This short documentary considers how desperate beekeepers are trying to keep their hives alive.

"I spent $110,000 trying to feed my bees a supplement to keep them alive," says beekeeper David Bradshaw. "Unfortunately, every beekeeper I know has to artificially sustain their bees. There is just not enough forage in California." In this documentary, filmmaker Brian Dawson suggests that California's historic drought may play a role in the region's massive shortage of honeybees. Without arable land, increasingly desperate beekeepers turn to artificial diets to keep their hives alive. According to a Penn State study, similar diets may effect a honeybee's resistance to pesticides—and pesticides are cited by the USDA as one of the possible causes of a mysterious bee die-off known as Colony Collapse Disorder.

"Next year, I'll probably end up sending my bees to Kansas or North Dakota or South Dakota because the bees just can't survive out here," Bradshaw says. "I can't afford to keep feeding my bees all year long."

This post originally appeared on The Atlantic.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. A man sits in a room alone.
    Equity

    The World's First Minister of Loneliness

    Britain just created an entirely new ministry to tackle this serious public health concern.

  2. A small accessory dwelling unit—known as an ADU—is attached to an older single-family home in a Portland, Oregon, neighborhood.
    Design

    The Granny Flats Are Coming

    A new book argues that the U.S. is about to see more accessory dwelling units and guides homeowners on how to design and build them.

  3. Life

    Amazon Whittles Down List of HQ2 Contenders to 20 Finalists

    The list skews toward larger cities and metropolitan areas along the Eastern corridor, stretching as far north as Toronto and as far south as Miami. And it looks like some of the economic incentives might be paying off.

  4. Environment

    Britain's Next Megaproject: A Coast-to-Coast Forest

    The plan is for 50 million new trees to repopulate one of the least wooded parts of the country—and offer a natural escape from several cities in the north.

  5. Transportation

    On Paris Metro, Drug Abuse Reaches a Boiling Point

    The transit workers’ union says some stations on Line 12 are too dangerous to stop at. What will the city do?