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“All the spring flowers, which is what the bees in Texas eat, all of them died. It was by far the worst year for bees,” said Ms Phillips, as she showed CNA hollowed-out hive carcasses piled up in her yard.

“I lost about … I stopped counting when it passed 50 colonies. I just stopped counting. It was just getting sad.”

A typical honeybee hive contains about 50,000 to 80,000 bees.

Ms Phillps, who owns Texas Honey Bee Farm, said climate change is the biggest challenge her bees are facing.

She routinely checks the rest of her beehives across her sprawling farm in Austin, Texas, to ensure that her bees are healthy, producing honey and free from diseases.