Flowers are blooming in and around spring showers, so please keep an eye out for honey bees, which are one of several types of animals that pollinate plants, including fruit and vegetable crops, and wildflowers. Honey bee populations have experienced declines in recent years, and this loss of pollinators has been a concern locally in Clifton Park, as well as nationally.
In order to support pollinator health, Town of Clifton Park Open Space, Trails & Riverfront Committee volunteers have been working on a “Habitat for Honeybees” project for the past few years. The town has been loaning out honey bee swarm boxes to offer a place for new swarms.
This summer, if you observe a honey bee swarm forming in a bee box that you have, a home or other structure, you may call local beekeepers, who have offered their assistance to help relocate honey bee swarms to habitats within Clifton Park environs: Roscoe Lilly, 495-1916; Brian Stitt, 396-7551; Ian Munger, 952-0223; or, David Fizer, 423-8355.
Swarms are a part of the natural reproductive cycle and occur most frequently during the spring and early summer, when bee colonies increase in size to the point where some of the bees leave to find a new home. After the bees leave the hive, they will land on a branch or some other object and form a cluster – a swarm – before they finish the move to their new home.
For information about the Clifton Park Honeybee Habitat Program, you may call the Open Space Coordinator at 371-6054; or committee volunteer, Frank Berlin, at 877-8324.
For any additional information about honey bees in general, the Southern Adirondack Beekeepers Association is a regional resource.