Radisson Blu Mall of America is now home to honey bee colonies provided by the University of Minnesota Bee Squad. Inspired by Dr. Marla Spivak at the University of Minnesota Bee Lab, the Bee Squad helps beekeepers and the community in the Twin Cities area foster healthy bee populations and pollinate landscapes through education and hands-on mentorship.
The hotel’s two honey bee colonies are each home to about 10,000 honey bees. The colonies will live on the hotel’s roof, growing larger all summer until there are about 40,000–50,000 honey bees per colony. In the spring, the Bee Squad will divide each of the original two colonies into two additional colonies.
- In Brief Without the pollinating services bees provide, there would be serious challenges in the production of many common foods as 35% of global food supply and more than 80% of flowering plants are dependent on animal pollination, according to Carlson Rezidor.
- The Bee Squad will only remove surplus honey from the colonies, which will be used on-site in FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar.
- Since 2006, approximately one out of every three honey bee colonies has died each winter because of disease and the impact of pesticides in the environment.