Bees for Development Journal Edition 113 - December 2014

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Bees for Development




20 1993

YEARS 2013

Bees for Development Journal 113

In this issue page Practical beekeeping – bee poisoning...........................................3 Varroa destructor resistance to miticides in the Middle East................5 Warriors become beekeepers.............6 Trees Bees Use...................................7 First Apimondia Symposium on African Bees & Beekeeping.................8 Bees for Development Workshop in Arusha...............................................9 ApiTrade Africa in Zimbabwe.............10 Look Ahead / Learn Ahead................11 News around the World....................12 Notice Board.....................................13 Bookshelf.........................................14 ADVERTISE IN BfDJ A great opportunity to reach thousands of our readers. Various size ads available. See advertising. COPYRIGHT You are welcome to translate and/or reproduce items appearing in BfDJ as part of our Information Service. Permission is given on the understanding that BfDJ and author(s) are acknowledged, BfD contact details are provided in full, and you send us a copy of the item or the website address where it is used.

DEAR FRIENDS Bruegel’s Mirror Artist Laurence Smith lives in Cornwall in the south-west of England, and earlier this year held an exhibition at the Royal Cornwall Museum entitled Bruegel’s Mirror. Pieter Bruegel was a 16th century Flemish painter and printmaker, famous for his rural landscapes capturing images of people at work. Laurence has painted in oils, a number of Bruegel’s drawings and engraved designs in the hope that by enlarging them and painting them in Bruegel’s colours, these extraordinary graphic works will become better known and more accessible. Laurence explains “The Beekeepers is a pen and ink drawing dated 1567–8. Inscribed in Flemish in the left corner are the words: He who knows where the nest is has the knowledge; he who robs it has the nest.” This is one of Bruegel’s most enigmatic drawings. One interpretation suggests that the bee hives represent the Catholic parish churches that were raided by Protestant iconoclasts in 1566. Many churches (skeps) in Flanders were emptied of their clergy (bees) and their contents (honey). Laurence’s painting of The Beekeepers is for sale. He has generously pledged to donate £500 to Bees for Development Trust upon its sale (the price is £700). The painting measures 75 x 62 cm. If you would like more information about purchasing, please contact BfD Trust. A friend of Laurence, Martin Buckle, is a well-known skep maker. Martin has made a 16th century bee hood and wicker mask as used by the beekeepers drawn by Pieter Bruegel. Martin reports that he can see through the mask very well and it keeps away the bees! For more information on the Bruegel’s Mirror exhibition see Martin Buckle in woven beekeeping mask


BfD Journal Produced quarterly and sent to readers in over 130 countries Editor Nicola Bradbear PhD Co-ordinator Helen Jackson BSc Subscriptions cost £26 per year - see page 15 for ways to pay Readers in developing countries may apply for a sponsored subscription. Apply online or use the form on page 16 BfD Trust (UK Registered Charity1078803) works to assist beekeepers in developing countries.

Bees for Development Post 1 Agincourt Street Monmouth NP25 3DZ, UK Phone +44 (0)1600 714848


Issue No 113 DECEMBER 2014

The Beekeepers by Laurence Smith Support: Bees for Development Trust gratefully acknowledge Marr Manning Trust, E H Thorne (Beehives) Ltd, Size of Wales, The Waterloo Foundation, and the many groups and individuals who support our work. Please encourage your friends and colleagues to help. See our website for how to become a Supporter.


Bees for Development Journal 113



POISONING BY PESTICIDES Wolfgang Ritter, OIE Reference Laboratory at CVUA Freiburg, Am Moosweiher 2, D79108 Freiburg, Germany PHOTO © A SPÜRGIN

Keywords: contamination, evidence, poisoning

What to do? When crawling or dead bees are suddenly found at the apiary or when there are changes in the brood, poisoning may be the reason. Good Beekeeping Practice requires immediate action to preserve the evidence. Immediate action is the only chance to identify the reason and to reduce the damage. Possible reasons for intoxication could be: • the application of pesticides in agriculture, horticulture and forestry • the malicious, criminal poisoning of bees • nectar absorption from certain forage plants.

Evaluation of indicators There are various indicators of intoxication: • increased numbers of dead bees • disturbance and biting attacks at the hive entrance • strong and sudden decrease of flight activity • changes, damage or gaps in the brood pattern • slow development of the colonies (this is mainly in cases of chronic intoxication).

Beekeepers registered with the authorities are warned to protect their colonies before pesticide applications take place confirmed, or intoxication cannot be excluded, the authority for plant protection or any other competent institution should be involved. Often their representatives are authorised to enter agricultural ground to take plant samples. These officials know the plant protection measures recommended by the district agricultural office.

The symptoms of poisoning cannot always be readily distinguished from symptoms of disease. Sometimes they are caused by the natural death of old bees. Moreover, symptoms of less common diseases can be confused with intoxication. Misinterpretation can happen when neighbouring apiaries have been poisoned and your own colonies consequently appear the same.

Preserving evidence In cases of poisoning relevant samples often have to be rejected by the institutions charged with the examination, either because of insufficient quantity of material, because the material has decayed already, or because animal and plant material were not separated properly – prohibiting the collection of evidence that is adequate to show to an insurance company or to be presented in court.

First legal opinion In many states of Germany the veterinary authorities, represented by the official bee expert, are required to give the first legal opinion. In all cases it is necessary to call an independent witness, for example a member of your beekeeping association, but never a relative. If no independent person can be reached, the police should be involved. As soon as the suspicion of poisoning is PHOTO © J SCHWENKEL

How to take samples and how to forward them correctly is described under How to do (overleaf). In Germany it is obligatory to observe these recommendations.

Action before the official result You should decide whether to stay at the location with the remaining colonies, or to move them to another place, at least for some time. As soon as the means of evidence are preserved and the scope of damage is defined, you can start cleaning. It is preferable to burn dead bees and combs. But be careful with the remaining material: it may be used again only after poisoning has been definitely excluded. Until then, the best way is to decide – with the opinion of an expert – what might be contaminated.

Action after the official result As soon as poisoning is officially confirmed, the contaminated material has to be destroyed. The hives may be concerned as well. Wood should be burnt. Other materials, for example plastic hives, have to be disposed of as hazardous waste without further risk for bees. If the responsible party is identified, you can take legal steps according to civil law and claim compensation. If you are insured against such damage, contact the insurance company which will eventually recover from the person(s) responsible.

The grass at the entrances of hives should be kept short, to make it easy to recognise serious death of bees 3



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If the bees in front of the hive are soaked by rain or dew or already decayed, it is recommended to take samples from the bottom of the hive

A sample of bees boxed and ready for dispatch for analysis

Avoiding intoxication

Storage and packing

In some cases, you can protect bees against poisoning by avoiding particular crops. Registered beekeepers or those who inform the official bee expert about the actual location of their hives can be warned before a pesticide application takes place. It is also advantageous to contact the farmers directly. If at a certain place poisoning occurs repeatedly, and if the reason cannot be found, it is better not to use it anymore. Other beekeepers should be informed, to protect them from similar negative experiences.

Many substances decompose quickly and therefore cannot be identified during examination:

How to do

• If the samples will reach their destination within one day, plastic bags can be used.

• Samples should be taken immediately after the damage has occurred. • Decayed material is mostly useless for testing. • In case of delayed forwarding (non-work days) the samples must be stored in a fridge.

Registration of damage

• In case of longer transport time, the samples have to be packed in airtight packing material of paper or cardboard first and then in plastic bags.

The bee expert in charge states the damage: • Number of affected colonies. • Estimated number of dead bees. • Scope of damage to the individual colonies (remaining strength, overwintering capacity, foraging ability). • Photographs of damage (very important!). • Gathering information from neighbouring apiaries. • Completed papers provided by the competent authority.

• To maintain the cold temperature as long as possible, two thermal packs per package should be used. Checklist for Good Beekeeping Practice



Only fresh sample material is taken and as quickly as possible

Taking samples

Samples are always kept cool

• At least 1,000 bees, that is 100 g (about 0.5 litre) are necessary for chemical analysis. • If possible, only bees that have just died or starving bees should be gathered. • Bees with pollen loads should be stored separately, because they can eventually give a hint of the crop they had visited. • The plant protection official gathers plant material of at least 100 g from the area under suspicion. • If several areas are concerned, plant samples have to be separated. • Bee and plant samples must be always stored and packed separately, because only then can clear evidence be preserved. • Always put on an unused pair of single-wear gloves when a new sample is taken, or thoroughly clean hands with soap to avoid the spread of substances from one sample to another.

Bee and plant samples are always stored and packed separately Dead bees and combs of dead colonies are always burnt In case of poisoning, contaminated materials are decontaminated or destroyed Critical plant crops are avoided, if possible The location of hives are known to the official bee expert and/or the authorities BfD acknowledges as the original source of this article.


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VARROA DESTRUCTOR RESISTANCE TO MITICIDES IN THE MIDDLE EAST Reza Shahrouzi, International Counsellor for Agriculture & Apiculture, PO Box 34185-451, Qazvin, Iran Amir Mohammad Elmi, Department of Environment Wildlife Bureau, Tehran, Iran Abbas Gerami Sadeghian, Department of Parasitology, Veterinary Medicine Faculty of Tehran, Iran Keywords: Afghanistan, Apis mellifera, Azerbaijan, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Kurdistan, Pakistan, pyrethroids, Tajikistan, Turkey, Yemen

measures, it is now evident that acaricides such as fluvalinate (Lodesani et al, 1992) accumulate in beeswax, creating conditions for prolonged contact with Varroa, especially inside the brood cells where they reproduce. The ineffectiveness of fluvalinate has been reported in France, Italy and Iran (Faucon 1994; Milani 1995; Shahrouzi 1998). The use of this chemical for Varroa control became widespread because it is easy to apply and relatively cheap. However, the use of Apistan® and Apivar® has often been replaced by wooden strips impregnated with the same active ingredient, made by the beekeepers themselves using Klartan and Mavrik (containing fluvalinate) and Taktic (containing amitraz) that are not authorised for use in beekeeping, and difficulties with dosage have led to loss of effectiveness. Resistance to other acaricides, belonging to different groups of chemicals, has been also reported. Resistance to bromopropylate and chlordimeform was shown to be favoured by under dosing and this has been verified in laboratory tests (Ritter & Roth 1988). The presence in different countries of Varroa destructor populations simultaneously resistant to different pyrethroids highlight the risks of basing control strategies purely on chemical treatment, particularly when the substances used belong to the same chemical family.

The Middle East encompasses the majority of western Asia (excluding the Caucasus) and Egypt. The climate is hot and arid. Several major rivers provide irrigation to support agriculture in limited areas, especially in Mesopotamia and the rest of the Fertile Crescent.

History Books on bees were written in Roman times, and beekeeping was known in the Middle East centuries before the advent of Islam. By 5,000 BC the people of Iran and Iraq understood the need for pollination of date palms. Everywhere bees nest in old trees, holes in rocks and caves. Honey is harvested from these wild colonies. Beekeeping using localstyle hives - baked clay, tree trunk, and basket (made from willow branches covered with cow dung to seal) – is practised across the region. In the last 50 years the use of frame hives has increased. Four countries of the Middle East have over a million bee colonies: Country

Number of colonies









Conclusion After three decades of experience in the Middle East using different treatments against Varroa, I feel that efficacy depends upon local conditions and that care is needed when using these products. The optimal conditions are a high and stable external temperature and the absence of worker brood. The main precautions consist of preventing re-infestation and robbing by treating outside periods of nectar flow or queen rearing, and by checking the effectiveness of the treatment.

Varroa Varroa destructor, first recorded in the Middle East in the 1970s, is still considered a leading cause of death of Apis mellifera honey bee colonies. Research has developed several products that received market authorisation in most countries of the region. The Ministries of Agriculture have undertaken substantial expenditure purchasing different anti-Varroa products to test their effectiveness.

The alternative to chemical control needs more than just using a plant extract in place of synthetic acaricide. It is likely that Varroa destructor will still remain for several years as one of the agents for weakening colonies. However it is necessary that we learn to live with it, by identifying and preserving surviving colonies in the apiaries. This may require additional effort and time by beekeepers to look after their bees.

Since 2008 products have been sold on the black market without veterinary authorisation. In Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Iraq, Kurdistan, Pakistan and Tajikistan, beekeepers have reported serious problems with the illegal substances including death of colonies. Some flumethrin and fluvalinate products have the same active ingredient of pyrethroids as proprietary products.

If treatment is to be used, the first application must be carried out in late September or early October. To give overwintering bees the optimum potential for survival, it must be sufficiently effective to ensure that at the end of the treatment there will be fewer than 50 parasites in treated colonies. If colonies are located in an area conducive to the rearing of brood - potential source of development for the mite – a second treatment may be carried out in early spring.

Resistance Varroa mite resistance to miticides is well known and documented. The first cases of resistance to organophosphates were reported in 1947 (Delome & Dacol, 1989), and since 1996 there has been development of resistance to the pyrethroids flumethrin and fluvalinate. Varroa develops resistance to chemicals used in control strategies as a result of prolonged exposure to the acaricide. This is especially true for mites with short life cycles, such as Varroa destructor which has twelve generations per year. This is one of the reasons that manufacturers of products advise users to limit the frequency and period of application. Despite precautionary

For references see

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WARRIORS BECOME BEEKEEPERS IN KARAMOJA, UGANDA Janet Lowore from Bees for Development interviewed Dinah Nayor of Moroto, Karamoja during the 4th ApiTrade Africa Event that was held in October in Harare, Zimbabwe. JL Tell me how you started working with beekeeping for development DN Before my current job I worked as a Field Assistant for the community-based organisation MADEFO. My role was to help reformed warriors from among the Karamajong tribes to find alternative livelihoods and one of these was beekeeping.

DN Yes. We have a Memorandum of Understanding with the honey company Golden Bees. They are providing us with technical advice and they will buy our honey. Currently honey is sold in local markets by the individual spoonful, and is bought also by traders. Honey harvested in Karita sub-country tends to be sold across the border to Kenya.

JL Please explain what you mean by reformed warriors?

JL What do you hope for in the future?

DN The Karamajong people are first and foremost cattle owners. They are accustomed also to carrying weapons – especially guns – and highway robbery and cattle raiding have formed part of their way of life. The Government of Uganda has worked hard in recent years to encourage them to give up their guns and find alternative sources of income.

DN I hope the community members will increase their number of hives and consequently increase their sales. When I was working for MADEFO, I saw people able to pay school fees using money earned from selling honey. We want also to introduce saving schemes so that the income earned can be used wisely throughout the year.

JL How has this been achieved?

JL Is Karamoja a dangerous place for visitors (as I have been told)?

DN When I worked for MADEFO we introduced a slogan: Turn a cow into a hive, turn milk into honey! The objective was to strengthen the honey economy and help the communities to improve their honey sales and to add to their income by selling other bee products.

DN Not any more. It is a peaceful place!


JL Thank you Dinah.

JL Is beekeeping new to these communities? DN No it is not. Some tribes are famous as honey producers, for example the Tepeth and the Ike. They use honey as a bride price and for ceremonial purposes and value bees more than cattle. This is partly because they live in the mountains where there is less grazing land. Other tribes practise beekeeping but to a lesser extent and now we are working to increase it. JL Please explain your current role. DN I am working for ACDI/VOCA as a Honey Support Officer. My job is to identify existing beekeepers who have good knowledge but have not been trained in improved methods. We form them into groups of 20 and give each beekeeper a hive, a smoker, a pair of boots and some other basic beekeeping equipment. We provide training: firstly in apiary siting, basic knowledge and then hive inspection. November 2014 will be our first honey harvest within this project and we will train the groups in how to harvest honey to maintain quality. Our current target group is 650 men and women. JL You mentioned these are existing beekeepers – what methods do they currently use? DN They have local styles of hives which they place in trees. We are showing them that they can keep bees in apiaries down from the trees. The problem is that not everyone can climb trees and by demonstrating that bees can be kept in hives at ground level we can attract women to take up beekeeping. JL What problems have you faced? DN The honey badger raids hives. We tackled this problem by seeking advice from our technical mentor. We have been advised to hang the hives by wires in such a way that if a badger climbs on to the hive, the hive tips and the badger falls off. We deter ants by putting ash around the hive stands. Dinah Nayor

JL Do you have a marketing plan? 6

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PARINARI EXCELSEA Reinhard Fichtl, Weissgerbergraben 5, 93047 Regensburg, Germany

Apicultural value Honey bees frequently visit the flowers for pollen and nectar. Parinari excelsea flowers during the very dry season and therefore is an extremely valuable tree for bees. Recommended for planting to increase honey production

Family Chrysobalanaceae


Parinari excelsea

Grey Plum, Gingerbread Plum, Guinea Plum

Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, The Gambia, Uganda, Togo, Tanzania and Zambia. In Africa it occurs in nearly all forest types of the Guineo-Congolian region, on the mountains of East Africa and in the northern part of the Zambezian region.

Description An evergreen tree growing up to 35 m high and over 4 m in girth in humid rain-forest. Not so tall in Guinean forest reaching only 8 m high in areas of open (often riverine) woodlands, with a thick rounded or flatly-spreading crown. Bark: Grey: brown, rough, finely and often long-fissured. Leaves: narrowly elliptic or lanceolate-elliptic, dark green and glabrous and sometimes shiny above. Flower: arranged in triflorous cymes, with white ovate petals. Flowering trees are found from July to October (in Zambia). Fruit: an ellipsoid to nearly globose drupe, warty, yellowish to reddish brown when ripe. Pulp fleshy and yellowish.

Also in Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela.

Practical notes • Fast growing. • Propagation by wildlings and root suckers. • Sometimes Parinari excelsea is left in grassland after the destruction of forest, and may consequently act as the centre for re-establishment of the forest.



The wood makes good firewood and charcoal; also in demand for heavy construction, poles, piles, joinery, mine props, furniture, ladders, agricultural implements, tool handles, veneer, plywood and block-board. In Zambia it is used to make dug-out canoes.

Grows as a dominant or co-dominant tree in lowlands and in mountain regions common throughout, locally abundant and often forming nearly pure stands. Occurring on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean and one of the most widespread and abundant forest trees in Africa: Angola, Benin, Burundi, Cameroon, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, DR Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda,

The kernel is edible, and is oil-bearing. It is usually eaten after roasting and then mixed with other foods. Roasted bark is added to palm wine to improve its flavour.

Parinari excelsea flowers

Fruit of Parinari excelsea

Which plants do your bees use? Send details to the address on page 2 7

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Opened by Tanzania’s Prime Minister, Mr Mizengo Pinda, himself a keen beekeeper, the Symposium that took place in Arusha, Tanzania in the second week of November, was smoothly organised by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism. Several hundred people attended the Symposium, with most African nations represented. The discussions and workshops provided testament to the fact that Africa’s honey bees are healthy and resilient to climate changes and pests and diseases. African honey bee products are diverse, high quality, chemicalfree and in high demand. The Symposium’s Workshops were extremely popular

Summary of discussions at the Symposium Issue



Conservation Loss of bee forage and bees through deforestation, fire, charcoal and other incompatible land use.

Establish bee reserves to conserve bee forage and bee populations. Plant trees suitable for bee forage and compatible with the local environment.


The international, regional and national demand exceeds supply. Domestic prices are high compared with the international market. Lack of investment at all stages of the supply chain.

Investment in supply chain development. Ensure availability of appropriate financial services and suitable products for the apiculture industry. Promote the value of African bee products to access niche and highvalue markets. Explore bee-product diversification based on market studies.


Pollination services are little developed and this income generating opportunity is not utilised.

Carry out cost-benefit analysis of pollination services provision.

Bee health

Presence of Varroa mites. Pressure on beekeepers to apply treatments. Pesticides are a growing problem in agricultural landscapes.

African honey bee populations are resilient and adapting to climate change and Varroa mites. We must maintain the African gene pool and never import bees. Chemical treatments should not be applied but we can instead rely on the genetic resilience and good adaptation of African bees. Build dialogue between beekeepers and farmers and discuss integrated pest management. Develop and disseminate guidelines about preventing contamination of bees and bee products. More studies needed to build the evidence base for honey bee health.

Beekeeping technology

Different approaches are being used and promoted with mixed results. There is lack of clarity about the advantages and disadvantages of different hive-types and associated equipment.

Beekeeping technology needs to be understood in the context of the whole beekeeping system and not just the hive-type. Adoption of good beekeeping practices that incorporate indigenous knowledge, technologies and experiences. The beekeeping system needs to take into consideration the available resources, the environment, the infrastructure and the preferences of the beekeepers.

Sector Lack of co-ordination within the sector. co-ordination Conflicting and duplicating development efforts.

Build and strengthen national co-ordinating apex bodies, which can represent the interests of the stakeholders and coordinate development of the sector. Build strong links between grassroots community groups and associations and national apex bodies. Communicate effectively with development partners to ensure that their support is strategically targeted. 8

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Bees for Development took the opportunity to organise a preAPIMONDIA Symposium one day Workshop in Arusha to reflect on the recently concluded Uganda Honey Trade Project. Njiro Honeybee Research Centre, part of Tanzania Wildlife Research Institute, kindly hosted the Workshop. This successful Project in Uganda, funded by Comic Relief, has been based on a partnership of over five years between BfD, the regional trade body ApiTrade Africa, Uganda’s National Apiculture organisation TUNADO, and the rural Beekeepers Cooperative Society KABECOS. The Workshop addressed the concept of achieving poverty alleviation by focussing on honey and beeswax trade. The Workshop was attended also by representatives of Bees for Development Ethiopia and Ghana, Mr Mulufird Ashagrie, President of the Apimondia Commission for Africa, and a number of other participants interested to learn more about this approach to rural development. Pictured below (L to R) are members of these organisations: Mr. Jurua M Jackson, Mr. Robert Grace Kisenyi, Dr Nicola Bradbear, Mr Ely Mugisha, Ms Alice Kangave, Mr Kamanzi Michael, Ms. Sauda Babirye, Ms. Akumu Poncianah, Mr. Kisaali Bosco, Ms Grace Biryomumaisho, Mr. Tunanukye George, Ms Janet Lowore, Mr. Biryomumaisho Dickson and Mr. Bosco Okello.

The Apimondia Symposium’s field trips afforded great opportunity for discussion


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APITRADE AFRICA IN ZIMBABWE The 4th ApiTrade Africa Event was held in Harare, Zimbabwe from 6–11 October: the Local Organising Committee and Secretariat at the Ministry of Agriculture successfully delivered the biggest beekeeping event to have been held there. Representatives from 14 countries attended with Botswana, Mozambique and Swaziland participating for the first time.

The discussion focussed on beeswax trade, explaining that the international demand for beeswax free from chemical contamination far exceeds the supply – making clean African beeswax highly sought after. Provided that good harvesting practices are always used, honey and beeswax harvested from local-style hives and from movable frame hives do not differ in quality. The UK buyer David Wainwright, told the African audience that, in his experience, the unique selling point of African honey is its excellent and desirable flavour.

In addition to the technical papers (see www.apitradeafrica. org) there was a discussion concerning honey trade with expert panelists from Tanzania, Uganda, UK and Zimbabwe.

Jacqueline Gowe of Sweet Maungwe Ltd, Zimbabwe, shares her award of Best Overall Exhibitor at ApiExpo Africa 2014 with her mother (left) and aunt (right)

Mr Mutisi from Makoni Beekeepers Assocation in Zimbabwe is awarded by Dr Gumbo the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women’s Affairs, and Harun Baiya, Chairperson of ApiTrade Africa

Mr Anas Moorbannoo of Miel’Or Ltd Mauritius, displays honey flavoured with chilli and cinnamon. He won 1st Runner-up in the Overall Exhibitor category of the show 10

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The judging panel talk to Sabiti Kisembo at the stand of Bee Natural Uganda. The judges from left to right: Alice Kangave (Uganda), Mandla Langwenya (Swaziland), Joseph Sejewe (Botswana), Smith Nyatsande (Zimbabwe) and Mwanahamisi Mapolo (Tanzania)


IX Mesoamerican Congress on Native Bees / IX Congreso Mesoamericano sobre Abejas Nativas 20-25 April 2015, San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas Further details


13th Asian Apicultural Association Conference 2016 Further details will appear here


1st Pan-European Honey Breakfast 21 November 2015 Further details


APIMONDIA: 44th International Apicultural Congress 15-20 September 2015, Deajeon Further details see page 16


Beetradex 7 March 2015, Stoneleigh Park Further details Welsh Beekeepers Convention 28 March 2015, Builth Wells Further details BBKA Spring Convention 17-18 April 2015, Harper Adams College Further details Conwy Honey Fair 14 September 2015, North Wales Further details National Honey Show 29-31 October 2015, Weybridge Further details


University of Florida Bee College 6-7 March 2015, St Augustine Further details

BfD Courses Sustainable beekeeping 28-29 March 2015 Ragman’s Lane Permaculture Farm, Gloucestershire, UK Strengthening livelihoods in developing countries through beekeeping 27 March 2015 Monmouth

BfD Beekeepers Safaris Vietnam

November 2015

Trinidad and Tobago January 2016

For more details about our courses and safaris see

If you want notice of your conference, workshop or meeting to be included here and on our website send details to Bees for Development, address on page 16 11

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• Ubwiza bwa Nyungwe Honey Processing and Sales Centre is now in operation and a clerk, watchman and three labourers employed; • The Union is the main buyer of honey harvested by member co-operatives with honey production at 9.6 tonnes returning RWF18,597,637 (US$26,935; €21,772) back to the community since 2013; • The Union has sold RWF11,281,100 (US$16,339; €13,208) of honey and RWF791,800 (US$1,147; €927) of beeswax candles; • Forty-four bee farmers received training on honey quality control and 56 on using top-bar hives, with the introduction of 100 top-bar hives across the Park; • Information provided by beekeepers has led to the apprehension of seven illegal honey collectors, who under supervision have formed Rwabidege Ex-Poacher Beekeepers Co-operative and been allocated 42 top-bar hives; • Capacity building for eight community members in governance, management, leadership and business understanding; • The Union is registered at national level. Ubwiza bwa Nyungwe bee products are certified by the Rwanda Bureau of Standards and 90% of the honey meets the Bureau’s quality requirements; • Marketing of bee products has 19 sales points (customers); • The number of bush fires in the Park has been reduced.

Congratulations to Professor L R Verma on this prestigious award in recognition of his work and dedication to the cause of apiculture in Meghalaya, India

RWANDA Ubwiza bwa Nyungwe Beekeepers Union is working with 13 co-operatives around Nyungwe National Park. The Union’s purpose is to collect, package and market honey from the Members, and to prevent bush fires in and around the Park.

Challenges • Geographic location of the co-operatives around the forest perimeter; • Climate change; • Illegal honey collectors; • Ageing beekeeping population; • The co-operatives have pledged to sell 9 tonnes of honey to the Union in 2014. It must be ensured this reaches market; • The Union is not yet able to cover some costs such as large items of equipment and depreciation on buildings; • Wild animals destroy hives searching for honey; • The honey storage room is too small.

Purpose • Co-ordinate and provide training to members of co-operatives at an affordable cost • Assist beekeepers in obtaining equipment at a good price • Buy honey from co-operatives and sell on their behalf • Help establish new co-operatives • Manage the Kitabi honey collection and processing facility • Act as a link for beekeepers in Nyungwe National Park and the outside market • Ensure proper management and explore ways to ensure financial sustainability for the Union.

Next steps • Explore further markets for bee products and participate in trade fairs; • Consolidate good book-keeping, and accounting practices; • Annual visits by two committee members to each co-operative.

Union members Name Coabisetwu Coaseki Kuaga Kodabu Kauka Dukwizuburyohe Kauki Codape Coduru Co-operative Intimtirwa Co-operative Impuzaruvumvu Kaubwe Coasecya Total

Age of beekeepers 18-25 26-35 36-45 >45 0 49 5 1 2 138 16 2 8 105 30 0 9 1 4 21 9 72 23 2 5 40 35 8 7 31 10 0 5 64 32 2 7 124 96 15 29 26 8

Female 6 4 15 4 17 4 9 25 22 25

Male 48 153 130 10 108 78 47 76 207 53

Total 54 157 145 14 125 82 56 101 229 78








0 4 56

9 10 107

31 71 893

3 35 315

3 3 163

40 117 1208

43 120 1371

The team from Rwanda on their stand at the 4th ApiTradeAfrica Event held in October (see pages 10 and 11). Rwanda won the bid host the next Event in 2016 12

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We are researchers and extension workers in apiculture in Vietnam. We worked for many years for the Bee Research and Development Center (BRDC). BRDC became a branch of the National Apicultural Joint Stock Company (VINAPI), and we were finding funds for our work difficult. We stopped working for BRDC and now work for the new governmental unit the Bee Research Center (BRC), of the National Institute of Animal Sciences of Vietnam.

When your sponsorship is due to expire you will receive a survey from us Ensure to complete this survey and return it to BfD as soon as possible. REMEMBER If you change your email address or any other contact details let us know so we can update our records If we cannot contact you, we cannot sponsor you!

BRC was established on 3 March 2014 by the Minister of Agricultural and Rural Development. Major tasks include research and beekeeping extension projects. Working for BRC, we have better possibilities to receive research funding from our government, build networking on bees, and conduct research and development projects. In the course of working at BRDC, we conducted and participated in numerous R&D projects. Recently we collaborated with researchers from University of Guelph, Canada; University of Michigan, USA and University of Uppsala, Sweden. We have been successful in building up household beekeeping models by the application of participatory extension methods. Thuy Phuong, Bee Research Center, Hanoi Award for Dr Gard Otis The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development has awarded a Commemorative Medal For Agriculture and Rural Development to Professor, Doctor Gard W. Otis, Lecturer of University of Guelph, Canada – for his work on the Project Beekeeping Development and Rural Extension in Vietnam.

NOTICE BOARD FUNDING FROM FAO TeleFood Special Fund Beekeepers’ groups and associations may apply for project funding of up to US$10,000. Request documents should include a brief description of project objectives, proposed food production or income-generating activities, work plan, number of participants, detailed list of inputs with cost estimates and reporting arrangements. See FELLOWSHIP Fellowships to African students for an MSc in International Rural Development and Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security at the Royal Agricultural University Cirencester, UK. Experience in agriculture, food or natural resource exploitation and management; an interest in land reform; and a desire to make a strategic and sustainable contribution to Africa’s development. Up to 10 African fellows supported each year. Deadline 3 January 2015. See GRANTS TO SCIENTISTS IFS Research Grants are for citizens of a developing country who are scientists under 40 years of age, with at least a Master’s or equivalent degree or research experience and attached to a university, national research institution or research-orientated NGO in a developing country. See AWARD A professional development programme that strengthens the research and leadership skills of African women in agricultural science, empowering them to contribute more effectively to poverty alleviation and food security in sub-Saharan Africa. See GRANT Non-profit or cultural organisations can apply for funding from the Commonwealth Foundation to support activities including training courses, workshops, conferences, exchanges and study visits to promote international or intercultural exchange, co-operation and sharing of skills, knowledge and ideas between people from developing Commonwealth countries. Conditions apply. See AMERICAN BEE JOURNAL The oldest English language beekeeping publication in the world. See a digital copy and subscribe at BEE CRAFT UK Beekeeping Journal for beginners and seasoned apiarists. View a digital copy and subscribe on line at BEE CULTURE The magazine of American beekeeping. 140 years experience. Today’s techniques. Tomorrow’s ideas. US$15 for a digital subscription. See 13

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BOOK SHELF Manuka – the biography of an extraordinary honey Clive van Eaton 2014 256 pages £14.95 (US$23; €19) Published by Exisle Press ISBN 9781775591634 This is the book that has been waiting to be written about Manuka honey. Cliff van Eaton provides a wonderful profile of Manuka honey – what it is, how its’ healing properties have been studied, and bringing readers right up to date with the most recent research findings concerning the amazing basis for Manuka’s healing properties. However, the book is not just about Manuka: it is also about bees and honey, plants and history, coincidences and humans. An excellent read – full of interesting facts for everyone, beekeepers included.

Beekeeping on two fronts 1914–1918 Compiled by Stuart Ching 2014 52 pages £8.95 (US$14 ; €11) Published by Northern Bee Books ISBN 9781908904560 This is a lovely book, a compilation of letters written to the British Bee Journal during the period 1914-1918. Some of the letters are from Sergeant Atwell who fought in the British Army in France, and found time to write to the Journal with records of his bee sightings and sad accounts of beekeepers within the conflict areas. Letters from others describe problems facing British beekeepers at the time, especially the famous ‘Isle of Wight’ disease.

Reflections on beekeeping W S Robson 2014 98 pages £9.95 (US$16; €13) Published by Northern Bee Books ISBN 9781904846826 Another lovely text about bees and beekeepers. Willie Robson has worked for more than 50 years earning his living from beekeeping at Chain Bridge Honey Farm in Northumberland, near to the English-Scottish border. Mr Robson learned his beekeeping from his father, Selby, and has in turn passed on this knowledge to his son, Stephen. Packed full of beekeeping lore, this is a charming, gentle discourse on gentle bees and beekeeping.

Diagnosing bee mites Diana Sammataro 2014 98 pages £9.95 (US$16; €13) Published by Northern Bee Books ISBN 9781908904591 A very clear and useful book full of pictures and diagrams that explain in the most straightforward way how to identify Varroa and other bee mites, and how to diagnose the symptoms they cause. Treatment options are summarised. Very helpful pictures make this a useful and rapid learning tool.

Smoking allowed – A pictorial past of the honey bee smokers in the United States 2014 64 pages £9.95 (US$16; €13) Published by Northern Bee Books ISBN 9781908904461 The title says it all! Pictures of smokers dating from the smudge pot of the 1860s to the Higginsville smoker of 1932.

So you want to be a beekeeper? J R Slade 2014 66 pages £9.95 (US$16; €13) Published by Northern Bee Books ISBN 9781908904546 A very simple and brief guide to beekeeping as practised in the UK. Some rather quaint terminology.

Stay up to date through Twitter. We update our Twitter account daily – fun & interesting information on beekeeping around the world. Go to and start to Tweet today! 14

Bees for Development Journal 113


DVD: Commercial top-bar hives in Zambia


Horst Wendorf Video Productions 2014 Running time 41 minutes £25 (US$39; €31)

Specialist for beekeeping, honeyhouse and honey processing - worldwide.

For centuries beekeepers in the Copperbelt Province of NW Zambia have been using bark hives hung high in trees because they proved to be the best choice economically for small-scale farmers to generate income from honey production. However the hives are no longer environmentally sustainable as mature trees are killed in the hive making process. Since 1990 several development programmes have looked at alternatives. As narrator Joseph Masaku Fwalanga says “frame hives ae not successful in Africa as they rely on extensive knowledge, skills and imports”. Top-bar hives are usually kept on stands to raise them off the ground, but the bees prefer hives hung in trees so occupancy rate was low and honey production poor. Hanging the top-bar hives in trees (to copy bark hives) proved impractical as a ready to harvest top-bar hive can weigh up to 80 kg and needs several people to lower it to the ground. In 2008 the Kafakumba Training Centre started a beekeeping venture to commercialise top-bar hive beekeeping and created the private company Bee Sweet Honey Ltd. Five years later the company developed the ‘hybrid’ hive – a shorter top-bar hive that can be suspended in trees with the aid of a pulley and grappling iron. To date 20,000 hybrid hives have been allocated to small-scale farmers: hive occupancy rates are good and honey production is on the increase. Available to purchase from our online store www.beesfordevelopment/shop


Also in store: DVDs by Horst Wendorf on beekeeping in Laos, the Philippines and Zambia

The hybrid hive

Buying from BfD

• Secure order and payment at • to • Credit/Debit card Maestro/MasterCard/Visa. We need card number, name on card, valid from and expiry dates, card issue number (if given), security number on back of card. • Cheque/bank draft in GBP or Euros payable to Bees for Development

Bottlingtanks Made of high quality stainless steel. All tanks come with a loose-fitting lid or with an airtight lid as an option. Capacity from 25 kg - 600 kg.

Solar Wax Melter For frames or comb. It has a strong wooden frame, insulating double window and a small tray for collecting the melted wax / honey.

Refractometer Measures water content in honey. Range: 12-25%. With automatic temperature compensation.

Honey Press Easy and effective way to press your honey. Made entirely of stainless steel. Holds approx. 9.5 L.

Honey Extractors Our modern tangential manual extractors. High quality machines at a very affordable price.

Packaging Many different sizes and shapes in both PET plastic and glas. Available with plastic and metal lids.

at Available om ty ien .c www.sw ... for better honey

Swienty A/S


Hørtoftvej 16, Ragebøl DK-6400 Sønderborg Tel. +45 74 48 69 69 Fax + 45 74 48 80 01

Bees for Development Journal 113




15-20 SEPTEMBER 2015

This Journal is available for resource-poor beekeepers, projects, schools and groups in developing countries Supported with funds raised by Bees for Development Trust

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SUPPORT FOR TRAINING BfD Training Booklets and Training Cards are for use by beekeeper trainers in Africa Each booklet provides one day of training on one topic. The cards provide pictures and plans illustrating techniques discussed in the booklets. These are included in our Resource Boxes for training events and workshops. Projects and associations in developing countries are welcome to apply for a Sponsored Resource Box by filling out an application form on our website, or request the form by email. Projects in other areas can purchase Resource Boxes through our website store.

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