Helping the bee population, using proper pesticides

A local group in Broad Ripple wants people to think twice about the chemicals they may use on their yards. (WISH photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — When the weather is nice,a to-do list may include spraying the yard with pesticides.

A local group in Broad Ripple wants people to think twice about the chemicals they may use on their yards.

Kate Franzman is the Founder and Beekeeper of Bee Public. It operates on Public Greens garden space just off the Monon Trail in Broad Ripple.

She is on a mission to help the honeybee through her hives and by raising awareness.

“Pollinators account for one in every three bites we eat. So, the next time you eat, keep that number in your head. That’s a lot of food,” Franzman said.

Without honeybees and other important pollinators, there would be no honey or other fresh foods.

“They are disappearing and dying off at an alarming rate,” she added.

Franzman said the reason is due to Colony Collapse Disorder, changes in climate and pesticides people may use that contain neonicotinoids

“Sometimes bees are exposed to them and it doesn’t always kill them right away, but it can decrease their ability to find their way home. It messes with their internal GPS system,” she said.

When bees are exposed to those chemicals they will typically take them back into the hive before they die. That will create a bigger problem when other bees in the hive are exposed.

Her advice is to buy non GMO, organic seeds which can often be found at the local garden center.

Along with not using pesticides with those chemicals, people can do other things to help honeybees and other pollinators.

“The best thing you can actually do is plant flowers. So, flowers are bee feed, essentially. Make sure you buy non GMO, organic seeds. You can find those at your local garden center,” Franzman added.

Indianapolis passed a resolution in 2016 urging all city departments to not use pesticides with those dangerous chemicals.

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