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Wyoming Beekeeping Industry Focus of UW Study


October 16, 2013 — Wyoming’s agriculture greatly supports its economy and, behind the farmers there are small yet integral workers flying unnoticed.

Declining pollinator populations haven’t gone unnoticed in Wyoming.

Mariah Ehmke, University of Wyoming College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics associate professor, was awarded a $49,992 Federal State Marketing Improvement Program grant through the U.S. Department of Agriculture to study the role of Wyoming’s beekeepers in western and national markets.

People typically think of beekeepers for their sweet-tasting end product, but Ehmke says the pollinator market hasn’t been studied as much as others.

“We’re relying more and more on beekeeper bees (for pollination), and the beekeepers know they can make more money than honey,” she said. “There’s a lot that can be learned about what beekeepers are currently doing.”

Ehmke plans to send out surveys this winter to collect data on current beekeeping operations. The study will focus on expanding the potential of Wyoming’s beekeeping industry.

For more information, contact Ehmke at (307) 766-5373 or email mehmke@uwyo.edu.

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