Examples of urban restoration and rewilding are critical in promoting grass roots efforts to restore ecosystems diversity in built environments. Honey bees are a vital part of many ecosystems, and urban beekeeping is a growing initiative with multiple benefits, spanning from ecological revitalization, to community cooperation, education, and cohesion. Here, we provide our own experience establishing an extensive system of roof top apiaries as cooperative effort between residents, schools, organizations, and businesses in the city of Detroit, Michigan. Our goal was to contribute to both the health of honey bee colonies and the education of their importance to our urban environment, through wide community engagement including interactive children’s educational events. Honey produced from this not-for-profit initiative is donated to local charities and small businesses, for fundraising, and also used for food and beverages in hospitality around the city. Research collaborations with scientists studying honey bee colony health, including the microbiome of honey bees, will explore possible solutions to help protect from pathogens and diseases. Most of all, we hope that this example will be of inspiration to others to take steps towards ecological solutions, in any and every form, within their own communities.
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