There are hundreds of species of native bees in Colorado as well as several thousand hives of the honey bee (Apis mellifera) managed commercially and by hobby beekeepers across the state. All of these species as well as butterflies, moths, flies, hummingbirds and others are very important pollinators of native and non-native crop and landscape plants.
All pollinators are facing threats from complex interacting factors. Managed honey bees (Apis mellifera) are facing threats from increased disease and mite parasites, lack of genetic diversity, habitat loss due to expansion of urban landscapes and crop monoculture, stress due to transport of commercial hives to California to pollinate almonds and environmental toxins including pesticides.
The Colorado Department of Agriculture supports the use of integrated hive management to promote proper hive hygiene, mite and disease management, regulates the proper use of pesticides and promotes improved habitat for all pollinators.
Other CDA Pollinator Information
- CDA Pollinator Protection and Apiary Program Summary of Accomplishments
- What crops rely on pollinators in Colorado?
- Gardening for insects, Colorado State University Extension
- Biology of Bees and Wasps, CSU Extension
- Gardening for beneficial insects