May 6, 2014, Ontario – Ontario is planning to help beekeepers rebuild their colonies and maintain the essential role honeybees play in the pollination of agricultural crops.
Due to harsh winter conditions this year and other pollinator health issues, the province's bee colonies are expected to experience higher than normal mortality rates. To help offset these losses, Ontario is providing one-time financial assistance of $105 per hive to beekeepers who have 10 hives or more and lose more than 40 per cent of their colonies between Jan. 1 and Oct. 31, 2014.
To be eligible for financial assistance, beekeepers must fill out an application form and meet a number of criteria including:
- Owning a minimum of 10 bee hives that have been registered with the Provincial Apiarist in 2014
- Experiencing more than a 40 per cent loss of bee hive inventory as set out in the 2014 calendar year certificate of registration issued by the Provincial Apiarist under the Bees Act
- Having an Agricorp Identification Number
- Having a Premises Identification Number
- Signing an attestation indicating that they have followed proper beekeeping practices and that the bee deaths were not caused by wildlife damage, vandalism, intentional death or negligence
Beekeepers should thoroughly review the program guidelines for a complete set of eligibility criteria. Forms will be available to beekeepers by May 16, 2014. The program will be delivered by Agricorp.
Eligible beekeepers can receive a maximum of $105 per bee hive, representing disaster-level coverage consistent with the national suite of Business Risk Management programs. Payments will be issued in two installments: the first payment in early summer for winter losses, and a second payment in December for any additional losses.