Bees for Development Journal Edition 42 - March 1997

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Our title banner carries the legend ‘The journal for sustainable beekeeping’. We promote beekeeping that meets current needs without adversely affecting future generations of bees or their food plants.

This has benefits for humans too. We want our own future generations to see as many bee species and as much habitat as we do today. Sustainable beekeeping has to be the goal because we do not know, and dare not risk the consequences of eliminating plant-pollinating insects.

Editor: Dr Nicola Bradbear Co-ordinator: Helen Jackson

PUBLISHERS Bees for Development, Troy, Monmouth, NP5 4AB, United Kingdom

SUBSCRIPTION DEPARTMENT The subscription rate for 12 months is 16 or 35SUS by airmail to any address worldwide. A subscription form is printed in Books to Buy. Past editions are

In some parts of the world, beekeeping is becoming

increasingly difficult. Steve Balogh’s article on pages four and fve presets some o the ral problems now beeeeprs. ntroduced honeybee diseases, and facing introduced Africanized bees, mean that each colony of honeybees requires more management. When this happens beekeeping becomes more labour-intensive and therefore expensive. This is a bad scenario for US beekeepers who have developed highly


intensive beekeeping practices. Meanwhile ‘experts’ have once more tried to introduce temperate zone honeybees into (tropical) West Africa. Read about this latest and fortunately unsuccessful project on pages ten and~~ eleven.

IN THIS Inside Information

ISSUE ee 2 3


Economic implications of Africanized Bees


Fly by Nights


Practical Beekeeping News around the World



Out of bees in Africa .....10

Look & Learn Ahead


Notice Board


Video Shelf





Mista Irradbeav HOW TO CONTACT US By post : Bees for Development, Troy, Monmouth, NP5 4AB, United Kingdom By e-mail: 100410.2631

By fax: +44 (0) 16007 16167

By phone: +44 (0) 16007 13648

INFORMATIONS DE COVER PICTURE Fantasy Castle painted by Linda R Crouch in coloured beeswax using encaustic techniques. The Ancient Greeks, Romans and Egyptians used melted and coloured beeswax as a painting medium. Today, encaustic art uses

coloured beeswax and a hot iron to produce unique pictures. (Bookshelf page 14).

Linda Crouch welcomes commissions for encaustic paintings. Contact her by telephone

PRODUCTION AND DISTRIBUTION Four editions are published each year and 4000 copies of each edition are printed and distributed world-wide.

B&D obviously needs to promote sustainable beekeeping more vigorously!

each. Readers in developing 5 countries may pay by Beeswax Barter or Candle Currency (see B&D38).

DERNIERE HEURE Attention tous nos lecteurs frangais! Est-ce que vous préféreriez lire B&D en francais. Nous espérons publier en 1997 les éditions francaises de notre journal. Veuillez nous contacter si vous voudriez recevoir vos numéros en francais.

ADVERTISEMENTS Advertisements and enclosures in B&D reach readers in many countries. Advertisement rates are: Quarter page 50; Half page 100, Full page 200. Enclosures 40 per kilogram. Prices subject to VAT in


EC countries.

REPRODUCTION Information in B&D

is intended to help If you wish to everywhere. beekeepers or translate item, please any reproduce acknowledge B&D and the author and send

us a copy.

SPONSORS Bees for Development has received financial support from The Secretariat for the Environment and Sustainable Development, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Denmark, towards the production and distribution of Beekeeping & Development.

Bees for Development acknowledges CTA (the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation), The Netherlands for

providing sponsorship. We are grateful to Sandoz SPC Ltd and all the beekeeping groups and individuals who assist us.

We urgently need more sponsors. Please contact us direct if you can help

+44 (0) 1222 530397.


A Bees for Development publication


Propolis What is propolis?

Frankincense is a resin produced by the tree Boswellia sacra. /t has long been valued by man, and during the Roman empire Frankincense was

Propolis is the sticky ‘glue’ used by honeybees. Propolis is often coloured dark brown, but it can also be yellow, green or red

How should


equal in value to gold. It was burned as an offering to the gods and used as a fumigant to combat disease and evil odours.

pronounce propolis?

To rhyme with how you pronounce acropolis!

Where does it come from? Plants are literally rooted to the spot where they grow This means that if attacked by an enemy, plants cannot run for it Plants have therefore evolved chemical defence systems to protect themselves. These include toxins, bitter tastes and stinging repellents. Tender buds would provide tasty snacks for insects unless protected. often a plant protects its buds with sticky gums When a tree is wounded it secretes resin around the wound as the first stage of the healing process. Humans also derive great benefit from these powerful plant chemicals: there are thousands of examples. Everyday substances include aspirin (from willow trees), penicillin (from a fungus), caffeine (from coffee) and menthol (from mint plants). Many medicines are derived from plants.

Like humans, bees also harvest powerful plant chemicals. They do it by collecting tree gums and resins and placing them in their nest.


What use is it to humans?

The bee bites off scraps of plant resin with her mandibles and packs them into the corbiculae (pollen baskets) on her hind legs. Each corbicula can carry about 10 mg of propolis. Because of its stickiness, propolis gathering is a slow business: it can take an hour to fill both baskets. Back at the hive, unloading can take another hour. Propolis is only collected when the temperature is above 18°C.

Propolis has long been used as a medicine. It is commonly available as an ingredient in toothpaste, soaps and ointments. Many

Do all honeybees collect propolis? No: Apis cerana is one honeybee species that apparently does not use propolis. Different races of Apis mellifera use propolis to different extents; the Caucasian race is a particularly enthusiastic collector.

So what exactly is in propolis? It is not possible to define propolis any more than it is possible to define honey: it all

A Bees for Development publication

where micro-organisms could flourish. The volatile

oils in propolis must serve as a kind of antiseptic air-freshener. @

How do bees collect propolis?

Sometimes bees collect man-made materials and use these in the same way as ‘real’ propolis. For example bees will collect drying paints, road tar or varnish. Presumably to bees these substances have a consistency and strong odour similar to plant resins.

propolis to keep their homes dry, cosy and hygienic The propolis coating makes the walls of their nesting place waterproof and draughtproof. Propolis is used to seal up any cracks or gaps

depends what is available to the bees. In general, propolis consists of resins, waxes, volatile oils and pollen, also vitamins, minerals and plant chemicals like flavonoids. The problem for people marketing propolis commercially is to obtain a standardised product.

people value propolis for sore throats and toothache - take a pea-sized piece of propolis and keep it in your mouth. A tincture of propolis is made by dissolving it in alcohol.

varnish inside brood cells before the queen lays eggs into them. Presumably this

provides a strong, waterproof and hygienic unit for developing larvae. @®

How do you harvest it? To encourage bees to produce convenientlysized propolis, place a perforated grid in the hive. This is similar to a queen excluder but with smaller slots - not more than 6 mm. The bees will seal up the slots with propolis. Take out the grid and put it in a freezer. When cold enough, flexing the sheet will cause the propolis pieces to drop out. it might be possible to harvest 50 g per hive per season this way.

How much is it worth? Current world price is around


USS per kg.

building material to decrease the size of nest entrances, and to make them smooth for passing bee traffic. Asa

@ A thin layer is used to

Is propolis antibiotic? Yes, it has been proved that propolis kills bacteria. There are many claims for the medicinal properties of propolis.

Apis mellifera honeybees use

Toembalm bodies of mice or other predators too large for them to eject from the nest: these would

otherwise decay and be a source of infection. @

Apis florea, one of the Asian

honeybee species, uses tings of propolis (like grease bands) to coat the branch from which its single-comb nest is suspended, to deter predators.





Steve Balogh, United Kingdom Beekeeping in the USA is big business. It is difficult to calculate beekeeping’s contribution to Gross National Product. Although figures can be put to honey production and other products directly harvested by beekeepers, the major economic benefits from beekeeping are as a result of pollination. Beekeeping in continental USA is a heavily capital-intensive, year-round, itinerant operation. From citrus groves in Florida to cotton fields in the Midwest, a colossal agricultural enterprise is serviced by mobile beekeepers. Equipment and methods are specialised for rapid translocation of immense numbers of colonies from crop to crop as they come into season.

Every hive overwintering is like a pregnant cow On the East Coast, migratory beekeepers take trailer loads of bees to Florida, Gulf Coast and South Carolina locations. Each hive that overwinters in the south is like a pregnant

cow. The pollen and nectar of spring bloom stimulate the bees and it is “calving” time. The bees build up rapidly and more hives are

started From Florida, California, and the South, the thousands of truckloads of bees that have been used in citrus groves and market gardens for honey production and pollination, are loaded and transported to North-Eastern and Great Lakes orchards. Hundreds of thousands of hives are provided to pollinate the crops. Many crop growers are not able to get as many as they want, and most have to pay a little more than they preferred, but few are without


Techniques not

worthwhile elsewhere Stringent controls and preventative measures must be used to avoid the spread of diseases and parasites. with such highly mobile populations these could cause devastation. With so large an industry it is no surprise that US research leads the world and that techniques have developed that would not merit the investment elsewhere. The arrival in New Mexico and Texas of Africanized bee colonies now poses the kind of threat that pinpoints the weakness of intensive methods. The economies of scale that enable a small population of beekeepers to manage a prodigiously large number of

colonies, now become a significant liability. The vigilance and hive by hive attention common in the rest of the world are not feasible for US operators.

No northern limit to


Even where action to replace an Africanized queen can be taken in time, and every drone killed, the labour to successfully maintain hybrid-free colonies, assuming it were possible at all on the scale that US beekeepers are practising, is completely uneconomic proposition. The experience in Central America is not encouraging: Africanized bees proceeded to spread without any noticeable effect from the human intervention. a


Africanized bees can overwinter even though they are a tropical race of bee. There is no northerly latitude which will mark a limit to their progress. It seems that the US Government is caught between rocks and hard places wherever it turns; it certainly appears to have no strategy to offer either beekeeper or farmers This is despite the catastrophic effect on agricultural output that will follow if conditions in the future become uneconomic for beekeeping.


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Let us review some of the statistics to get a sense of the proportions this problem involves. (See table below)

Is there a dearth of bees? Official US Government data on 1996 honeybee populations are not available at the time of going to press. However following five consecutive years of the worst honeybee declines in US history, experts predict that pollinator scarcity could seriously limit crop yields in the US for such traditional Thanksgiving foods as almonds, apples, cranberries, pumpkins and squashes. Anecdotal evidence from around the USA indicates that farmers and gardeners continue to feel the effects of declining honeybee populations. One indicator of these shortages is the cost to farmers for renting honeybee colonies to pollinate their crops. In the Pacific Northwest for example, it was found that rental costs for agricultural pollination had climbed more than 50% in the past three years.

Loss of protection We are looking at a situation where scarcity of native pollinators, inappropriate incentives to farmers with regard to pesticide use, and to beekeepers with regard to migratory apiculture, could accelerate the expansion of the Africanized bee population across continental USA. This could happen far more quickly than has been recorded to date.

Even now, as we talk of need for more protection for native pollinators from pesticides, there is intensive lobbying going on to remove the only current protection they have in US law.

Lobbying The pesticide industry is lobbying by pretending to “reform” bee protection directions. It is aimed at shifting the burden for bee protection entirely back to beekeepers. It seeks to evade any legal protection for wild

pollinators by specifying only managed honeybees in label directions. South Carolina Pesticide Regulator Head, Dr Von McCaskill, proposed replacement of the current directions with the vague statement “Avoid applications which would result in adverse effect to managed honeybees”. This statement would be completely unenforceable, even for domestic bees, and totally removes protection for all wild bees. Africanized queens hatch out a good day sooner than their European sisters whom they therefore get to kill before they hatch. They swarm frequently and under conditions of A Bees for Development publication

migratory beekeeping would abscond from hives that were constantly moved around. The beekeepers will therefore be stuck with the task of either ensuring supersedure with queens of known pedigree or of managing hybrid colonies. The defensiveness for which Africanized bees are notorious will also pose problems for migrant beekeepers. All these factors combine to make inadvertent actions and the ill-advised inaction of the US Regulatory Authorities about as damaging as possible.

Experience in Brazil has shown that Africanized colonies can be managed satisfactorily: to an extent they have increased honey yields year by year. The practice adopted differs drastically from US methods, is labour intensive, and hives remain in the same place all year round, despite seasonal and geographical vagaries of nectar flow. To avoid catastrophe the Department of Agriculture should be training farmers to manage their own bee colonies and to prepare for the day they find they have hybridised populations. They should also call a halt to migratory beekeeping while they still have the power to do anything about the way this

problem is spread.

Finally they cannot seriously entertain the proposal to adulterate the law controlling pesticide (ab)use. Instead they must take clear initiative, together with the Department of the Environment, to promote the native pollinators of the USA. At present they seem hell-bent to exterminate them.

United States Agricultural Exports (S Billions) 1993




1997 forecast

Oilseed and products






Fruits and preparations












Vegetables and preparations






Tree nuts and preparations






These figures refer to export values. Domestic consumption is greater yet.




APICULTURE SANS FRONTIERES A non-profit making association promoting beekeeping in developing countries. ASF also evaluates and supervises projects.

As in previous years ASF is offering courses on

General, Tropical and Subtropical Beekeeping 1-25 July 1997 at the Beekeeping Centre, Mons, Belgium

Courses are in French For information contact

De Vriendt Philippe, Chemin de la procession, 31B-7000 Mons,

Belgium Tel/Fax: +32 (0) 65 35 47 89

RECO commonly known as Red Sanders, is small deciduous tree. It grows in Andhra Pradesh, india. We have been studying the reproductive ecology of this economically important tree species in its natural habitat in the Sri Lankamalai Reserve Forest. This is typically dry, hilly and rocky habitat. Pterocarpus santalinus, a

yellow. On one occasion, the research team went into the deep forest at 0400 hours and



The trees have no leaves during February and March. The summer showers trigger the development of new foliage and flowering

tree in full bloom. By then, the rock bee Apis dorsata was actively foraging at the



Pterocarpus santalinus


very special flowering pattern: during the flowering period, the tree does not have flowers every day. On some days there is mass flowering and this is followed by little or no flowering for 2-5 days. In one tree that was watched a

continuously, flowering occurred over a period of 28 days, with mass blooming on five occasions. The first mass bloom was evident on 18 April, second on 21 April, third on 26 April, fourth on 5 May and fifth on 6 May 1995. Mass blooming on two consecutive days is a rare phenomenon. This kind of flowering pattern with a few bursts of flowering is energetically advantageous to the plant. It concentrates reproductive energy into those few, specific flowering periods.

A swarm of bees invaded Harare Sports Stadium, Zimbabwe, as two African national football teams, the Black Stars of Ghana, and their Zimbabwe counterparts met in a World Cup qualifying match in January 1997.

Just before the half-time whistle, the swarm descended on the playing field apparently to congratulate the two sides for an excellent display of good football. This swarm | believe, had been watching the first half of the match hovering high up in the air above the stadium. They then decided to come down to meet the players, but “Lo and Behold”, players, officials and spectators


The flowers of Red Sanders open at night: flower opening begins around 2330 hours. All the flowers open en masse: despite its name the petals of Red Sanders are in fact bright

flowers of this tree. The foraging activity of the bees continued up to 0630 hours. On another occasion, the research team spent the whole night in the forest to find out the exact time of flower opening. We noticed rock bee visitation at 0230 hours. There was a full moon. First, the bees were found foraging ona nearby tree of Bauhinia racemosa, where they were

collecting pollen.

building. It

The seems

rock bees on

Pterocarpus santalinus

continued foraging up to 0500 hours and from then onwards

their activity declined and had ceased totally by 0730 hours. During daylight hours, no other insect visitor was observed except Xylocopa latipes that made occasional visits. is summary of the full paper presented at India’s National Conference on Tropical Bees and the




see News

Around the World



alike absconded, some of them lying down flat, and stiff on the turf! Some players covered their head with their jerseys to avoid stings. Surprised at this reception the swarm of bees quickly took to the air and disappeared to the relief of all in the stadium.


After this excitement the match was a bit of a disappointment,

ending in


goal-less draw.

Kwame Aidoo,

B&D’s Correspondent

in Ghana

A Bees for Development publication



George MacRobert, Zimbabwe


in some areas it is

necessary to place metal grids over the bees’ entrance

Bee houses offer security against vandalism and theft of hives.

to keep out predators like

@ The hives are


Bees appear to be more amenable to the beekeeper working with them,

especially during day light hours However one beekeeper remarked to me, “Have you seen what is going on outside the bee house while you are safe and secure inside?” in other words, if the bees become agitated their annoyance appears to be . directed towards the area outside the bee house, rather than inside.

honey badgers, rats and



protected from the weather and therefore last longer.


A bee house built of

blocks, and with window bars: good protection from thieves.




With a floor of compacted clay/sand mixture or concrete it is easy to control ants and termites.


if portable (as shown below right) a prefabricated bee house can be taken down, moved and re-erected on another site.

DISADVANTAGES Bee houses are expensive.


Unless the bee house is of the portable type it can only be used in one place. This means that forage must be available at all times or the beekeeper must take less honey or feed the bees with sugar syrup when forage is scarce.

This bee house 1S

built of brick

and plaster with a corrugated tin roof. It has

space for 12 hives.




A prefabricated bee house made of sheet metal.

Space for


A Bees for Development publication


A bee house built like a traditional conical, thatched hut. This bee house can accommodate eight top-bar hives or frame hives.







CHINA The Chinese Journal



recently provided some entertainment for “diverting oneself from loneliness in the

Re6VE ‘- 6,





wilderness where

FAO takes initiative The FAO Regional Office for Africa based in Accra, Ghana organised a one-week Regional Training Seminar on Beekeeping and Mushroom Farming at Ho, Volta Region, in November 1996.

migratory beekeepers are often


required to live”.



Op Beekeepers were ee asked to vote for their 15 favourite articles that had been published in Journal of Bee. Authors of the 15 articles receiving most votes were awarded with prizes, and the reader with the highest percent of hits was titled “Most Honourable

‘Reader’. Thanks


Gan Jiaming for this translation from







Zone boundaries

Volcanic Risk Map, Soufriere eruption, Montserrat, December 1996. Moving from zone G towards A represents increasing risk. Potential hazards include: pyroclastic flows, surges, falling rocks, and ash fall hazards.


We need to build a new honey house in the safe zone because of volcanic activities. We cannot do beekeeping in Harris, St Patrick, Plymouth or Cork Hill any more. We have approached the Montserrat Department of Agriculture for help: all they can do is to give us transportation to move the bees to the safe zone (see map). The Department of Agriculture cannot help us in any other way. Spanish

The main objective of the Seminar was to encourage rural employment using available opportunities, especially non-traditional farming activities. These can boost food production and improve the nutrition of rural


Journal of Bee


The Seminar was attended by 60 small-scale community beekeepers and resource persons from Benin, Burkina Faso, Céte d'Ivoire, Nigeria, Togo and Ghana.

We need to save our

beekeeping equipment such as extractors, storage tanks, and uncapping tanks. We have purchased a piece of land in the safe zone but we do not have the money to build a honey house. We are now asking anyone who can assist us to build the honey house. We need USS6000. We need this money urgently because we cannot go back to our beekeeping in the danger zone. Please can anyone try and help us. The money can be sent to Barclays Bank, Montserrat, account number 30 40 143 318. Cynthia Williams, President, Montserrat Beekeepers’ Association, Bridgefield, Harris, Montserrat, West Indies

The Seminar participants studied the possibility of establishing a Regional Training Programme on Beekeeping and Mushroom Farming. Kwame Aidoo


Correspondent in Ghana

INDIA National Conference on Tropical Bees and the Environment The first three-day National Conference under the auspices of Century Foundation and organised by Dr V Sivaram, Dr Anita Menon and Dr Shubha Rani was held in Bangalore in December 1996.

The Conference was inaugurated by Professor LR Verma and covered Bees and the Environment; Bee Botany and Pollination; Bee Pathology; and Beekeeping Management and Bee Economics. Session Chairmen were: Dr G P Channabasavanna, Dr V K Mattu, Dr D Rajagopal and Dr M P Singh. Field visits to inspect the apiary of the Entomology Department of the University of Agricultural Sciences, and to Nandi Hills, Kolar District were also organised.

UGANDA Assistance needed Atek Development Association is in Soroti District of Eastern Uganda, 260 miles north east of Kampala. People here are subsistence farmers. Their crops include beans, cassava, millet, peas, pigeon peas, simsim, sorghum, soya beans and sweet potatoes. Most families

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' |





THE WORLD live in houses made of mud and wattle with roofs of thatched grass.

Soroti District was badly hit during the six years of rebel activities from 1986 to 1992. There were also cattle raids by the neighbouring Karamejong tribe. All these destroyed the economy. The region that was once using ox-ploughs was now using hand hoes. This affected food production and caused the area to suffer frequently from famine.

This area is forest land, and during the rebel activity the rebels were slow to surrender to the Government, because of the good vegetation cover. This led to the displacement of people. We took refuge in Kaberamaido Trading Centre, where the Government troops were, for the four years from 1988 to 1992. When the insurgency died down, we settled back and established a new home. The old home was burnt down by the rebels, because my father was an ex-army officer who had refused to join the war.

Atek Development Association undertakes beekeeping, soya bean, and simsim cultivation. The Association selected these activities because they have higher economic value than others. With the privatisation process now taking place in Uganda, a market

has sprung up with firms offering to buy soya bean and simsim to extract oils for cooking. There are also business men looking for honey to buy for export. In case you want to advise us, or send us any information, or get more information from us, be assured that this is welcome.

John Martin Epyetu, Chairman - Atek Development Association, PO Box 496, Soroti, Uganda

UNITED KINGDOM Congratulations, Kitgum! I have been enjoying the United Kingdom‘s National Honey Show for fifteen years but the best in all that time was held in London during the last three days of November 1996: this one was particularly

exciting. All the most important British beekeeping

organisations were there, including of course Bees for

Development, with their attractive stand of trees featuring hives from different parts of the world.

A wonderful array of candles at the National Show in London


A fascinating exhibit of honey, wax and propolis was from the Kitgum Women’s

Honey Farm in Uganda. These were displayed along with photographs. The Kitgum Chairperson had travelled 300 miles to Kampala to ask His Excellency, the British High Commissioner, to deliver items for the National Honey Show to London, which he did while on leave. All the visitors were impressed by this story and the display was awarded second prize in the class for “An Interesting Beekeeping Exhibit” against some stiff competition. Well done, Kitgum! We hope that your example will inspire beekeepers all over the world to enter the show in future years.

How to take part in the Show Class 3A is for two, colourless glass or plastic containers of clear honey from any part of the world (except the United Kingdom). In 1996 this Class was popular with exhibitors. There was honey from many countries, showing the variety of honey colours and types of packaging used. Class 3B is for three plain-moulded beeswax candles up to 38 mm in diameter. There is no entry fee for entering these two classes.


You do not need to spend a day on a bus as the Kitgum representative did, you can just post three candles! Wherever you are in the world, if the mail brings this magazine to you, it can deliver your entry to the Show. The schedule for this year's Show will be available in August and you can have one as soon as it is’ ready by writing in advance to Rev Francis Capener, Baldric Road, Folkestone, CT20 2NR, United Kingdom. |

Mary Fisher The author with his sister beside one of their log hives

A Bees for Development publication



Bees for Development works hard


Aimo Out o im Af

publish information about

worthwhile and successful beekeeping development projects.

The following article is different.

iy ws



Michal Anosh, Israel

project hit bump as the South African Ministry of Agriculture changed the regulations for the shipping of bees - requiring sanitary permits and 100% security. a


Naturally occuring honeybees have evolved according to the conditions prevailing in their region. This means that they have evolved ways of surviving in the presence of local pests and predators, according to the types of plants available, and the seasons and climate. Is it reasonable to expect that honeybees introduced from a different region will survive

more successfully?

When bee expert Mondo Basmat of Israel accepted an agricultural development assignment in the Céte d'Ivoire, West Africa, in the autumn of 1994, he was looking forward to a two-year stint filled with new and rewarding experiences. But he got more than he

bargained for! In Mr Basmat's opinion, the local bees in Céte d'Ivoire were not very good at their job. He believed the bees were very aggressive and poor honey producers, and consequently proportionately fewer crops were properly pollinated. Mr Basmat and his foreign aid colleagues decided to import number of Apis mellifera colonies from Australia. These mild-mannered bees are eager and bountiful producers and it was believed that they would readily acclimatise to the Céte d'Ivoire. a

readiness for the bees’ arrival, Basmat set up training sessions in several communities and constructed appropriate facilities to receive the bees. In

From the outset, the apparently simple project was fraught with difficulties. The bees had to be shipped by air from Australia, via Kuala Lumpur, to South Africa, and then on to Abidjan in Céte d'Ivoire. The first problem was that no airline wanted to ship bees as they are notorious for escaping. Furthermore, the “no room at scheduled time was Christmas

the inn”.

After some negotiation, a suitable bee shipper was found for February 1995, but then the TEN

Some bureaucratic running around achieved the appropriate paperwork - but as for the 100% security? Well, no-one told the bees! There were to be two shipments of 240 colonies in each. For the entire journey, the bees were to be accompanied by a caretaker who would feed and water them at

stop-overs. The first shipment from Australia arrived in Johannesburg in late February and the bees were met by Basmat who cared for them over the next four days until the flight to Abidjan. While in the air, the pilot informed Basmat that the permit for the second shipment had been cancelled, as, during the scheduled stopover, some of the bees had escaped into the cargo bay in contravention of the 100% security ruling. But this was nothing compared to the troubles to come.

When the shipment arrived in Abidjan, the boxes were unpacked and put in pallets; a few hours later they were uncorked and the bees were fed sugar water Upon inspection, the bees were not up to regular standard as there was an insufficient number of bees and brood and the combs were of low quality. Seven bee frames had been divided into two colonies, just before shipping. In Basmat’s opinion a ten-frame minimum would have been necessary for success. Also the bees had not been given time to regroup before such an arduous journey. A new queen in a cage had been introduced into one colony. It is not surprising then that the day after the bees arrived they began reacting in a strange

way. Suddenly many of them simply evacuated the hive and did not return, thus debilitating an already weak colony. These bees hung A Bees for Development publication







around in huge ‘bee beards’. But they could not be tempted to go home. Maybe they were psychic.

Over the course of the next few days, the remaining bee colonies were attacked by a series of natural predators: first parasites; then ants; then crickets; and finally white herons simply stood at the entrance swallowing up bees as they abandoned the hives.

You would probably want to leave home too if you had thousands of ants invade your privacy. In one night, ants attacked and ate 32 colonies! But still some brave Apis mellifera remained.

Having been in Abidjan for only 10 days, the remaining bees were on the verge of becoming acclimatised when there was a drastic change in the weather. At the morning feeding the bees’ condition was stable - by noon the temperature rose to 32°C, the humidity reached about 95% and by 1400 hours rain began to fall. By 1600 hours some 80 mm of rain had fallen.

At this, the bees totally abandoned their hives and formed an enormous and desperately unhappy bee beard. Inside the hives there were only honeycombs and abandoned brood.

Specially isolated ant-proof stands were constructed; shaded areas were organised to keep the temperature as reasonable as possible, and all the hive openings were sealed to prevent any ‘mass exodus’ until arrival at the destination. Work groups were organised to be on stand-by for a ‘scatter’ operation. Once the bees arrived, they were to be swiftly split up and conducted to their individual villages for the maximum delivery of live bees. On 25 April 1995 the bees arrived in Johannesburg where they waited in the cold room for 54 hours until the next plane out to Abidjan. They were regularly fed and watered by Basmat and already optimism was high. There was a larger percentage of live bees and

the colonies seemed to be in a better condition. The bees were loaded on their next plane on 27 April for the flight to Abidjan which was to include one scheduled half hour stopover in Congo. However, in Congo, the passengers were all told to leave while the plane underwent technical repairs. Though Basmat insistently tried to enter the cargo bay to see if the bees were all right, he was ultimately detained at gun point by the security guards.

Four hours later the plane took off. Upon arrival in Abidjan it was clear that the cooling system in the cargo bay had been turned off during the stopover. Almost all the bees were dead. There were 4-5 cm of dead bees in the bottom of the boxes, and these were the strong, mature bees. The survivors were quickly recapped and distributed, but as soon as the boxes were opened, once again the bees and queens abandoned their new hives. The final straw came when wild bees attacked the hive. They dragged the queen out and killed her and then robbed the hive.

The bees were sprayed with water and sugar to try and entice them back into their hives, and though some initially returned for a few


seconds, they immediately departed, taking some of the other bees with them.

Thanks to the enthusiastic and dedicated efforts of Basmat’s beekeeping trainees, some 40 hives of the first shipment survived. After their shocking introduction to the Céte d'Ivoire, they seemed to have acclimatised quite nicely and are already hard at work improving the agricultural production capacity of their villages.

As a last resort, the remaining bees were put in closed boxes until nightfall, but many of them died. Ultimately, only about 100 colonies were left of the original 240. But there was hope.

Through much clever diplomatic work, the second shipment was finally approved and permitted, and in the meantime, Basmat’s team made special arrangements to forestall the problems they had previously encountered. A Bees for Development publication

10 days of their arrival in Abidjan, all 240 of the colonies in the second shipment were completely eliminated.

This Project was jointly funded by the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Israel Ministry of Agriculture Centre for International Agriculture Development Co-operation and US Aid.

IMPORTANT RESOLUTIONS CONCERNING IMPORTATION OF BEES “Apimondia recognises the important role of indigenous honeybees for biodiversity. Therefore we resolve that global transport of Apis (honeybees) into areas containing endemic Apis species be discouraged”. Apimondia Congress, Switzerland 1995 (Apimondia is the Federation of World Beekeeping Associations)

“Beekeeping development should be based on local knowledge, technology and resources, and native species. History has proved that the introduction of foreign technology very often fails, whereas the introduction of foreign bees practically always leads to failure. Also, foreign bees may have unknown effects on ecological relationships”. Conclusions and Recommendations of the Seminar on Bees and Forest in the Tropics,


“Governments must be urged by beekeepers to introduce and enforce legislation to prevent the importation of bees, or used beekeeping equipment, to West Africa”. The Banjul Bee Declaration 1991, First West African Bee Research


“The Conference discourages the importation of bees without full assessment of its impact and requests governments to seek expert advice when formulating policy”. Fifth Apiculture in Tropical Climates Conference,

Trinidad & Tobago, 1992





NOTICE BOARD PARTNER PLEA Bee Farmer in Indonesia seeks partners to produce and market bee health products.


For details contact:

JL Pembangunan 414, Bangil (67153), Jatim, indonesia Fax: (+343) 71 092 M Sudjai,

HONEY FOR SALE Tabora Beekeepers have a bumper honey crop and are eager for new markets. Interested parties are welcome to send their orders. Write


Justin Madaha, Tabora Beekeepers’ Co-op Society Ltd, Kipalapala PO Box 7017, Tabora, Tanzania

Honey available for sale and export. Contact:

D H Oza, 503 Toran Ashopalav Society, Tadwadi, Rander Road, Surat 395 009, India Fax: (+91) 261 427 440

Conserve the European Dark Bee - Second International Conference 27-30 August 1997, See, Tyrol Further details from. Nils Drivdal, Kvelland, N-4400 Flekkefjord, Norway Fax: (+47) 38 32 44 56



Progam Unit, Inter-American Development Bank, 1300 New York Avenue, Washington, DC 20577, USA

PARTNERS REQUIRED We would like to implement joint commercial projects in beekeeping, bee breeding, honey refining and packing, and production of beekeeping tools and equipment. Interested individuals and companies please send your profile and area of

interest to:

The Managing Director, Tanzania Management Services, PO Box 7, Itigi, Singida, Tanzania

ORGANISERS want your event listed in Look Ahead or Learn Ahead send details well in advance. Address on page two. If you

Bees for Development is sometimes able to support workshops by providing past editions of B&D and other teaching materials. Send details of your meeting at least three months ahead of the date.

British Beekeepers’ Spring Convention 26 April 1997, Kenilworth Further details from: British Beekeepers’

Association, National Agricultural Showground, Stoneleigh, Kenilworth, CV8 2LZ, United Kingdom Fax: (+44) 1203 690682



APIMONDIA International Apicultural Congress

Forest Products for Sustainable Forestry 7-12 July 1997, Washington

1-6 September 1997, Antwerp

Further details from: APIMONDIA, General Secretariat, Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, 101, 1-00186 Rome, Italy Fax: (+39) 6685 2286

Further details from: WSU Conferences & Institutes, Washington, USA Fax: (+1) 509 335 0945

ZIMBABWE 15th Commonwealth Forestry Conference


APIMONDIA International Apicultural Congress

12-17 May 1997, Victoria Falls

13-21 September 1999, Vancouver

Further details from: The Secretary General, 15th Commonwealth Forestry Conference,

Further details from: APIMONDIA, General Secretariat, Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, 101, 1-00186 Rome, Italy

Fax: (+39) 6685 2286


Orange Grove Drive, PO Box HG139, Highlands, Harare, Zimbabwe Fax: (+263) 449 7066 1


Colloquium on Apidology

Fund for Women’s Leadership and Representation aims to increase women’s access to leadership positions in public and civil life and to encourage representation in South America and the Caribbean. Areas considered for funding are leadership skills, training, research and advisory services. Contact: Women in Development




18-20 March 1997, Jena Further details from: Professor Dr Erwin

Hentschel, Friedrich Schiller Universitat, Am Steiger 3, D07743 Jena/Thtiringen, Germany Fax: (+36) 41 635 382 J

NEPAL Fourth Asian Apicultural Association Conference 22-27 March 1998, Kathmandu Further details from: Mr K K Shrestha, Conference

Secretary, AAA Conference, ICIMOD, GPO Box 3220, Kathmandu, Nepal Fax: 00 977 524 609/536 747 |

PAKISTAN Third International Congress of Entomological Sciences 18-20 March 1997, Islamabad

Ali Asghar Hashmi, Integrated Pest Management Institute, NARC, Park Road, Islamabad 45500, Pakistan Fax: (+92) 051 240 909

Further details from: Dr

TURKEY World Forestry Congress 13-22 October 1997, Antalya

How to teach beekeeping in Africa 5-10 May 1997

How can we solve the problem of low productivity in East African beekeeping? 19-21 May 1997 Both these courses are organised by and will be held at:

Nijiro Wildlife Research Centre,PO Box 661, Arusha, Tanzania Fax: (+255) 57 8242 or from

Bees for Development

Training in Beekeeping Two year training courses commencing in July Further details from: The Principal, Forestry Training

Institute, Olmotonyi, PO Box 943, Arusha, Tanzania Fax: (+255) 57 227! Attn FTI

TUNISIA Bee Disease Diagnosis 19-30 May 1997, Tunis Further details from: Dr K El Hicheri, Institut de la

Recherche Vétérinaire de Tunisie, Rue Djebel Lakhdar, La Rabta, 1006 Tunis, Tunisia

Further details from: Secretary General, X] World

Fax: (+216)

Forestry Congress, Department of Foreign Relations, Ministry of Forestry, Ataturk Bulvari 153, Ankara, Turkey Fax: (+90) 312 417 9160

UNITED KINGDOM Beekeeping in Rural Development


56 96 92

Beekeeping and Development Meeting

17 November - 13 December 1997, Cardiff University and Njiro Wildlife Research Centre, Tanzania

18-20 April 1997, Lira

Further details from: Ms Glynis Hudson, Professional

Further details from: Egwang Etem, Organiser, c/o PO Box 209, Lira, Uganda

Development Centre, 51 Park Place, University of Wales Cardiff, Cardiff, CF1 3AT, United Kingdom Fax: (+44) 222 874560


UNITED KINGDOM Welsh Beekeeping Convention 5 April 1997, Royal Welsh Showground, Builth Wells Further details from: Mr Les Chirnside, Bryn y Pant

Cottage, Upper Llanover, Abergavenny NP5 9ES, United Kingdom

Development Studies 19

April-5 July 1997, Birmingham

Further details from: Development Studies Course,

Department of Social Studies, Selly Oak Colleges, Birmingham B29 6LQ, United Kingdom

A Bees for Development publication


VIDEO” .>) {


tH FLF Harvesters

MOKOBO Video and Research and NBC

produced by

Directorate of Forestry Namibia, in association with ODA, United Kingdom and Réssing Foundation,

Namibia (1996) VHS. Running time 32 minutes.

Bees for Development price including airmail postage and packing The sound of the marimba accompanies this pleasant and interesting video of beekeeping underway in Namibia. It begins with a honey hunter, removing the stone that acts as a

Available from


doorway for a colony that he has been harvesting for the past fifteen years. We watch as he carefully takes his annual share of the honeycombs and replaces the stone.

introduced. This programme could be useful for a wider audience being newly introduced to the idea of beekeeping.

for Development price 25.00 including airmail postage and packing

The pictures and text produce a useful source of information about Varroa and how to cope with it. The pictures are of high quality and together with well thought-out graphics tell their story very clearly. The sequence of pictures of Varroa and its effect on bees wili be helpful to beekeepers who are unsure how to identify the mite.

Pictures of African beekeeping are used which may lead some to believe wrongly that Varroa is already present South of the Sahara.


Of the a af

la's Hi Oney arye Slerg






FAO, Rome, Italy (1989) Audiovisual programme with filmstrip of 106 frames and booklet in English

The programme is presented in two parts: Part is a description of Varroa disease, what it is and why it poses a threat to beekeeping. Part 2 is technical information, how to diagnose and combat Varroa using chemical or biological methods.


The video then accompanies Derek Sherratt, VSO volunteer, as he travels to schools and beekeeping centres in northern Namibia, demonstrating simple and low-cost methods of beekeeping. Derek’s calm and ‘ practical approach obviously pays off, as he discovers when one of his students is inspired to go home and build his own top-bar hive. A very good portrayal of beekeeping and

Varroasis of the honeybee

or French Available from


Lapiculture en Afrique Equatoriale: Although now a little old this series remains an excellent source of pictures to assist with talks or training sessions about Varroa. It should be used also in countries that are so far without Varroa mite: it provides compelling evidence against honeybee importation and the possibility of introducing this parasite.

Lapiculture en Afrique Equatoriale: le miel, richesse de notre nature FAO, Rome, Italy (1989) Filmstrip of 76 frames and booklet in French. Available from

Bees for Development price 25.00 including airmail postage and packing These pictures explain the origin of honey and the way the Pygmy people collect it in Equatorial Rainforests of Congo. The basics of movable-frame and fixed-comb beekeeping are shown, and honey and other hive products are


d’abeilles, de fleurs et d’apiculture FAO, Rome, Italy (1989) Filmstrip of 82 frames and booklet in French. Available from

Bees for Development price 25.00 including airmail postage and packing These pictures give more detail about nectar and pollen, and their collection by honeybees and harvest by beekeepers. Basic equipment is shown, along with an explanation of the products: honey, wax, and propolis.

These two L'apiculture en Afrique Equatoriale filmstrips are excellent sources of topquality pictures of bees, African honey hunting and beekeeping. Some pictures are common to both sets. The pictures include title frames.



Le miel, richesse A Bees for Development publication



The World-Wide Fundraiser’s Handbook Michael Norton


Directory of Social Change, London, United Kingdom


(1996) 270 pages. Paperback. .

Available from

Bees for Development


price 15.50

Everyone responsible for fund-raising for an NGO or voluntary organisation will appreciate this book - it is crammed full of sensible advice and expert tips for success.

All the main steps along the path to locating funds are described: devising a strategy, writing proposals, different types of donor to approach, and alternative techniques to use direct mail shots, fund-raising events, bliections, and many others. There is no quick way to raise funding - all the successful methods require considerable research, commitment and perseverance. his brilliant book can help to make your Pfforts more effective.

Beeswax Crafts bntributions from Norman

sattershill, David Constable, inda Crouch, Liz Duffin and olly Pinder varch Press, Tunbridge Wells, United Kingdom

996) 80 pages. Paperback. Available from ees for Development price 11.50


his colourful book describes five quite ifferent crafts using beeswax. These are

candle making; modelling; making beauty 4 = creams, soaps and polishes; encaustic art; and wax crayons. An excellent example of encaustic art is shown on B&D’s cover. Each of the five crafts is described by a top expert in the field. With detailed text, assisted by an abundance of colour | photographs, every process is clearly

merase ade




j described.

tA problem for people in some 4







might be to obtain supplies of exactly the specialist materials and equipment that are mentioned in the book. In this case, the authors suggest that you write to them for

details of mail-order suppliers. However another clever and crafty solution is to modify and test the methods and recipes according to the resources you have available. This book will provide you with excellent new ideas for generating more income from your beekeeping. Highly recommended.

Development of training materials in agriculture: a course manual by Anthony Youdeowei and


Joseph Kwarteng

West African Rice Development Association, Bouaké, Céte d'Ivoire (1996) 104 pages. Paperback

Available from


Bees for Development price


This manual aims to help with planning and producing effective training materials Part explains the principles involved in effective 1

writing and editing, arranging good illustrations, preparing for print, producing low-cost materials, publicity and evaluation. Part 2 describes how to apply these principles when producing training guides, newsletters, extension folders and visual aids. The manual is full of sound and practical advice that will help you to communicate your message effectively.

Ex Africa by

Ron Brown

Ron Brown, Torquay, United Kingdom (1996) 112 pages. Paperback. Available from

Bees for Development price 11.50 Ron Brown started beekeeping in Zambia after home He had no knowledge of beekeeping, but within two years was harvesting over 40 kg of honey per hive and selling it at good price. This was with homemade hives and equipment, and Ron never owned an extractor. He describes how he gradually learned ways of handling bees, described by Ron as “these intelligent creatures”, so that during his last few years in Central Africa he never had less than six hives in his garden, even in the middle of towns like Ndola and Lusaka. a swarm arrived at his



A Bees for Development publication


of an excellent meeting held in the Malaysian rainforest in 1995, organised by Makhdzir Mardan and his team at BEENET Asia


B&D 35). An important function ti g was to fo tt ti honey hunting for income generation in (described in th


tropical forests.

This book is a personal account of Ron Brown’s life and teaching career in Africa between 1953 and 1964. It is divided into three parts: Part deals with African bees and beekeeping; Part 2 with a miscellany of ‘African topics’ and Part 3 with Ron Brown's family life in Africa. 1

A similar publication

in many ways, to

F G Smith's Three cells of honeycomb, and Julian Johnston's A nomad amongst the bees, both reviewed in B&D40. We seem to have a new

genre here: “Autobeeographies”?!

Tropical bees and the

environment edited by Makhdzir Mardan, Abdullah Sipat, Kamaruddin, Mohd Yusoff, Ruth Kiew and Mohd Mathieu Abdullah BEENET Asia,

Serdang, Malaysia (1997) 308 pages. Paperback. Available from

Bees for Development price 25.00


Here is a valuable new book packed with interesting facts. It contains 34 essays by a range of international authors. All discuss some aspect of tropical bees in Asia, Africa or the Americas, and fall broadly into four main

categories: ecological, purely scientific, indigenous beekeeping culture, and approaches to beekeeping development. Some essays are very brief, others are long and detailed, and serve as us eful reviews of the sul ject covered. Two such

ical Bees:

examples are om Rinderer’s count of African be les introduced to the Americas (the SO-Cé lled ‘killer bees’! and Eva Crane’s author itative discussi on of ‘Bees, mankind and the environme nt’.

This eclecti c publication is the final puk lished outcome A Bees for Development publication

Reforming world trade: the social and environmental priorities by Caroline LeQuesne Oxfam Publishing, Oxford, United Kingdom (1996) 114 pages. Paperback. Available from

Bees for Development price 6.00 Trade can support livelihoods: production of a commodity for export can generate income, employment and the foreign exchange that poor countries want for development. But trade can also destroy livelihoods, cause environmental destruction, and lead to unacceptable levels of exploitation. Powerful, transnational companies are publicly unaccountable. Their growing strength and mobility have been helped by technological advances, and by the progressive withdrawal of investment controls by governments and by the GATT/World Trade Organisation. These huge companies maximise their profits by exploiting the differences in social and environmental standards that exist between countries. Under these circumstances countries are forced to compete to provide goods at the lowest possible prices.

Around 25% of world trade involves primary products: timber, minerals, tea, coffee. It is many of the world’s poorest countries that are dependent on these exports for foreign exchange. Yet the environmental costs of these commodities are not accounted for in their price.

This book argues that there should be better rules governing world trade, protecting people's basic rights and ensuring proper development.

A number of case studies are described: for example, the garments industry in Bangladesh, and the banana trade in the Windward Islands. Sustainable development is discussed: how can environmental costs be included in private and public policy decisions? Finally the book suggests the reforms needed to make trade fair and sustainable.

Books to Buy is also published on the World Wide Web


Ordering is Easy

An order form is printed in our book list Books te Buy. Otherwise just write us a note of what you want. We will deal with your order as soon as we receive it. If you want to place a large order, then we can provide a quote in advance for payment in sterling or USS.

All our prices include postage and packing costs. Overseas orders are sent by surface mail. If your order is urgent then add 25% to the total order value and we will dispatch it by air mail. All videos and film strips are always sent air mail at no extra cost.


+44 (0) 16007 16167 BY PHONE:

+44 (0) 16007 13648 BY POST:

Nina Gibson, Publication Sales,

Bees for Development, Troy, Monmouth, NP5 4AB, United Kingdom BY E-MAIL: 100410.2631

Ways to Pay CREDIT CARDS Access, JCB, Mastercard or Visa accepted. We need to know your card number, expiry date on card, name on card

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& Development WHEN





B E LG U M |


1-6 SEPTEMBER 1997 General Secretariat APIMONDIA Corso Vittorio Emanuelle Il, 101 |-00186 Rome ITALY Telefax: (+39) 6 685 2286


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More information on APISTAN is available from:

SANDOZ SPECIALITY PEST CONTROL LIMITED SGS House, 217 - 221 London Road Camberley, Surrey GU15 3EY, England Tel. 00 44 1276 25425 Fax. 00 44 1276 25769

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PUROHIT COMPRESSOR ENGINEERING COMPANY 100/876 Maharshinagar Pune 411 037 INDIA Tel: (+91) 212 469 407 Fax: (+91) 212 444 295

Beekeeping & Development is published quarterly by Bees for Development, Troy, Monmouth, NP5 4AB, United Kingdom Telephone. +44 (0) 16007 13648 Fax: +44 (0) 16007 16167 E-Mail: 100410.2631@CompuServe.COM Environmentally friendly paper

Bees for Development ISSN 0256 4424