Entomology Division, Nigerian Institute for Oil Palm Research, Nigeria
Insect pollinators contribute to agricultural crop yield and beekeeping provides a major source of livelihoods for farmers in Nigeria. This study developed two survey questionnaires and collected data from beekeepers, researchers and government officials to generate quantitative indicators for the purpose of description as a guide to action. Evaluation and characterization of colony bee loses by beekeepers were assessed. The surveys conducted between October 2015 and March 2016 consisted of questions related to: the importance of pollinators, including managed honeybees (Apismellifera), in agriculture and observations on factors associated with pollinator declines; and management of bee mortality. Evaluation and characterization of colony bee loses by beekeepers in Osun State was conducted. Responses were received from 31 beekeepers and 20 policy makers and researchers. 81% of beekeepers reported a reduction in number of colonies. The results inform policy action on pollinator benefits for increasing crop yield and helping smallholder farmers adapt to a decline in insect pollinators. This study emphasizes pollination and insect pollinators as drivers of agricultural crop production with a view to providing guidance for sustainable management of pollinators and achievement of green growth objectives.
Keywords: Bee keepers, Colony bee loses, Crop yield, Insect pollinators, Policy makers