Spring is an important time for bees and other pollinators. They awaken from their winter slumber and begin looking for food.

That means browsing early-season flowers like dandelions and starting the swarming process around their queen.

According to Carbondale beekeeper Mark Burrows, we may consider dandelions to be a nuisance weed, but they’re a vital early springtime pollen source for bees and other insects.

He stressed the importance of avoiding pesticides use on dandelions.

A bee infected with pesticides can wipe out an entire hive.

Swarming, when large masses of bees cluster on trees and bushes, is also common in the spring.

Burrows noted that swarms don’t last long – sometimes just a few hours – and play an essential role in keeping the hive healthy.

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