Newspaper Article Archive of
The Kalona News
Kalona, Iowa
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Newspaper Article Archive of
The Kalona News

April 19, 2018 Legislation helps bees, monarchs in Iowa
Article Pages -- as published on the The Kalona News website.

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ARTICLE DESCRIPTION:

The North American monarch population has declined by more than 80 percent during the last 20 years, and bees are in danger due to diseases, chemicals and pests.

But Iowans have ideas to improve their numbers.

This week, the Legislature approved HF 2371, which updates state regulations for honeybee hives on public property.

This will allow Iowa schools to enhance their gardens with hives and use them as teaching tools. Tending to hives and observing bee activity provides kids with lessons in biology, agriculture, ecology, nutrition and business.

Despite their stingers, honeybees are docile, and with a little education, kids and bees can coexist in harmony.

Field and horticultural crops, home gardens and plants eaten by wildlife are dependent on bee pollination to produce their fruits, nuts and seeds.

The economic value of honey bees as crop pollinators in Iowa has been estimated at $92 million annually. Iowa honey bees also produce about 4 million pounds of honey each year, valued at more than $8 million. Learn more from the Iowa Honey Producers Association.

With the state of Iowa falling entirely within the monarch’s northern breeding area, their recovery cannot succeed without us.

The Iowa Monarch Conservation Consortium is a group of 40 organizations, including agricultural and conservation associations, agribusiness and utility companies, universities, and county, state and federal agencies. They recently set a goal to establish 480,000 to 830,000 acres of monarch habitat by 2038 on ag land, in urban areas, along roadsides and other public land.

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