Did you know that pollinators, most often honey bees, are responsible for one in every three bites of food Americans consume, and increase our annual crop values by more than $15 billion? (source) In this extended episode of Regenerative Rising Podcast, guest hosted by Elizabeth Candelario, Michael Thiele, Founder and Executive Director of Apis Arborea, challenges the way we think about and support Apis Millifera – the honeybee. Michael has dedicated his life to the rehabilitation and protection of honeybees through rewilding, an approach that protects honeybees’ ability to express behaviours natural to their species and recognizes them as an integral part of the wild pollinator community. Michael’s pioneering approach has appeared in national and international magazines, books and films. He has presented his work at Harvard University & New York University, consulted for the USDA, and has spoken at conferences around the world.
Michael and Elizabeth dive into an in-depth discussion on the many blind spots, misconceptions and gaps in our approach to honeybees in the fields of agriculture and conservation. In fact, the industrialization of beekeeping mirrors that of livestock. Many may be shocked to discover that even within organic and regenerative farming practices we are following beekeeping management techniques that are degrading the health and resilience of this critical pollinator and indicator species. Listen to Michael share why his work with Apis Aboria is challenging modern beekeeping practices and instead, embracing the innate nature of the honeybee by creating the habitat and conditions for bees to reconnect to their true and wild essence.
Additionally, this podcast features an award winning movie short “Rewilding Honeybees” by documentary filmmaker Cameron Nielson. The nine minute video, that has not been released to the public yet, won Best Documentary Short at Sonoma International Film Festival and was a finalist at the Global Sustainability Awards. One minute of the film is incorporated into Michael and Elizabeth’s discussion, and the full short can be viewed at the end of the interview. We are very grateful to the filmmaker for allowing us to premier this incredible visual story of honeybee rewilding.