This headline was shown at the AHPA conference this week, to a room
containing many of us who have pollinated almonds for many years. It drew
an uncomfortable chuckle, since it was not only ridiculous, but such
disinformation such can really hurt the almond industry.
Note in the article that beekeeper Arp is complaining about his colonies
collapsing in October, and specifically due to lack of varroa management.
And then the article somehow makes a quantum leap to blame Arp's troubles
on almond pollination (the previous year???).
If one takes healthy hives to almonds,, they generally come out even
stronger. I turned to the large pollination broker who was sitting next to
me, and asked them "what percentage of your beekeepers experience pesticide
problems in almonds?" They smiled and made a zero sign with their
Now I'll be the last to say that some haven't experienced serious problems
(I've inspected their colonies), but they are the exception rather than the
rule. Most of the commercial beekeepers that I know go to almonds happily,
with more trepidation about weather and mud, than about pesticides or
Just a reality check...
Grass Valley, CA