City moves bees from Tyler Rose Garden after safety, chemical concerns
TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - The tens of thousands of bees from the observation hive colony at the Tyler Rose Garden are moving to a temporary home.
The Rose Garden has been home to more than five colonies of bees since the bee observation hive was built in 2020, but now, the city is transferring the pollinators to a different historic landmark across town that is better suited for them.
This specific colony spent nearly three months at the rose gardens, but they had to be moved for their own safety, according to bee experts. Erin Garner, the community coordinator for Keep Tyler Beautiful said the bees will have a more ideal habitat at Goodman-LeGrand Museum and Gardens.
“Bees are very gentle and weren’t causing any issues with guests. It basically boiled down to the fact that in order to protect our roses, sometimes we do have to spray a more harmful chemical than we would prefer to as part of our integrated pest management plan, and we wanted to make sure that the safety of the bees was more important and moving them here means that we can ensure their safety,” she said.
Tyler is a Bee City USA affiliate, but Flint Farm & Apiary helper/beekeeper Konner Bennett said the chemicals used on the roses and in yards are extremely harmful and the reason so many colonies have failed in that location and across the city.
“When the bees are out foraging, and that chemical gets on them, they end up getting disoriented, and they can’t make it back to the hive, so our hives end up dying,” Bennett said. “There’s no reason that bees and roses can’t coexist in the same environment.”
In a statement* from the East Texas Beekeeping Association, they said, “We hope this open’s the public’s eyes to how chemicals used throughout our yards and gardens have a direct impact on the pollinators in our area.”
Garner assures that the chemicals will not be used at Goodman-LeGrand and said the gardens will have proper pollinator-friendly plants and flowers for the bees.
“We want to do the best thing for our bees here in Texas, and we want to promote that bees and other pollinators are super important to our ecosystem,” she said.
*East Texas Beekeeping Association Facebook Statement: “The East Texas Beekeepers Association regrets the relocation of the bees in the observation hive from the Rose Garden. Through our experience at keeping bees at the Rose Garden, we have learned the bees are detrimentally affected by the chemicals used to keep the roses in pristine condition. We hope this open’s the public’s eyes to how chemicals used throughout our yards and gardens have a direct impact on the pollinators in our area. Daniel Lennon will be moving the bees to Camp Tyler for a few months for the public to enjoy before they are moved to the Goodman-LeGrand Museum for Better Habitat in Spring 2024. We hope that they will thrive in their new location.”
Copyright 2023 KLTV. All rights reserved.