The bee population of Ibiza has been drastically diminished during the past summer’s heatwave.
Vicente Mari Torres, the head of the Spanish island’s Association of Beekeepers, revealed that 30 to 40 per cent of the social flying insects died as they failed to endure the extreme temperatures of the summer months of 2022.
Mari Torres told the Periodica de Ibiza newspaper that beekeepers’ autumn honey production would be significantly affected by the development.
The Balearic island’s 115 beekeepers look after more than 3,200 hives, according to Mari Torres.
To ensure the wellbeing of Ibiza’s bees, the beekeepers union director appealed to the Mediterranean island’s residents and farmers not to use pesticides.
While sunny conditions are beneficial to bees, they struggle with temperatures as experienced during summertime heatwaves. Ibiza registered top daytime temperatures of over 35 degrees last July and August.
Adult honey bees can weather temperatures of up to 50 degrees centigrade. However, bee larvae are not as robust.
Beekeepers and local residents can support the colonies by placing small bowls of water on windowsills and balconies.
The Ibiza Tourism Office praises honey from the island as “one of Ibiza’s top-quality products.”
On its official website, the agency describes honey as “a delicacy that holds many secrets and benefits for health and the environment.
The tourism office of the island – which is one of the most popular summer vacation destinations in southern Europe – further underlines: “Air quality, the care of the countryside and forests and the control of invasive species that endanger their existence are essential to ensure not only their survival but also the balance of the ecosystem and agriculture.”