Despite this past winter’s extended stretch of extreme cold, Iowa’s honey bee population is in good shape.
State Apiarist Andrew Joseph says he’s impressed with the numbers.
"Well I’m happy to say that things are going pretty well right now in this blink in time," he said. "There’s a lot of bees out there that are building up quite nicely through this spring and there are a lot of plants that are coming into bloom for them."
Joseph credits backyard beekeepers for helping re-establish some of the colonies. He says ten years ago, there were about 1,500 producers in the state. That number has increased three fold. Joseph says he’s impressed with the availability of beekeeping supplies. He says in most parts of the state if you wake up one morning in April or May and decide you want honeybees, you can establish a hive by the end of the day.