Drought should have little impact on honey producers

Jul 27, 2012

The ongoing drought is hurting many farmers and their crops, but not honey.

Ray Nabors is pretty positive about this year’s honey crop. He’s a retired apiculture specialist for the Delta Research Center in Portageville, Missouri and he’s kept bees for over 35 years.

In Missouri’s Bootheel, bees gather nectar from cotton and soybeans.

“The nectar that’s coming out of that cotton and soybeans because of this really hot, dry weather is thick. It’s not thin. So the bees are not having to dry it down as much, so they can gather more of it even though it’s a thicker consistency,” Nabors said.

That thick nectar should lead to a strong honey harvest. Naturally, the main impediment during drought is scarce water. Nabors says there could be less honey if bees spend too much time looking for water to cool down the hive.