City of Florence works to protect bees

Pee Dee

FLORENCE, SC (WBTW) The Florence City Council decided to become an affiliate of Bee City USA. Councilwoman Pat Gibson-Hye Moore came up with the idea after realizing the important role bees play in society.

As a Bee City affiliate, Florence will now take extra measures to protect bees. Gibson-Hye Moore said the first step is raising awareness.

“You would think they’re a nuisance, but every living creature has a purpose. Their purpose is to pollinate and help grow good fruits, vegetables and flowers,” said Gibson-Hye Moore.

Bee City USA reports that one-out-of-three food we eat come from pollinators. To help bees stay alive, Florence will now cut back on mosquito spraying. The city will use an integrated pest management system instead.

The Florence Public Works office will also offer alternative methods to pesticides that can harm bees. Individuals interested can go by the Public Works office to receive assistance at 513 Barnes St. in Florence.

The Pee Dee Beekeepers Association also offers help with controlling bees and learning new information about them. David Yannello is a member of the organization and said paying attention to pesticide labels is important.

“You’re supposed to follow them by law (pesticide labels), but they’re very deadly to bees. Insecticides kill all insects and are not specific,” Yannello said.

Yannello has been a beekeeper for five years and said knowing when to spray your plants can also make a difference.

“You don’t want to spray your crops, or your vegetables, or your garden when the plants are blooming because that’s when the bees are going to be on them.”

Florence is the third city in South Carolina to become a Bee City USA affiliate, and the second in Florence County. Lake City also has the title.

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