COMFORT, JONES COUNTY -

One local bee keeper named Barry Jones is helping the bee population by building bee hives from scratch and donating them to students. Jones has always been passionate about bees, but recently more farmers are getting involved due to the drastic die-off of honey bees across the country.

"Bees are in trouble because of pests and diseases that have come into this country in the last 20-25 years" says Billy Taylor, one of Barry Jones' students.

Before the boxes are turned over to the new keepers Jones will fill them with a colony of bees. This usually happens in the spring when the bees swarm into new colonies high in the trees.

"Some of these trees you see with the limbs broken off are places I've gone out on a limb and cut the branch off and brought the bees down so I could shake them into a box," says Jones.

Jones always welcomes new students. The Duplin County Cooperative Extension Office has recently asked him to be a guest teacher in a new bee keeping class they have started. They are asking anyone interested to join them for the next class on January 2nd.

For more information, contact Tom Hroza at or by phone at 910-296-2143