Bee rancher Laura Klahre at her Southold farm. (Credit: David Benthal)
The berries at Blossom Meadow Farm are handpicked twice daily. The first picking occurs shortly after owner and bee rancher Laura Klahre wakes. Rolling out of bed, still in pajamas, she wanders straight out to the two-acre farm field surrounding the Southold homestead she shares with her winemaker husband, Adam Suprenant.
Free-growing patches of grassland buzz with life as native pollinators fly from flower to flower and berry to berry, organically fostering higher yields and higher-quality fruit for the farm’s assorted hand-jarred jams.(more…)
Chris Kelly, a Mattituck entomologist and beekeeper, surveys the Italian Carnolian Cross bees in one of his backyard hives. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)
Here’s a piece of information that might surprise some people in our area — even those involved directly in agriculture. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, 35 percent of the world’s crops rely on pollinating animals like bees, butterflies and hummingbirds to reproduce.
Over the decades, however, these species have experienced steady population declines due to factors like loss of habitat. In 2014, the USDA reported, there were just 2.5 million honeybee colonies around the country. Compare that to 1947, when there were six million.(more…)