Springtime workshop on bees and their care

Courier photo by John Waters At the Rio Grande Farm Park on May 20, Aaron Miltenberger (right) demonstrates bee care.

ALAMOSA — The Rio Grande Farm Park in Alamosa offered a bee workshop on May 20 that gave attendees a firsthand look at hives and an opportunity to learn bee care and queen bee identification.

According to Colorado State University Extension, there are 946 native bee species in Colorado. Of all the pollinators in gardens, natural areas, and agricultural fields, bees are the most efficient. The honeybee was introduced to the United States by European settlers in the 1600s and is now part of the landscape.

In a recent study commissioned by the National Academy of Sciences, the bee population in Colorado has declined by 63% since 1998. To stabilize the bee population, on May 17, Governor Jared Polis signed SB23-266, limiting the use of bee-killing pesticides.

If you would like to attract bees these native plants can assist Blue Flax, Yarrow, common sunflower, rabbitbrush, and the Rocky Mountain bee plant.