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The death of bees

Beekeeper Dave Kaneaster holds a handful of dead bees Nov. 22 at his bee yard in Bliss. Magic Valley beekeepers have struggled to keep their bees alive in recent years, and the Kaneaster family's 2019 losses have been especially brutal. 

Magic Valley beekeepers are losing their bees at alarming rates. In this overview of current perils for beekeepers around the area, Business and Environment Reporter Colin Tiernan takes a close look at the challenges the apiarists are facing, and some of the factors that could be behind them.

Honey farmers from Bliss, Buhl, Burley, Gooding, the Hagerman Valley and beyond are facing what some of them call “total devastation” as massive portions of their insect population continue to perish. Mites, fungicide and loss of food sources are some of the critical issues they are battling.

Those who have been in the honey and pollination business for many years aren’t sure what the future will bring. As their hives disappear, so does their livelihood. Some are asking for support, while others are seeking answers to the conundrum.

News+ members can read the Big Story on Wednesday at Magicvalley.com. The whole package will be in Sunday’s Times-News. See more of the Times-News’ best reporting now at Magicvalley.com/bigstory.

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