COOL RIDGE, WV (WVNS) — Millions of bees call West Virginia home. Especially now during mating season. However, before you call an exterminator to take care of that swarm, do some research.
Mark Lilly, Head Bee Keeper at the Bee Collective, said bees are a part of our everyday lives.
“I like to think that pollinators are basically the thermometer of the quality of our environment. So when we start seeing pollinators, honey bees being one, native pollinators. When we see something happening to them it’s signaling something is happening to our environment that we need to take notice of,” said Lilly.
He said without bees and other pollinators, a lot of the foods we enjoy, wouldn’t exist.
“I don’t think that we’re often aware of the significance of insects in our diet. The farmer can plant the best seed he can buy into the most fertile ground. Get the right amount of sun and rain and the plant will grow and it’ll set forth bloom but it will never produce fruits or vegetables if it’s not pollinated,” said Lilly.
Lilly said there are laws in place to protect pollinators. Exterminators aren’t allowed to kill bees when working on a structure. Lilly said one major issue with keeping bees alive, is the use of pesticides. Another, is getting rid of their habitats.
“We want a perfect manicured lawn and that’s eliminating a lot of the forage that honey bees or bumble bees or butterflies, so many pollinators need so we have to be careful about how we affect the balance of nature,” said Lilly.
If a swarm of bees shows up at your house, call a bee keeper, Lilly said never try to handle the swarm yourself.