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1.31.2013

EUROPEAN COMMISSION STEPS UP FOR THE BEES

"The European Commission has proposed that member states restrict the use of certain classes of pesticide that are believed to be harmful to bees."

"Three pesticides would be affected -clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiametoxam. Farmers would be banned from using them with sunflowers, oilseed rape, cotton and maize.
Commission spokesman Frederic Vincent told BBC News the measure was based on the latest scientific advice.
"We have requested a proper scientific assessment of neonicotinoids from Efsa. They came up with some concerns, some kind of worrying assessment. So now we are saying to members we have some scientific evidence that there are some concerns from those pesticides and the effects they might have on bees," he said.
The Commission wants restrictions in place by July and the measures will be reviewed after two years. There are already bans in place in France, Germany and Slovenia."

read the full article here:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-21277933

1.29.2013

The Queens Gather

Spring Dawns and the Queens Gather 
 
Spring Dawns and the Queens Gather  
their ladies together
to discuss matters of importance
and share nectar of the garden,
review the newly birthed 
and up and coming daughters...
A Queen's work is never done and 
she is as  ever busy as her ladies
the world does not wait, nor do her children
Nectar flows soon with warmer weather
Trading garden secrets and sharing flower stories,
admiring blooms on the street where you pass unaware of 
the serious business that appears as play between them all.
To ensure that the tables will be filled
 and the community will continue...
The Queens Gather.
©2013 Carrie Lee Pierson Schwartz All rights reserved.
 

 

1.27.2013

Coffee, Tea, Chocolate and Bees

Yes, If you like Chocolate, Coffee and Tea,
you need to be concerned about the health of Honeybees.
They make all three and much,  much,  more possible.
"

“Every single person on our planet has a diet that includes food made possible by pollinating insects. When this connection is threatened, all of humanity is threatened.”

—Dino Martins" 
Listen to  entomologist Dino Martins in this TED talk 


 Find out more about his works at
 http://www.nationalgeographic.com/explorers/bios/dino-martins/

1.22.2013

First Hive Check of The New Year



Yesterday, I finally had some time 
and the weather cleared so that I could 
check on my hives, Love and Grace. 

 They both had some honey, which tasted bitter, 
and they both had brood in their combs.
 not much , but enough.
 I found a few  hives beetles on the outside, 
but not much evidence on the inside..
 I did find some remnants of the  "Count of Minty- Crisco" sweet grease pattis that I had placed last year as mite repellants.  the exterior of the hive at the top of the telescoping covers were also still lubricated from where I sprayed last year to keep the beetles away.
 So I did not loose these to the winter, which is  a great relief.
They are greatly reduced in numbers, 
and so I took out some of the burr comb and  
cleaned up the propolis and left them with  a tiny powdered sugar bath
The newly rescued cat,  was on hand to help.
That is a bee on the bridge of his nose in between his eyes.

1.20.2013

Queen Bees, Crumb horns and Bag Pipes


Queen bees Sing- It is called "Piping" - I guess because they sound like they are tooting their own horns!
Here are three  videos that you can play to hear what newly hatched virgin queens sound like.
The young Bee Queens  do this right after they hatch out and before mating with the drones.
 If you can sound like a queen. you can catch her and the whole hive!! since she will seek out the older queen to destroy her!
Listen! Then listen to the Crumbhorns and Pipes  played below...





Here is one on the comb



If I could play a crumbhorn, I might could catch a Queen and her ladies!


or perhaps  a bagpipe??

Funny and Frank Video for Wanna Bee Keepers


1.09.2013

Rose -Lynn Fisher's Photos of Bees are Amazing


"Rose-Lynn Fisher’s fine-art photography explores microscopic, cultural, and metaphorical thresholds."
The black and white images help you to focus on the forms.
 Truly amazing photographic work. Below are a few small examples 
Please click on her website to see more. 

Eye-Dome by Rose-Lynn Fisher
http://www.rose-lynnfisher.com/beepage.html 
Bees Knees by Rose-Lynn Fisher
http://www.rose-lynnfisher.com/beepage.html
Wing to Body by Rose-Lynn Fischer
http://www.rose-lynnfisher.com/beepage.html

1.04.2013

Bees as Dangerous Substance Detectors

Getty Images of Bees in Cassettes



Domestic honeybees, Apis mellifera, have olfactory senses capable of detecting
specific volatile organic compounds (VOC) in air at levels as low as parts per billion
(ppb). This ability can be harnessed as a biological sensor to detect VOC’s of particular interest, as has traditionally been done with specially-trained dogs. Unlike
dogs, however, the honeybee can be trained to respond to a particular scent
within hours, is inexpensive to reproduce and maintain, and may be harnessed to
operate autonomously.
Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) began working with
domestic honeybees in 2006 to detect explosive materials and narcotics. The
honeybees, harnessed in a cassette, are trained to extend their proboscis in the
presence of the VOC of interest; this physical response is then detected by electronics monitoring the “bee cassette,” and the operator is alerted to presence of
the material. "

1.01.2013

Activity in Love and Grace's Hive this Winter

Both Love and Grace's Hives have been very quiet this Winter
with the exception of seeing bees foraging on the camellias.
After much cold and freezing weather, a warming trend
brought out the bees, they circled in front of the hives
 I assume in cleaning flights,
while a very few foraged onward.

Hive activity- with  cleansing flights after many days of cold weather,
a warming trend and rain in the forecast, the hive is very active  as the sun rises

Camellia Japonica " Seafoam"  blooms now

More Bees on Blooms in the New Year

Two Honeybees foraging on Toki-No-Hagasane
Tea Tree Camellia Sinensis Budding
The Bloom opens on Tea Tree Camellia Sinensis

Bee College in Grenada this January