The bees of New York

"If there are that many bees in Midtown, maybe it makes sense to put up some hives"

Topics: bees, New York City, Bank of America, department of health, ,

Unbeknown to most, some 100,000 European honeybees have taken up resident on the seventh floor rooftop of One Bryant Park. They’re busy at work pollinating its 6,000 square foot sedum and producing honey, which tenants of the building can expect to receive as a holiday gift. As The New York Times reports, the whole thing is almost too easy:

Beekeeping is a relatively cheap endeavor. It can cost just $125 to buy a package of bees, and there is no real maintenance involved. Bees are typically bred in the south and shipped north in April, sent to beekeepers in a cage the size of a lunch box that can be mailed through the United States Postal Service. To buy a mature hive that is already producing honey, like the ones the Durst Organization has, can cost $300 to as high as $1,000.

In New York, where bees have yet to face any food shortages, anyone can keep a beehive as long as it is registered with the city’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and there is a water source, something as simple as a bucket filled with water.

The bees  are Russian, and so are expected to survive the winter.

Lindsay Abrams

Lindsay Abrams is an assistant editor at Salon, focusing on all things sustainable. Follow her on Twitter @readingirl, email labrams@salon.com.

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