Northern California Almond growers concerned about the pollination of crops are relying on a surprising source for guidance.
Meteorologist Tom Dunkley offers a bee activity monitoring service.
“We started monitoring and forecasting bee flight hours in 1995. The service has really grown since that time and expanded, especially when the weather gets rough.”
Almonds depend entirely on bees to pollinate, but bees stay in the hive during cool, wet and windy weather. The crops must be pollinated while in bloom. Farmers fear reduced flight time for bees may mean a low yield from their crops this Spring.