Tupelo honey harvest looking good after Hurricane Michael

BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Area beekeepers are buzzing with the recent news that not all is lost for this year's honey harvest after Hurricane Michael.

Hurricane Michael left beekeepers in the area wondering what they could expect for tupelo honey season.

Buddy Rich, a beekeeper, said, "About 80 percent of the bees, or trees, Tupelo trees on the Apalachicola, Chattahoochee River area, including Wewa, was damaged."

But beekeepers say what they thought destroyed their crop, actually might have helped.

"One of the advantages of the storm is that it, by them topping off the trees, the lower trees are able to get the light, and it's causing more blooms," said Rich.

And the Tupelo honey trees seem to be even stronger.

"They are having an extended tupelo harvest right now, it's already been blooming for almost two weeks and they anticipate another two weeks of blooming. Normally it only blooms from 10-14 days," said Rich.

Beekeepers feared there would be less honey to harvest.

"The bees seem like they're doubling their brew production," said Rich.

But they say the hurricane actually seemed to be sweet for beekeepers.

"If you look at what is actually happening in the bee world, insect world, in the plant world, and agriculture, it's coming back twice as strong as it was," said Rich.

And as for the price of honey...

"I anticipate it being the same, maybe rising a little bit but not by much," said Beekeeper Charles Hay.

Despite Hurricane Michael, these busy bees can keep on making honey.