Hives in the City: Keeping Honey Bees Alive in an Urban World

Hives in the City: Keeping Honey Bees Alive in an Urban World

by Alison Gillespie


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They keep their honey bees in unlikely places -- on the rooftops of high-rises, next to charter schools, behind row homes, and on abandoned lots. Some want to give the bees a haven away from the pesticides so often found in rural and suburban locations. Others want to increase the production of urban farms and gardens. All of the them share a love for these fascinating insects.

All of these beekeepers also know a terrible truth: the honey bees are in trouble. What exactly is causing bee die-offs and Colony Collapse Disorder remains unknown, and the way to save them a challenging mystery. But save them we must, since one third of our crops depend upon their pollination work, and even the bees in cities are failing in catastrophic numbers.

During the 2013 bee season, author Alison Gillespie followed urban beekeepers working in Washington, DC, Baltimore, Philadelphia and New York to find out how they maintain their hives in the city, and why they are drawn to these fascinating insects. She also talked with the scientists investigating the causes of the honey bees' decline.

The bees have a lot to show us about our food production, and our relationships with nature - even in the city. In the midst of this terrible environmental problem, there is optimism and hope to be found in the stories of people who are keeping bees in the most concrete-laden, urban places. There are ways that everyone - even those who don't keep bees - can help.

"This book offers an intriguing look at how city beekeepers cope with landscapes, laws, and attitudes that are often antagonistic to the notion of stinging insects. In straightforward prose that sometimes touches on the lyrical, Gillespie provides a fair and unbiased look at the urban side of beekeeping and an especially good portrait of the personalities behind city hives. If you are interested in urban beekeeping or the people who do it, the book offers a comprehensive peek into a very different-and sometimes strange-world."

--Rusty Burlew, Director of the Native Bee Conservancy and author of the "Honey Bee Suite" blog

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780996025904
Publisher: Croydon Hill
Publication date: 03/26/2014
Pages: 328
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.73(d)

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