Keep Bees Alive

It is a hard time to be a honey bee! Honey bee colonies have been dying at high rates every year for over 10 years. This year, beekeepers experienced almost a 40% loss. This is hard on bees and beekeepers. The Keep Bees Alive project has been designed to help beekeepers with some of the most common causes of colony death. 

Most beekeepers who are losing bees are losing them to Varroa and Varroa associated diseases. Often, beekeepers lose bees in their first few years of beekeeping. After losing bees year after year, some discouraged beekeepers quit and others find a way to keep their bees alive. We want healthy bees and happier beekeepers. Here are some resources that will help you keep your bees alive and healthy.

If you are struggling to keep your bees alive, watch these three videos first:

  1. Why Did My Bees Die?
  2. Understanding Varroa Risk
  3. Making a Plan for the Varroa Mite

Other resources on how to keep your colonies safe from the varroa mite:

Our philosophy

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Honey bees are animals, and they deserve to be well fed, healthy, and free to live their life as a bee.  When we keep honey bees in the United States, not only are we keeping them outside of their native range, but we are often asking them to live in places with a lot of environmental stress - not enough nutritious flowers, too much chemical exposures, and pressure from disease that are new to them.  As beekeepers, our job is to make sure that our bees are not to stressed, so our colonies can live healthy lives, and go about their business of being bees!

Our Goal

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Our goal is to reduce the number of honey bee colonies that die each year.  Our objective is to provide support and guidance to beekeepers who have lost colonies so they can determine the cause of death, and take actions to prevent the same stresses from affecting future colonies.

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If you have a specific topic that you would like addressed, or have questions, you can email mpi@msu.edu.

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