Save the FL Hurricane Bees!

$2,952 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 41 people in 1 month
On Oct 10, 2018 Hurricane Michael came ashore in the panhandle as a category 4 storm and one of the most powerful storms to ever hit the gulf coast.  Bay, Gulf, Franklin, Liberty, Washington, Wakulla, Gadsden, and Calhoun counties were the hardest hit.

These counties in the panhandle are a unique ecosystem and a prime beekeeping area. It is the only place where white tupelo trees grow in sufficient quantity to make world famous Tupelo Honey.  There are several hundred beekeepers who manage about 50,000 bee hives in this remote and rural part of Florida.  In addition to the devastation to their homes and property the storm turned the area into a landscape devoid of forage for honey bees.   Beekeepers from around the state are working to bring relief and help keep bees alive.  Not only do bees need sugar syrup , they also need pollen substitute.    We estimate that 25,000 gallons or 5 tanker loads of sugar syrup and 20,000 lbs of pollen are needed to meet the critical and immediate needs.  The same amount will be required in another 10-14 days. 

The Florida Bee Research Foundation is registered as a non profit corporation  in the state of Florida .  Recognition by the IRS as a 501(c)(5) is pending.  Our primary mission is to identify and fund  research relevant to beekeeping in Florida.   Considering the magnitude of Hurricane Michael,  we are working to meet immediate needs for keeping bees alive.    The total cost to provide feed for 4 weeks is estimated at $190,000.  Many of these bees are the foundation stock that ship to California for almond pollination and to orchards for fruit pollination.  We can not afford to lose this many bees. 

Our goal  is to raise enough money to purchase 10,000 gallons  of syrup and 6000 lbs of pollen.  This will be distributed to beekeepers in the impacted area at no cost to them.    There is a 3-5 day lead time on syrup delivery so time is now critical for us.  If there is a concern for honey bee health we need to meet this goal within 48 hours in order to keep as many bees alive as possible.
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We are getting reports of bees starting to look better. I dont think I can say looking good for we are a fair way from that point. They are looking better. Bee activity is becoming more normal, there is less robbing between hives , and bees are looking a lot less stressed. We are not out of the woods yet but are headed in the right direction. The effects of stress on colonies may not be fully realized for several months. Two main income sources for panhandle beekeepers are tupleo honey and almond pollination in California. Tupelo honey production is generally considered lost for the next several years as trees recover. Unless bees are strong enough to make the grade for shipping to California in January it could mean financial disaster for beekeepers affected and the further decimation of bee populations in the Florida panhandle region.
Your financial support is allowing us to continue bringing feed and equipment to the affected areas. Without your support it would not happen.
Thank You
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Great news.
38,000 lbs pollen supplement arrived for distribution to hungry bees thanks to GreaterGood.org. This will provide about 3/4 pound to each hive in the hurricane damaged area. Distribution begins 0800 at the Jackson County Ag Center in Marianna. An additional 5000 pounds donated by Mann Lake is scheduled for delivery to Bristol Fl later today.
Thanks for supporting this site. Your contributions are used to purchase supplies needed on the ground, equipment to facilitate distribution, fuel, and communications expenses to keep a steady flow of relief information going out to Beekeepers
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Thank you everyone who is supporting. we had another tanker load of syrup delivered to Wewahitchka yesterday. We are working on two more loads of syrup ( 9500 gallons and a semi load of pollen ( 35000 lbs) tobe delivered in the next couple of days. Funds generated here have been utilized to purchase additional 275 gallon totes for beekeepers to transport and store syrup, pumps to move the syrup as needed, fuel to run the pumps ,forklifts and generators to keep operations going. Beekeepers are cutting debris from bee yards and getting feed out as fast as they can. Many of thee beekeepers are also relief volunteers helping neighbors and community. Your help is appreciated and your donations are being used wisely to make sure that the flow of bee feed is not interrupted.
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First of all thanks to everyone who has supported this fund and all the other fund raising efforts taking place.
Here is a recap of what has been accomplished so far.
Oct 18th Tanker load s of syrup delivered to Marianna Fl and Bristol Fl
Oct 19th Tanker load of syrup delivered to Wewahitchka Fl
Oct 20th Tanker load of syrup delivered to Bristol FL
Oct 21 We are working to stage more equipment and materials for upcoming week
Oct 22 tanker load of syrup headed to Wewahitchka Fl
Anticipated 2 tanker loads of syrup to highest need area
Semi load of dry pollen substitute to be delivered and distributed
Additional relief supplies are being worked on Dry Sugar for feed, additional syrup, bee supplies, protein

This is a tremendous outpouring of love and support that could not be possible without these organizations an people.
Florida Department of Agriculture
JEJ Associates
Florida Agritourism Association
Florida State Beekeepers Association
Florida IFAS
UF Honey Bee Lab
Jackson County Ag Center
The Bee House Bristol FL
Dalkeith Volunteer Fire Station
The many beekeepers in the affected area that have donated time, equipment and relayed information while basic phone and internet service is down
The supporters of this funding and other funding effort making it all possible
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$2,952 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 41 people in 1 month
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