Monday, 30 August 2010

CATCH THE BUZZ - Apple Genome Deciphered



Apple genome Pealed Away

   By Alan Harman

An international team of scientists from Italy, France, New Zealand, Belgium and the United States publish a draft sequence of the domestic apple genome.

   The availability of a genome sequence for apple will allow scientists to more rapidly identify which genes provide desirable characteristics to the fruit and which genes and gene variants provide disease or drought resistance to the plant.

   The information can be used to rapidly improve the plants through more informed selective breeding.

   An organism's genome is the total of all its genetic information, including genes. Genes carry information that determines, among other things, a plant's appearance, health, productivity and color and taste of the fruit.

   Led by Washington State University (WSU) horticultural genomicist Amit Dhingra, the Washington-based team sequenced and analysed a unique version of the genome of the golden delicious apple in which all duplicated chromosomes are genetically identical.

   This information was used to validate the sequence of the more complicated “heterozygous” golden delicious apple, in which duplicated chromosomes are not identical.

   “Before genome sequencing, the best we could do was correlate traits with genes,” Dhingra says. “Now we can point to a specific gene and say, ‘This is the one; this gene is responsible for this trait'.

   “That trait of interest might be, for instance, a disease, which is why sequencing the human genome was such an important milestone. Or the trait might be for something desirable, like flavour in a piece of fruit.

   “We are already working on finding physiological solutions to issues such as bitter pit in current apple varieties with the gene-based information available to us and lay a foundation for improved varieties in the future through generation of sports (mutations) and breeding.”

   While the apple genome provides a valuable resource for future research, one pressing question answered by the international team's paper in the journal Nature Genetics was one of origin.

   Scientists have long wanted to know, and have for years argued vehemently about, the ancestor of the modern domesticated apple.

   The question is now settled with the researchers saying Malus sieversii, native to the mountains of southern Kazakhstan, is the apple's wild ancestor.

   “Having the apple genome sequence will greatly accelerate our ability to define the differences between apple cultivars at the genetic level,” WSU Tree Fruit Research and Extension Center apple breeder Kate Evans says.

   “This will allow us to exploit these differences and target areas of diversity to incorporate into the breeding program, resulting in improved cultivars for the consumers that are also better suited for long-term, sustainable production.”


Build an entire bee hive with just a table saw. Go to Garreson Publishing. Books by Peter Sieling.

Find out What’s New At Mann Lake right Here

Protein feeding pays off with better bee health, better survival, better production, and better wintering.  Learn More.

 Subscribe to Malcolm Sanford’s Apis Newsletter right here For a comprehensive listing of beekeeping events around the country and around the globe, check out Bee Culture’s Global Beekeeping Calendar

Check out the Biggest Honey Show there is this fall at

 This message brought to you by Bee Culture, The Magazine Of American Beekeeping, published by the A.I. Root Company.

Read an EXCLUSIVE CHAPTER from Tom Seeley’s new book Honey Bee Democracy, only on Bee Culture’s web page Here!



Thursday, 26 August 2010

CATCH THE BUZZ - Scientist Of The Week



Scientist of the Week: Dennis vanEngelsdorp

Laboratory Equipment magazine features a Scientist of the Week, chosen from the science industry’s latest headlines. This week’s scientist is Dennis vanEngelsdorp from Penn State Univ. vanEngelsdorp has been tracing and researching the rapid decline of honeybee colonies, a problem he says has heavy implications as bees are intrinsically linked to our environment, as well as our food supply.

Q: What made you research bees?
A: It goes back to when I was an undergraduate student actually. I took a bee keeping course as an elective. There is a saying in the bee world, “once you get stung by a bee, it’s in your blood and you are in for life.” That turned out true for me. They are such a fascinated species, I am just fascinated by them.

Q: As of now, what do you think the future of bees and pollinators are?
A: I do not think they are going to go extinct. Commercial beekeepers, who own half the population of bees, are trucking them up and down the coast to pollinate and the beekeepers have been losing a lot of colonies for four years now. I worry that they can’t keep it going, especially financially. I think it is their love of bees that only keeps them going.

Q: What was the most surprising area of your research?
A: The most surprising thing of the CCD (colony collapse disorder) research that came up was in that first year- when we were mapping we thought we would find one clear cut cause of CCD and then be able to find a solution. That was naïve. Our work has highlighted that a lot of different things stress and kill bees. There is a segment killed by CCD, but there is a lot of colony mortality going on in general. That was a reminder that everything is so interrelated- and so complicated. That means the solution is going to be complicated, too.

Q: What is the “take home” message of your research and results?
A: Three are three messages: 1.) Honeybees are vital if we want to continue producing fruits and vegetables. 2.) A lot of different environments factors stress bees. Bees are an indicator species, they are a keystone. There is a lot of environmental studies going on in that department now. 3.) It is so complicated. There are a lot of different factors causing bee mortality. Here, the general public can help. We have seen a swell in public interest, and from the corporate side as well. The public can do a lot of things to help. Buy local honey, bee a bee keeper, plant a garden, have room in your environment for pollination. There are thousands of bee species in this country, not just honeybees, and we need to have room for them as well.

Q: What is next for you and your research?
A: A lot of academic research has been going on now. We are conducting autopsies on the bees looking for new organisms associated with honeybees. We thought we would be looking for diseases in the bees, but now we are particularly interested in the organisms associated with the species.

Find out What’s New At Mann Lake right Here

Protein feeding pays off with better bee health, better survival, better production, and better wintering.  Learn More.

 Subscribe to Malcolm Sanford’s Apis Newsletter right here For a comprehensive listing of beekeeping events around the country and around the globe, check out Bee Culture’s Global Beekeeping Calendar

Check out the Biggest Honey Show there is this fall at

 This message brought to you by Bee Culture, The Magazine Of American Beekeeping, published by the A.I. Root Company.

Read an EXCLUSIVE CHAPTER from Tom Seeley’s new book Honey Bee Democracy, only on Bee Culture’s web page Here!



Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Apis Newsletter, August 18, 2010

Dear Subscribers,

This month's Apis newsletter is delayed as I am just back from a swing out west where I addressed the Denver Beekeepers Association . Thanks to Marygael Meister and her crew for some great hospitality.  I presented a discussion on honey standards . At the conclusion of my trip I was hosted by Dr. Jerry Bromenshenk of Bee Alert Technology
who is at the moment conducting a demonstration of landmine detection for both military and civilian observers at Ft. Leonard Wood, Missouri. Let's wish him luck on this intriguing technology.

The hot summer continues here in Gainesville, FL; we had a spate of 40 days with the mercury over 90 degrees F., a record heat wave.  I guess we shouldn't complain too much considering the fires in Russia and the recent flooding of the Indus River in Pakistan. Fortunately, we have not had a full blown hurricane yet, although conditions appear to remain ripe, as we enter the most active season of the year.

September is National Honey Month.  It is a great time to promote the sweet and get the word out about one of nature's  most exquisite foods.  It also will coincide with the release of Storey's Guide to Keeping Honey Bees, my updating of two books long in print by Dick Bonney, Practical Beekeeping and Hive Management.  So far, I am scheduled to market the volume at the Decatur, GA Book Festival Sept. 2-6, 2010  and the Mother Earth News Fair, Seven Springs Mountain Resort, Seven Springs, PA. Sept. 25-26, 2010 .

I was taken to task by my remarks last month concerning an “Apitrack newsletter.” The newsletter I referred to is published by Apinews. Apitrack is a commercial sponsor.  Also remarks about small hive beetle being introduced in Zacatecas State, Mexico were in error; it has yet to show up there, but does exist in the states of Coahuila y Tamaulipas.  I mistakenly stated this came from a report in Espacio Apícola   from Argentina.  Read the  full report here. wrote about my discussion of brood nest management to control  Varroa last month: “...sometimes making splits, producing a break in the brood cycle, and introducing a new queen can be a good way to keep the Varroa population to tolerable levels.  This could also provide the wherewithal for a colony to produce the critical winter bees so important to survive the following winter.”

He notes, “I don't understand how a break in the brood cycle leads to lower mite population, or how introducing a new queen does, either.  And, it seems to me that making a split this time of year would hinder the winter population.  Obviously I must be thinking of things backwards, but it seems that a hive that is well established now would have a better chance of making it through the winter??”

Ross Conrad writes in his book Natural Beekeeping, “ was realized early on that newly made splits from a previous year had much higher survival rate than the older, stronger hives that had already overwintered a season or two.”  Thus, he recommends “...regular production of nucleus colonies.”  Three factors he believes are at work: 1. Removing brood to make a nucleus also removes many mites; 2. Larger nests not only have more brood (and mites), but more foragers in the field, which also can infest the home colony with those brought in from other colonies (a process known as “phoresis.”); and 3. young queens seem to produce more vigorous colonies that are simply more resistant to mites.  This situation to my knowledge hasn't been the focus of much rigorous research, but has been suggested by a number of practicing beekeepers based on their observations.

Check out the study concerning Serbian beekeeping
: Abstract: "The study researched the costs and returns on typical small beekeeping farms from five districts in Serbia. On the basis of the field research, data on the number of beehives, type of product, volume of production per beehive and values per measurement unit were collected. In order to demonstrate the competitiveness of various apicultural products, analysis of the available data was performed using analytical calculations. According to the analysis, the labour costs comprise about 49.65%to 64.15%of the variable costs on beekeeping farms in the Raška and Šumadija districts, respectively. Production ismost economical on the bee farmin the district of Srem, where every dinar spent in production creates a value of 2.22 dinars, while the farm from the district of Raška is the least economical (1.32 din). Bee farms must reduce labour costs and re-direct their business orientation to other bee products, besides honey, such as pollen, whi ch could be significantly more profitable."   My guess is these conclusions would be the same in most areas of the world where commercial pollination has yet to take off.

The Vanishing of the Bees Documentary is about to be heavily marketed to the beekeeping community and others.  “After three long years we are delighted to announce that Vanishing of the Bees, narrated by Oscar-nominated actress Ellen Page, is finally complete!!!! We now have a solid and provocative film and we need your help to reach our next goal – getting folks to see the film."

“New rules passed by the USDA now offer financial incentives for the establishment of pollinator habitat through the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). The limited time program sign-up, which opens today to new enrollments, provides one of the largest pollinator conservation opportunities ever in the United States.

 “The CRP program, first established in 1985, is the largest private landowner conservation effort in the United States with up to 32 million acres eligible for enrollment through the USDA’s Farm Service Agency. Program participants take highly erodible land out of crop production, and establish permanent vegetation to protect topsoil and provide wildlife cover. Contracts which run 10 to 15 years provide annual rental payments on enrolled land, and cost-share assistance for establishing vegetative cover.”

“I recently discovered your blog, and I have become a frequent reader. My name is Alan with. and we recently published an article “10 Valuable Life & Business Lessons You Can Learn from Bees” that dovetails well with your audience. Perhaps you would be interested in sharing with them? Here's the link to the article if you would like to take a quick look for yourself.”  There's quite a bit of anthropomorphism here, but the advice is sound.

A reminder to always check what's new at the Bee Health site.

Check out links I have put up on the blog  and  These include a new fact sheet on small hive beetle, subsidies for European beekeepers, using mellitin in human medicine, among others.

Gleanings from the August 2010 edition of Bee Culture:

Remember that Bee Culture is now available in a digital edition:
Barbara Hickey, Norfolk,VA says there's a bee ban on.  You can own three dogs, three cats and one pig in your apartment, but no bees.  Editor Flottum advises checking out the No Buzz Zone at the Daily Green:  ; hmmm! All of Florida is considered a No Buzz Zone; don't tell the several hundred members of the Florida State Beekeepers Asssociation:
This dovetails nicely with Steve Bamford writing of his dilemma in the Capitol, Tallahassee, FL who has a “no buzz neighbor” and may be forced to move.

Jeremy Barnes, Seven Valleys, PA asks where all those Australian bees that are imported for pollinating almonds end up.  No one is tracking this; should they?
D.B. Waltrip in Florida wonders about all that oil and its potential impact on honey bees.  Editor Flottum replies “we don't know.”  Eric Nitsch, Westfield, MA writes about the “best smoker fuel” he's used, wood shavings, produced by a chainsaw and cutting with the grain.

Editor Flottum reviews the whole beekeeping year starting in the fall (August).  That is indeed the new paradigm; used to be Spring started the year and determined how successful one  might be. Not anymore; another transformation caused by mites has created a different schedule. Read why he thinks farm markets are the way to go to sell honey, and some tips about ensuring you have a proper audience; bee sure you have a supply of business cards.  He says “tongue in cheek” to Look for an article from Tom Theobald entitled: “Wrong Number – Cell Phones and Honey Bees.”  This  story will not go away.

New from equipment manufacturers is the “Beetle Jail,” yet another trap, and a bottom mounted rear-opening pollen trap.  Also a new children's book for ages 4-10, In the Trees, Honey Bees.  There's a review of the newest Complete Idiot's Guide to Beekeeping, published by the Penguin Group.

Clarence Collison and Audrey Sheridan take a closer look at balling behavior.  This is a way colonies get rid of superfluous queens. Read about the fascinating ways researchers have discovered that pheromones might be involved.

J. Lloyd Harris writes that it pays to know how many bees are in the box.  Read how tis can be done using a computer.  The spreadsheet can be  downloaded  at

Kerry Lynott sends news from the front line. She and others are involved collecting data for the Stationary Monitoring Scheme of the Managed Pollinator Coordinated Agricultural Project or CAP.  Read what it takes to ensure the information is correct and up-to-date by analyzing 5,040 samples in a six-month period.

Lesley Chesson and Brett Tipple believe it is getting easier to find out how local honey really is.  The information is recorded conveniently in the product's hydrogen and oxygen isotope ratios. Soon, interested persons will be able to consult a map to determine exactly where their food comes from based on the local water supply.

Larry Connor examines the possibilities for queen introduction.  Read his analysis of these techniques.  It appears that introducing virgin queens might be more viable than previously thought.

Roger Hoopingarner offers thanks to L.L. Langstroth for his understanding of classical languages, which ultimately allowed him to introduce “improved” stock from other parts  of the world.  Read Dr. Hoopingarner's description of how this came about and why we in the U.S. now have a rich trove of choices in bee types. Check out the Langstroth Bicentennial page and also Dr. Hoopingarner's book Revisiting The Hive and The Honey Bee (1862 edition) 

Jim Tew compares reading frames and reading colonies, “at best an uncertain skill.”
Read specific case studies given by Dr. Tew and how reading them provided clues about what to do.  Like so much in beekeeping, the activity is not foolproof.

Dan Stiles is looking for a come back of the American chestnut.  The root of this could be crossing the American and Chinese chestnut, being promoted by the American Chestnut Foundation.  Read how Mr. Stiles was lucky enough to receive five (5) “Restoration Chestnut” seeds.  He wonders what the honey from these plants might taste like?

Ross Conrad reflects on beekeeping in the northeast region, “nine states, diverse in many ways, and similar, too.”  Read about the use of “bee tea” and the newest growing problem in the region, an animal with four legs and an omnivorous diet,  which includes succulent brood and honey.

Buddy Marterre and Alice Varon describe the certification process for honey developed by certified naturally grown. Read why this exciting initiative should be inspiring to those choosing to use more natural methods in their beekeeping.  This is the only initiative I have seen concerning certifying and marketing organic honey.

K. Rudy Blume takes us on a journey to build and manage a top bar hive.  Read this history of becoming an alternative beekeeper and what it means both the honey bees and beekeeper.

Abbas Edun continues his series on natural remedies.  This month read about southern  prickly ash, alexanders, and alder buckthorn.

Ann Harman takes a trip on a flying carpet around the world to visit some beekeeper operations. She is careful not to identify these folks specifically, especially the one who employs a treatment made with coumaphos powder!  Read a description  of how to build a watering device from an IV drip line and lumber.

Bob Mauer looks forward to the 79th National Honey Show in London, October  28-30
In All the News That Fits, read about the 2010 Philadelpia Honey Festival, obituary of legendary Huck Babcock, training California beekeepers, research on the bee's working day, a “barge over troubled water,” and UK study of pesticides and the bee's  brain.  Finally, see reports on honey bees and MRSA and installing hives atop the Nob Hill, San Francisco (Fairmont Hotel).

Finally, in the bottom board, Ed Colby indeed celebrates life as a “gift.”  Read how he literally came back from the dead as a victim of an Aspen, CO snow avalanche.

Malcolm T. Sanford

Bee sure to subscribe to Catch the Buzz, Bee Culture's latest releases of importance to beekeepers.  Also access the Apis Information Resource Center , which contains archived articles, listing of  posts on blogs, web sites, and links to related materials.  .

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

CATCH THE BUZZ - GM Sugar Beet Seed Suspended


Sugar Beet Sugar Not So Sweet…

By Scott Kilman

A federal judge's decision Friday to undo the government's five-year-old approval of genetically modified sugar beets, from which roughly half of U.S. sugar is derived, won't disrupt supplies for at least a year, but could pose headaches for food companies after that.

The order by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey S. White—who had concluded in September 2009 that the U.S. Department of Agriculture hadn't lived up to its obligation to fully consider whether the weedkiller-tolerant sugar beets might harm the environment—effectively blocks farmers from planting the seed next spring, but leaves alone the crop already in the ground, which can be harvested this fall, processed and sold as sugar.

"In the short term, at least, we're aren't going to see any disruption in the marketing of this year's crop," said Luther Markwart, executive vice president of the American Sugarbeet Growers Association, a Washington, D.C., trade group.

However food companies that depend on a steady supply of U.S. sugar face uncertainty over where they will source their sugar beets after next year.

It is far from clear how soon U.S. sugar-beet farmers can return to planting the seeds, which are genetically modified the same way as the vast majority of the corn, soybeans and cotton grown in the U.S. The plants are genetically modified with Monsanto Co. genes that give them immunity to glyphosate-based herbicide, which the St. Louis biotechnology company sells as Roundup weedkiller.

The Roundup-resistant trait is popular with many farmers—it is present in 95% of the sugar-beet plants grown in the U.S.—because it enables them to chemically weed their fields without harming their crops, saving time and the expense of mechanical cultivation.

Monsanto licenses several sugar-beet seed companies to use its herbicide-tolerance gene in their breeding programs. The business isn't big enough to be material to the company's financial results.

The lawsuit against the USDA was filed by activist groups including the Center for Food Safety and the Sierra Club, among others. Biotechnology critics worry that the transplanted gene could spread to conventional sugar-beet plants through cross-pollination, and that the herbicide-tolerance trait permits a heavy enough use of Roundup to spur the evolution of weeds that can survive glyphosate, the active ingredient in the weedkiller.

Glyphosate-tolerant weeds are already appearing in southeast U.S. farm fields where farmers have long grown Roundup-tolerant cotton and soybeans.

Sugar-beet industry officials say it would be difficult for U.S. farmers to quickly switch back to non-genetically modified seed. Some farmers have already sold off their cultivation equipment—which kills weeds by digging into the dirt—and it isn't clear how much conventional seed is available anymore.

Genetically modified sugar-beet seed won't be legal to plant again until the Agriculture Department repeats its regulatory review process. Sugar-industry officials widely expect the USDA's biotechnology regulators—who are charged with protecting U.S. agriculture from plant pests—to come to the same conclusion and eventually re-clear the seed for planting. But getting there again will include the time-consuming process of writing the environmental-impact statement ordered by Judge White, who sits in San Francisco.

The draft environmental-impact statement that the USDA published in December on Roundup–tolerant alfalfa, for example, ran to about 1,500 pages. The USDA has estimated that completing an environmental-impact statement on Roundup-tolerant sugar beets could easily take until April 2012.

Sugar-industry officials say they believe the USDA has the authority to implement interim measures to permit some planting of the genetically modified sugar beets. A USDA spokesman said the agency was "reviewing the judge's order in order to determine appropriate next steps."

Find out What’s New At Mann Lake right Here


 Protein feeding pays off with better bee health, better survival, better production, and better wintering.  Learn More.

 Subscribe to Malcolm Sanford’s Apis Newsletter right here For a comprehensive listing of beekeeping events around the country and around the globe, check out Bee Culture’s Global Beekeeping Calendar

Check out the Biggest Honey Show there is this fall at

 This message brought to you by Bee Culture, The Magazine Of American Beekeeping, published by the A.I. Root Company.



Monday, 16 August 2010

CATCH THE BUZZ - Latest From Project Apism


Bee Box July/August 2010 , From ProjectApis m

Christi Heintz and Meg Ribotto


The relationship between the almond grower and the beekeeper is just as important as the symbiotic connection between the almond flower and the honey bee.  The flower and the bee enjoy a cooperative, mutually beneficial rapport.  The honey bee needs the pollen and nectar from flowers for food and sustenance and the flower needs the honey bee for pollination and reproduction.  They need each other.  The grower is dependent on the beekeeper to deliver healthy colonies for the almond bloom.  To ensure this mutual relationship, let us look at so me ways that almond growers can help beekeepers in the pollination process of their crops.


Nutrition.  Scientists have emphasized that malnutrition may be playing a key role in the decline of colonies due to Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD).  Bees can suffer from a compromised immune system related to poor nutrition.  It’s summer now and bees are pollinating other crops or perhaps making honey from sweet clover or other forage.  But come late summer and fall, and certainly before almond bloom in February and March, forage is limited.  Growers could help by planting a flowering plant within younger orchards, o n the perimeter of fields and orchards, or on land that they are not utilizing for agricultural production.  Depending on location and time of year, mustard or vetch are examples of possible cover crops beneficial to bees.  Before and after almond bloom, California can seem like desert to honey bees.   Nutrition is vital.      


Water.  Just as important as food, and somewhat underplayed, is water.  When honey bees are placed within your orchard, work with your beekeeper on identifying a potable water source for the bees to avoid dehydration.   Also consider that pesticides, fungicides and fertilizer may drift into a water source, so locate or provide easily-accessible clean water.     


Hive placement within the orchard.  Growers should be cognoscente in providing a place for the colonies which is mutually agreeable to both the grower and the beekeeper.  The distribution of the hives should be convenient and accessible at all hours to the beekeeper and their vehicles for placement, servicing and removal of hives.  Orchard roads should be maintained and routinely graded for easy access.  If your orchard is difficult to get into, beekeepers may charge you more.  Allow for hive placement in areas not p rone to flooding or shade.  Eastern and southern exposures are better for morning sun and warmer temperatures so bees will fly sooner in the day.  Lastly, let nature do her part with minimum interruption.  Allow hive placement that limits human and honey bee interaction.    


Fungicide applications.  Growers need to protect their crop while at the same time keeping in mind the health of the honey bee that is doing the pollinating work.  Let your beekeeper know when you are spraying and the products you are using.  Honey bees come in contact with agricultural sprays in different ways.  They may fly through the fungicide, the fungicide may drift to the hives, or bees may collect and bring into the hive pollen that contains fungicide residue.  If possible, spray when bees are not flying or when pol len is not being produced by the tree.  Later in the day and at night are best for applying fungicides while still considering exposure to honey bees.  


Pollination contracts.  While the honey bee and the almond flower have an unspoken agreement, it is best that the grower and the beekeeper have a written contract.  Growers should line up contracts early for the following year.  Beekeepers who know they have a solid almond pollination contract in hand will be more likely to invest money in the supplemental feed necessary to insure strong colonies for the early almond pollination season.  When the colonies arrive at almond bloom, make sure you are getting what you contracted for.  Eight frames or better is optimum.   Consider an objective third party inspection, and then give your beek eeper a reasonable window to provide additional colonies, if needed.   Walk the orchards during favorable flight hours and weather and make sure you see plenty of bee activity, including numerous bees coming and going from the hive entrances.  Note and report on any inactive hives. 


Visit Project Apis m.’s website at  Under Downloads you will find a pollination contract template. Your crop is important and pollinating your crop is important.  The honey bee and the almond flower, by nature, already have it all figured out.  These few simple guidelines above can improve your relationship with your beekeeper, your pollination potential, and your crop. 


Christi Heintz and Meg Ribotto are with Project Apis m. a non-profit bee research organization.  Should you have comments on this article or suggestions for other management practices for growers renting bees, please contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .  

Find out What’s New At Mann Lake right Here

 Protein feeding pays off with better bee health, better survival, better production, and better wintering.  Learn More.

 Subscribe to Malcolm Sanford’s Apis Newsletter right here For a comprehensive listing of beekeeping events around the country and around the globe, check out Bee Culture’s Global Beekeeping Calendar

 This message brought to you by Bee Culture, The Magazine Of American Beekeeping, published by the A.I. Root Company.


Friday, 13 August 2010

Central Beekeepers Alliance : Central Beekeepers at FREX in September

Central Beekeepers Alliance : Central Beekeepers at FREX in September

Central Beekeepers at FREX in September

Posted: 12 Aug 2010 04:10 PM PDT

There will be no monthly meeting of the Central Beekeepers Alliance in September, as members will be manning the booth at the Fredericton Exhibition during the first week of the month.

Want to learn more about honeybees and beekeeping?

Come along to the FREX and meet some of central New Brunswick’s beekeepers, stock up on local honey and hive products, and see if you can “spot the queen” in the observation hive of live bees that’s part of our Exhibition display!

Central Beekeepers at FREX in September was written and published by the Central Beekeepers Alliance - Honey Bees & Beekeeping in New Brunswick, Canada. For more information, please visit

Thursday, 12 August 2010

CATCH THE BUZZ - Chinese Honey Crooks Caught




Chinese Honey Laundered In US Finally Caught


By Ron Phipps, CPNA International


August 10, 2010

This past week there were a few significant developments regarding circumvention of honey. These developments lend support to the current legislative efforts in the U.S. Senate and Congress generally to stop the laundering of Chinese honey through third countries. This past week the confession of a Taiwanese man in Los Angeles was reported by the United States District Court-Northern District of Illinois. The Taiwan confessed to shipping Chinese honey (50 containers) to India and other containers to Thailand, South Korea and Taiwan for transshipment to the USA to avoid paying high anti-dumping duties. He also confessed to adulterating Chinese honey with sugars in a Taiwanese factory in order to “increase profit margins.”

Secondly, a Chinese apiculture scientist openly claimed in an academic article that “A few Chinese honey exporters had to ship Chinese honey through India or Malaysia to avoid high U.S. duties.” The problem of circumvention is gaining national and international attention.

Find out What’s New At Mann Lake right Here

 Protein feeding pays off with better bee health, better survival, better production, and better wintering.  Learn More.

 Subscribe to Malcolm Sanford’s Apis Newsletter right here For a comprehensive listing of beekeeping events around the country and around the globe, check out Bee Culture’s Global Beekeeping Calendar

 This message brought to you by Bee Culture, The Magazine Of American Beekeeping, published by the A.I. Root Company.


Wednesday, 11 August 2010






 Philadelphia has a long history of “firsts” – from the first hospital to the first zoo to the discovery of electricity, innovations of all kinds have happened here. Beekeepers across the city and the United States are buzzing away, preparing to celebrate another Philadelphia “first”– the invention of the movable frame bee hive. December 2010 marks the 200th birthday of Philadelphian Lorenzo L. Langstroth, “The Father of American Beekeeping,” and inventor of the hive that changed the future of apiculture forever. To celebrate his birthday, four Philadelphia organizations have teamed up to present the Philadelphia Honey Festival on the weekend of September 10-12, 2010. The coordinating partners are the Wagner Free Institute of Science, Philadelphia Beekeepers G uild, Bartram’s Garden and The Wyck Association, organizations invested in educating the public about natural science.

 The festivities will kick off with the placement of a historical marker at 106 South Front Street, the house where Langstroth was born. The marker placement will be on Friday, September 10th at 3:30 PM, MC’d by Kim Flottum, Editor of Bee Culture Magazine, and one of the event’s sponsors, and includes a keynote address from Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture, Russell Redding, an appearance by the Pennsylvania Honey Queen, and will conclude with the viewing of Langstroth’s papers at the American Philosophical Society. 

 There will be something for everyone at the festival, the three anchor sites, Wagner Institute, Bartram’s Garden and The Wyck Association will be buzzing with events on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

 What better place to celebrate the importance of bees than right on the banks of the Schuylkill River at the birthplace of American botany? Bartram’s Garden is the landmark home and garden of America’s pioneering family of naturalists, botanists and explorers. During the Honey Festival this Southwest Philadelphia site will appeal to those interested in the history of beekeeping, and the aesthetic inspiration these important pollinators provide. On Friday, Bartram’s Garden will host the opening of the DaVinci Art Alliance exhibition aptly titled “What’s the Buzz,” from 5 – 8 PM. On Saturday, September 11th, and Sunday, September 12th, the Garden will be open all day, for botanical illustration meetups and house tours. History buffs should not miss the lecture, History of American Bee Keeping 17 76-1810 on Sunday afternoon at 1 PM, presented by Professor William Butler. His lecture will be followed by a curator’s talk, Bees in Art, presented by Dr. Debra Miller of DaVinci Art Alliance.

For those interested in starting their own apiary, Historic Wyck is the place to be! This remarkable Germantown site has been a home and a working farm for more than 250 years, and features a nationally-known garden of old roses (over 30 varieties), originally planted in the 1820s. Wyck will host three well-known beekeeping authorities on Saturday from 12-4. Kim Flottum, editor of Bee Culture Magazine, will discuss the Joys of Urban Beekeeping. Elizabeth Capaldi Evans, Professor of Biology at Bucknell University and author of the book, Why do Bees Buzz? Fascinating Answers to Questions about Bees will discuss her work on bee behavior. Dean Stiglitz, author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Beekeeping will talk about Natural Beekeeping. Also, Historian Matt Redmon will do a short presentation about Lorenzo Langstrot h, Philadelphia’s own inventor of the modern beehive. Honey extractions and hive demonstrations will also be happening throughout the day. Food will be available for purchase, as well as honey from local beekeepers and honey and wax related products from a number of vendors.

 The Wagner Free Institute of Science will be the Honey Fest host for children and their families. This Victorian natural history museum located in North Philadelphia, has been dedicated to providing free science education to the public for over 150 years. Children make up 1/3 of the museum’s annual audience, and the Honey Festival will kick off the Institute’s 2010-11 season of Saturday Family Programs. Open from 12 – 4 PM on Saturday, September 11th, the afternoon will feature “Pollinator Power!” a lesson for children ages 6-12 about the importance of pollinators in our lives. Sip honey-sweetened iced tea, and listen to local folk rocker, Liam Gallagher, while you peruse goods from local booksellers, bee artists and beekeepers. Beeswax candle-making, free Häagen-Dazs ice cream treats, scavenger hunts, and the debut of the Institute’s new native pollinator garden will sweeten the day for all who attend. 

 The goal of the Philadelphia Honey Festival is to raise awareness about the importance of bees to our environment, the impact of local honey on our economy, and to promote urban beekeeping and gardening. All festival events are free. Some events require reservations, please see attached schedule for more details.

 For more information: