.

However, summer losses (27 percent) exceeded winter losses

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Take the guesswork out of thinning

A predictive model enables growers to be in a planning mode rather than a crisis mode at chemical thinning time.

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Precision pollination

Mechanical pollination could end use of chemicals or hand labor for thinning.

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Bees as flying doctors

Honeybees deliver brown rot control to sweet cherry orchards.

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Breeding better bees

WSU researchers hope to make honeybees more resilient by introducing genetic diversity.

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Research tackles decay issue

A new project will focus on controlling decay and finding pollinizers that are not disease hosts.

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Selenium is toxic to bees

Entomologists from the University of California, Riverside, have found that selenium can cause delays in development and mortality in honeybees.

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Best practices for pollination

Six practices to help ensure successful pollination.

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Bees are driving pesticide decisions

The desire to protect bees is becoming institutionalized.

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Mechanical thinning can damage spurs, leaf tissue and flowers

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Mechanical thinning looks like a ­promising technique for reducing the amount of labor-intensive hand thinning required in order to grow a good crop of nice-sized apples.

That’s the conclusion reached by a team of researchers from

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Bee renting tips

Smith helps growers and beekeepers come together agreeably

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How bad things in the environment gang up and kill bees

The synergistic effect of pesticides in hives.

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Is there a better crab apple pollinizer?

No research is under way to evaluate pollinizers to replace Manchurian crab apple.

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Pollen tube growth model makes thinning more precise

Blossom-time apple thinning model explored for eastern growers.

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Bees live in a toxic world

Planting more flowers would help solve honeybee decline.

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More food for honeybees

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Landowners in the upper Midwest have until March 21 to apply for assistance under a new EQIP program designed to improve summer pasture for honeybees.

According to an announcement from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the

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Managing crab apple diseases

Crab apple disease management starts in the orchard with pruning.

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Michigan’s Expo draws record crowd

Speakers focus on threats to bees, funds for experiment stations, and fruiting walls.

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Bee Informed Partnership

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After five years of annual colony losses near or above 30 percent, beekeepers have settled in for the long haul in their struggle to find solutions to the problem of unsustainably high honeybee death losses.

Scientists

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Safe havens for pollinators

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A bumblebee finds nectar in a wildflower planting.
PHOTOS COURTESY OF USDA NATURAL RESOURCES CONSERVATION SERVICE

Fruit growers across the country will have a chance to sign up for a government program similar to what Michigan growers

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Three keys to successful pollination

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Queen bees lay eggs singly in cells of the honeycomb. After the eggs hatch, worker bees feed the larvae in the cells and cap them when the larvae pupate. A drone is pictured emerging from

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On a FasTrack

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Horticulturist Ralph Scorza pollinates plum flowers while geneticist Ann Callahan measures sugar content and molecular biologist Chris Dardick measures fruit size. FasTrack allows scientists to pollinate flowers and evaluate fruit from the same plants in

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Beauty with benefits

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David James

Restoring native sagebrush steppe habitat in and near vineyards and wineries in central Washington could attract more than just beneficial insects to the vineyard. By serving as a home for butterflies, the vineyards and

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New treatment against CCD

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Remebee is easily administered—mixed into heavy bee syrup and fed in one feeding of one pint. Some beekeepers are trying the latest version, RemebeePro, this year.
Photo courtesy of Eyal Ben-Chanoch

Beekeepers—and the fruit growers who depend

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Understanding cherry fruit set

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Researchers, with the help of electron scanning microscopes, can view cherry reproductive organs, like this stigma of a Sweetheart cherry.
Photo courtesy of Matt Whiting, WSU

Pollination and fruit set in sweet cherries play such big roles

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Beekeepers fear loss of forage

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The purple spotted knapweed flower is attractive to bees and a good nectar producer: However, once it gains a foothold, spotted knapweed kills competing vegetation and creates conditions for its own spread.
Photo by James H.

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Skimping on bees can be risky

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The strength of a bee colony is important, but it is difficult to assess without looking inside.

Bees are critical for setting a good crop, though the number of hives needed per acre can vary a

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Pollination role of native bees studied

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The price tag for renting honeybees for apple pollination, just $35 per hive a few years ago, now tops $100 in some regions. At one to two hives per acre, that’s a serious input cost

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Keep hives warm and dry

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Placing beehives in a good location in the orchard is one of the keys to getting honeybees to do the best possible pollinating job.

Orchardist Eric Olson of Yakima, Washington, who is one of the country’s

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Invite the whole community

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Mason bee nests in the orchard of Robert Schreiber at Poysdorf, Austria, pictured during an International Fruit Tree Association tour

Growers should think not about species of beneficial insects, but develop strategies, such as insectaries, to

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Cultivating beneficials

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Mike Omeg checks for beneficial insects in goldenrod plants in an insectary alongside a Regina cherry block. He’s watched by (from left) Drew Merritt and Kristin Currin of Humble Roots Farm & Nursery at Mosier,

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Good to Go

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Honeybee health
Honeybee specialists and native pollinator experts from around the country will discuss bee health and disease research during the Western Apicultural Society’s annual conference in Healdsburg, Sonoma County, ­California, August 17-20.

Other topics will include:

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