University of Texas at Dallas
The Future of Bee Health Starts Here
At Nature Nate’s Honey Co., we believe that universities are responsible for invaluable contributions toward honeybee health. This education doesn’t stop with research and labs. At the University of Texas at Dallas, it goes further by teaching ambitious students about bees and beekeeping using the most responsible and sustainable practices. Since UT Dallas is our local university, we were excited to partner up for bee health!
After a student pointed out to Dr. Rippel that a swarm of honeybees had gathered on campus, and together, they went to go check it out, the professor was struck with an idea. He wanted to develop an apiary on campus for his students to get firsthand experience working with bees and learning about the honeybee in a course he would design for biology majors. When we, at Nature Nate’s, heard about this, we were excited to jump in. Along with a donation to help make this dream a reality, we were proud to be able to donate beekeeper suits as well.
Over the past few years, UT Dallas’s sustainability efforts have become one of the best in the country for universities. Eight acres on campus is a no-mow zone that encourages the growth of native prairie grasses and plants. Throughout campus, they have planted pollinator-friendly species. The flora provides breeding grounds and food sources for native pollinators, supporting their crucial role in maintaining flowering and food-producing plants. Around campus, the bees gather nectar from plants such as Indian blanket, Queen Anne’s lace, canola, horse mint, aster and goldenrod.
“If you can protect one species of insect, it will have a benefit for others,” Rippel said. “It becomes a synergistic effect. We have planted butterfly bushes on campus that are just covered with Monarchs as they migrate. But those bushes are also a source of nectar for honeybees.
“It comes down to habitat. If you have the right habitat, build it and they will come.”
Learn more about how Nature Nate’s Honey Co. contributes to bee health and our broader ecosystem.