Sunday, May 17, 2009

Honeybee Breeder Works to Save Our Food Supply

By Heather McPherson, Orlando Sentinel (USA), 5/17/2009,0,4694339.story

GROVELAND, Florida - Dave Miksa is saving the world — one queen bee at a time.

As a queen breeder Miksa is one of about 50 specialists who are maintaining the endangered bee population by providing thoroughbred royalty to raise colonies.

"Without honeybee pollination, the food we eat could decrease by a third," said Jamie Ellis, an assistant professor of entomology at the University of Florida. And Florida's weather puts Miksa ahead of many of his colleagues because while others are still thawing out in spring, hives at his Lake County honey farm are bustling with activity.

"Dave's work is indisputably key to maintaining the country's bee population," said Doug McGinnis, the second-generation owner of Tropical Blossom Honey Co. in Edgewater. "Queen rearers of his caliber are responsible for developing strong, pest-resistant insects, and that makes them the most important facet of our industry."…

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