Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

By Judy Lynes
Phelps Agency 

HoneyLove.org Hosting Bee Box-Building and Painting Event April 30

Help save the bees by finding some inspiration for painting a bee box.

 

April 27, 2017

Spring is a vulnerable time in the life of honey bees.

Spring is a vulnerable time in the life of honey bees. The bees leaving the hive to create a new home are provisioned only with the nectar or honey they carry in their stomachs. A swarm will starve if it does not quickly find a home and more nectar stores.

It's a good thing when honey bees swarm in the spring-great, in fact. It means they're healthy, their colony is growing and about half the bees have left in search of a place to start a new colony. Homeowners can help by building a bee box where those helpful pollinators can temporarily take up residence and then call bee experts to come and collect them. Think of it as your own "Air Bee N Bee."

HoneyLove, a nonprofit organization that encourages urban beekeepers, is hosting an event to help people build their own bee box, Sunday, April 30, 2017 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Dunn-Edwards Paints in Culver City. Zero-VOC paints will be provided by Dunn-Edwards for people to decorate their bee boxes and they will award prizes for the most creative boxes and paint samples to take home.

The bees leaving the hive to create a new home are provisioned only with the nectar or honey they carry in their stomachs. A swarm will starve if it does not quickly find a home and more nectar stores.

Street mural artist Clinton Bopp (who often incorporates bees into his designs) will be on hand to help people draw and paint their boxes. HoneyLove's Bee Team will provide all the materials for the bee boxes, plus fun activities for kids, bee costumes and information about backyard beekeeping. Conrad Burton, head apiary inspector for LA County, will provide tips about how to register and keep a bee hive legally in one's own backyard.

"If you see a big cluster of bees on a tree or roof eave, consider yourself lucky," said Paul Hekimian, director of the Los Angeles-based HoneyLove. "The bees have chosen you for their spring shelter and you have an opportunity to save them.

Hekimian points out how critically important it is for all of us to help bees flourish. Last year, beekeepers lost 44 percent of their honey bee colonies, and seven species of honey bees are on the U.S. endangered species list. "If bees are not around to pollinate our food crops, we won't be able to feed the current population. If the bees go, we go-literally."

For more information about the event and what you can do to help save bees or become an urban beekeeper yourself, visit http://www.honeylove.org.

 

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