Bees for Development Journal Edition 57 - December 2000

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BEEKEEPII Peter Paterson from Kenya presented this paper at the Seminar ‘The role of beekeeping in development programmes’ organised jointly by Bees for Development and the Tropical Agriculture Association in April 2000


and materials found throughout most of the tropics and formerly also in Europe and America.

As long as the volume of a bee hive is adequate, hive design will not influence honey production. Good hive design will make management possible and easier for beekeeper.

ii. Movable-comb hives


These are the top-bar hives, where bees build their comb attached to a top-bar that can be lifted out of the hive.

A movable-comb or movable-frame hive enables detailed hive inspection, colony division or selective breeding and queen rearing, as well as providing for ease of honey removal. In frame

iii. Movable-frame hives The frame hive is used world-wide in largescale commercial beekeeping. The Langsti is the original and most widely used but there are countless variations, some are good and some are atrocious. Choice of hive technology should be based on the cost and ease of

hives, the movable frames allow mechanical honey extraction and return of extracted combs to the hive. In the absence of management,

hive design will not alter honey yield. Bee hive technology may be divided into

three types:

production and availability in relation to local honey potential and cash return. These vary according to geographical location and temperament of both bees and beekeeper.

i. Fixed comb hives These include cylindrical bark and log hives and various other hives of many different forms





Fixed comb hive Fixed comb hive

European bee in temperate region |


Top-bar hive '

Top-bar hive |


African bee in tropical region


European bee in temperate region

African bee in tropical region


Relatively to very good





Fairly good Fairly good

Honey/cash return Poor

Relatively to very good Fairly good



Fairly good




Frame hive .

Frame hive

Hive cost and ease of production

Type of bee and area

European bee in temperate region



African bee in tropical region




We bring you 16 pages bursting with fresh news of beekeeping. If you want evidence of how beekeeping can strengthen people’s livelihoods, then read two items in News around the World: Action for Development in Ethiopia and the report from Tecla David of Mozambique. Many beekeepers are now travelling world-wide and Nepal is one of the most popular destinations. Many ask us for information on beekeeping in Nepal. On page six Otto Boecking and Wolfgang Ritter give a report of the honeybee disease situation in Nepal, that also reflects on the impact of the introduction of exotic Apis mellifera. Starting on this page Peter Paterson gives an excellent review of the pros and cons of traditional hives, top-bar hives and movable-frame hives. On page ten, a new way of getting information to the people that most need it is discussed. See Look Ahead for the new dates for Apimondia 2001; Zoom into the Philippines; Grow some loofahs; Learn about a Belgian organisation that has been fair trading in honey for 20 years; and finally, sit back and consider a beekeeping trip to Mars.

Bees for Development has plenty of views to share!

Nicola Bradbear


PROJECT flows, but these dates made no account of local variations. Each beekeeper owned 100-200 hives and, because of the transport system, they were all put together in single apiaries when they were moved from one site to another.


It was the old problem of the Masai keeping too many cattle: it only pays to reduce the number of livestock if everyone else does too.

My recommendation was that apiaries should be made smaller and hives scattered over

The beekeepers may have obtained as much honey by keeping 50 hives as 150. However, because their neighbour, within

a larger area.


bee foraging range, was also keeping 100-200 hives he had to choose to go for the maximum


number of hives he could afford. Thus the hive

technology was right for the area and its economic parameters. The problem was in overstocking.

FIELD EXAMPLES Now will give some examples from the field to illustrate the success, failure or weakness of various bee hive systems in different I


This provides an example of frame hive beekeeping taking over from traditional hives. Success perhaps, but at the expense of the traditional, small-scale beekeeper.





would like to take you to Myanmar had the privilege of spending a month

looked at beekeeping in the Elburz Mountains of Iran and the areas around the


Caspian Sea. Frame hive beekeeping in lran has increased since the mid 1960s and a report in 1986 suggested that there were 1.3 million colonies of honeybees in Iran of which one quarter were in traditional hives. These were

was looking at a beekeeping project that had been supported by FAO ten years previously. It was the most impressive beekeeping project




being kept by 40,000 beekeepers each with 12 and 1,000 colonies. The one _ .#een beekeeper saw who was using fixed-comb, log-type hives was having great difficulty due |

to Varroa. This beekeeper (probably rightly} blamed the migratory frame hive beekeepers

for having introduced Varroa to the previously disease free area. Ebadi in Apiacta 25(3): 90-96 (1990) suggests yields of 10 kg for






have ever seen. South East Asia has

no indigenous Apis mellifera honeybees.

There are several different species of honeybees including Apis dorsata, Apis cerana and

Apis florea. The Myanmar Government had established about 10,000 Apis mellifera colonies hives through various parts of the country. saw many of the apiaries and without exception they were excellent. in frame


a system of migratory beekeeping whereby

Once again the only serious fault could see was the size of the apiaries which held up to 100 hives and should have been a half or a third of those sizes.

the beekeepers, usually with their family, moved around the countryside three or four


SUCCESS WITH FIXED COMB HIVES The existence of traditional hives is testimony to their success. These are fixed comb hives and have until recent times been used throughout the beekeeping world. Traditional hives have the great advantage of being cheap and easily made from locally available materials.

The economics are extremely good. The inputs are time and traditional knowledge, and the outputs are honey and beeswax. Usually there is no cash outlay. The quality of honey made by honeybees is the same regardless of hive design. The care taken in harvesting and handling honey by the beekeeper is what

decides quality. Very good quality honey may be obtained from traditional hives. Market forces and price incentive will encourage a traditional beekeeper to produce overnight clean, selected honey. Nevertheless traditional beekeeping is on the decline. In many areas it is practised far less than 30 years ago, if at all. The main reason for this is theft and this is why large-scale beekeeping is virtually impossible in most of Africa. Sadly, in more populated areas the only safe place to keep bee hives is close

to the homestead. A further current problem with traditional hives is that many are made

from hollowed out logs obtained from large trees. In much of Africa most suitable trees and forests

have now disappeared and it would be a pity for any more to be turned into hives. However there are alternatives as demonstrated by the many traditional hives made from woven grass and various fibre materials. In view of the widespread adoption of this very successful beekeeping practice, great care needs to be taken in suggesting something better.


movable-frame hives and 3 kg for traditional hives. In

this case, frame hive beekeeping involved

times a year following the floral calendar, camping at each apiary in turn. Essentially the system was good and there was an excellent understanding of bee husbandry. The only problem was the rather poor yields that were

Most of what

saw was government-orientated certain amount of military activity in honeybees as well. But the system was working. was also impressed that the |



Myanmar project had ten years previously been given eight motorcycles and three trucks. All were still on the road. There was

The machinery was worn after ten years of hard work but in working order. This was an excellent project. it was worthy of further support but although a new phase

being obtained and this was because of gross overstocking. The beekeepers rely on hired transport for movement of their hives.

a workshop.

The hired transport arrived on a predetermined day to move the hives in anticipation of honey

was approved, it was not ftinded because of renewed sanctions against Myanmar.

ee Fixed comb hive

Bees for Development

Beekeeping & Development 57


The best way of all is 1.25 cm wax starter strip fitted into saw cut. This is the easiest

is endeavouring to promote Langstroth frame hives. The situation in Uganda is much the same:

and cheapest top-bar. It does need a little extra work and care to set up the wax strip but such starters are very reliable.

the long “Johnson” frame hive did not endure. In Rwanda and Burundi, Langstroth frame hives



Unfortunately there has been a move to make top-bars with a ridiculous little wooden protrusion, which is extravagant on wood and is awkward to make.

ee AN

movable-comb, top-bar hive


Bees for Development

SUCCESS WITH TOP-BAR HIVES Top-bar hives have no frames requiring an accurate bee space and therefore their construction is simpler than frame hives. Only the top-bar width needs to be well made and even its width is not very critical so long as there is a good starter guide.

Since the late 1960s top-bar hives have been widely advocated in central Africa. Some have been successful but there are many cases where they have not been. There are too many apiaries in total neglect, probably because these hives and their use were either never understood or there was some serious fault with them, probably the top-bars.

A well made top-bar hive in stationary beekeeping can be used in the same way as a frame hive except for mechanical extraction of combs and the return of empty

combs to the bees. Migratory beekeeping ideally requires wired frames although traditional hives are sometimes migrated in Ethiopia.

The temperament of the African honeybee is such that it is not

Honeybees will very frequently not follow the wooden lips even if they have a smearing of wax. Instead of following the length of the top-bar the bees build across the bars attaching

combs to several bars thereby removing all benefit of movable combs. Top-bar hives do need management. If they are single chamber, as most of them are, they have limitations in volume and so it is very important that they are harvested regularly and also that

excess old or pollen-clogged combs are removed so that there is always room for new comb construction. If management is not happening these old combs can block the way for new comb and honey production.

A potential of top-bar hives, which has not yet been much exploited, is in the use of muilti-chamber top-bar hives. have described this in an article entitled “A Langstroth hive

a certain discouragement to their use. The most serious problem that arises from top-bar hives is that the top-bars are not working. When they do not work it is a design fault. The Greek basket hive had top-bars that were rounded on the underside and this seemed to encourage the honeybees to build their combs at the lowest point. The Kenya top-bar hive was originally made with a V-edge and the bees attached their comb to that quite well.

@ Beekeeping & Development 57



the honeybees are a little milder to work with in Rwanda and Burundi, but even so the use of frame hives is limited and if they were really would have expected to see many

the answer


more of them there.

CONCLUSIONS Frame hives Almost all the frame hives


have seen in Africa

have been project-related in some way, or kept by beekeeping enthusiasts, often expatriate people. am aware of no evidence that frame hives have been adopted by peasant farmers in central Africa, outside of any project subsidisation. |

suggest this is because of the high cost of hives, poor construction and availability, and the high defensiveness of the African honeybee. Frame |

hives are only going to work to advantage if they are well used and understood. If they are badly

made to less than an accuracy of 1.6 mm will be a menace to work with.



with top-bars instead of frames” (Bee World 69 (2) 1988). suggest that this hive is the best of all top-bar hives with a potential of yields of 15 kg or more. It has considerable advantages in ease of construction and |

manipulation especially harvesting.

In development

projects, frame hive technology has not been satisfactory in

central Africa. Frame hives should be

DR Congo Weil managed top-bar hives can give good results. One of the best projects have seen using top-bar hives is in DR Congo. |

One advantage of that project was that the new beekeepers had no experience of beekeeping.

This meant that everything started from scratch and people learned how to use the hives with no preconceived ideas of how they should work.

Cameroon Another good project saw was in North-West Cameroon where top-bar hives were made from |

conducive to much manipulation. Thus if a top-bar hive is not well made it will not be easy to manipulate the bees -

have been used to some good advantage and have seen some excellent honey. suspect that

raffia palms, an ingenious way of making a good hive from cheap, locally-available materials.

advocated only in exceptional circumstances. Traditional hives Traditional beekeeping works very well in the absence of theft and honeybee disease. If it is

working well


would be inclined to lea

it as it is. Fixed comb hives still have an excellent

potential. Thus am very interested in better use and design of fixed comb hives. In particular have in mind multi-chamber fixed comb hives. |


The conclusion must be that properly done, in good conditions, there is no question that top-bar hives can work very well. Top-bar hives that are badly made and carelessly promoted waste a lot of time and resources.

The classic case of this is the European straw skep. The simplest skeps were single chamber hives. Then the idea came in for use of supers whereby a smaller skep was placed on the main skep that

Frame hives in Africa

had a 10 cm diameter hole in the top to let the bees go up into the super. In this way the brood

Frame hives are being used successfully in North Africa, and in South Africa.

chamber need never be disturbed. The principle is that of brood chamber and honey super.

They have been used intermittently throughout Africa with varying degrees of success and failure. \n the 1960s F G Smith promoted frame hives, but despite his team’s extensive work with the

would like to see more experimentation on this principle using any locally available material. Cement, fibre cement, plastic, — corrugated plastic sheeting all have

Tanzania Forest Department there is now no significant use of frame hives in Tanzania. In Kenya, enthusiastic hobbyists have used frame hives successfully over many years but on a very limited scale. Today there is almost

no frame hive beekeeping except for one organisation: Honey Care International that


possibilities. The low cost of such hives is very attractive, as is the ease of management.

The only drawback is that they do not lend themselves to advanced management, but if such management is in fact not happening anyway, that does not matter.

A manned mission to Mars (including landing) will take about two years. A one way

trip will take about eight months, but depends heavily on the trajectory flown. The length of stay on Mars might last one to three months. by Anton G Branz, Germany The crew would consist of two or three members and would need among other things food, oxygen, and water. The freshness of food decreases over time. To eat canned food for this length of time

would be unappetising and can cause physical as well as mental health problems. The weight of such a large amount of food plus its containers would be huge

and oxygen requirements need to be considered.

The required water quantity is somewhat less because of its potential to be recycled, and biological waste can be entrusted to the infinite deepness of space

as a hidden message from Earth!

RIQLOGICAL CYCLES duction of the masses needed above can be reduced by the use of three biological cycles which

have food plants as a central point and we can make use of the symbiosis of plants and humans.

The first loop is the oxygen-carbon dioxide loop. Humans breathe in oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide. Plants take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen. A sufficiently large quantity of plants can be used as oxygen generators, which reduces the required amount of oxygen and related containers considerably.

The second loop is the fruit-compost loop. Humans eat the fruits of plants and leave digested “compost” as fertiliser for the plants, that convert compost to appetising titbits: cabbage, carrot, chard, dry bean, onion, peanut, radish, rice, soya bean, spinach, sweet and white potato, tomato or wheat. And everything is quite fresh. A sufficiently large quantity of plants can be used not only for oxygen production but also

as food producers, which would reduce the quantity of food to be transported.

The third loop is the water loop. Used water can eaned and used for watering plants. Plant soil Jo the cleaning to a certain extent as happens here on Earth, and it becomes drinking water. Part of the water is taken from the plant’s roots and .

released via the leaves (as oxygen is released). This water can be condensed (and after mineral

enrichment of course) used as drinking water.

But why does a beekeeper take a remote interest In a trip to Mars?



the use of fans when they are grown in a closed space like a glasshouse. Some plants need other

of bees was researched during the NASA

means to be pollinated such as insects, hummingbirds or humans. Pollination by humans can be done by using a small brush from bloom

For this purpose"two identical, made: bee one for the actual shuttle flight and one as a reference

to bloom {see B&D

54, page 6) or by applying

vibrations which makes the pollen float and find its way to another bloom.

Nowadays it can be even more modern. Bumblebees can be bought in a cardboard box and put into a greenhouse to do their job. Bumblebees are more cost-effective and reliable than human pollinators. Potlination does not necessarily have a binary result je pollinated or not. There can also be an intermediate result: poorly pollinated by too little pollen. A prerequisite for proper fruit production is proper pollination. Insects do this quite well in nature.

During a long time and distance of space flight one might use astronauts with a little brush in their hand

as pollinators of their own food to avoid dangerous boredom. Pollination by bees in a closed house with transparent walls and ceiling is apparently not possible. An experiment of this kind was done by the

American Biosphere II test installation. In a bee flight room with non-transparent walls and artificial illumination, bees can do their job very well.

FIRST STEPS TOWARDS THE MARS MISSION Survival in a closed bee flight room Successful experiments on the survival of bees isolated from nature in an enclosed bee flight room over a long time were carried out P van Praagh at the Niedersachsischen by


Landesinstitut fiir Bienenkunde in Germany. Bees were fed with sugar solution, plain water and fine ground pollen outside the hive. The harvest was done by the bees directly. A high air humidity caused a high brood rate. Warming impulse was low. The experiment duration was 18 months.

At the Research Centre for Insect Pollination and

References EIJNDE van der,] (1990) Ganzjahrige Ziichtung von Hummelvélkem fiir die Bestaubung in Gewachshausern: eine rasche Entwicklung. ADIZ 6: pp 12-14. PRAAGH van,] P (1975) Light-ripple and visual acuity in a climate room for honeybees (Apis mellifera L). Netherlands Journal of Zoology 25(4): pp 506-515. PRAAGH van,J P; BRINKSCHMIDT,B (1987) Pollen collecting behaviour of Apis mellifera in a bee flight room. In: Eder/Rembold,



Space... 1984.saya


model on the ground.

These ‘bee-tight’ hives had an aluminium case and a transparent cover. Three wooden frames were contained, one with drawn-out comb, and two with comb foundation of the same size but without imprinted foundation ie with a smooth surface.

At one side of the hive were the three frames, on the other side a feeder with sugar syrup.

The space between served as flight room. Additionally there were two ventilation holes, a fan and two thermometers.

addition to the queen there were 3400 worker bees. About 200 cm’ comb were built during this In

space flight and part of the sugar syrup was used.

The queen filled the comb with 35 eggs. They tried to rear these eggs later on the ground but without success. During the flight only a few bees died.

The cell density of newly built combs was 860 cells the per 100cm? in orbit; 800 cells per 100cm’ on ground. After the first trials under micro gravity conditions the bees learned to take off properly, and to fly and land between the feeder and frames.

NEXT STEPS Pollination under micro gravity conditions As well as pure survival

in orbit, pollination of blooms by honeybees or bumblebees under micro gravity conditions has yet to be researched.

Propolis In a bee flight room no propolis can be collected as the neccessary plants or special trees are not . present. Maybe a new breed of trees of bonsai size

might be a solution?

Duration Survival for three years is not a problem for a queen bee. A bumblebee colony has a lifetime of several months. How to achieve the overlapping running of several bumblebee colonies over such a time duration still needs to be investigated.

Beekeeping, “Ambrosiushoeve”, in Hilvarenbeek, Netherlands, similar experiments were done with

Plants and crop rearing tests

bumblebees by Ing J van den Eijnde. Here bumblebees are reared for pollination in glasshouses.

on at NASA: cabbage, carrot, chard, dry bean, onion,

POLLINATION When plants bear fruits they must first bloom and be pollinated. Originally, this was done only by the wind, and plants that are wind pollinated require

Shuttle Mission

Survival of bees under micro gravity The influence of the absence of gravity on the survival, behaviour, and comb building capability

Chemistry and Biology of Social Insects, VerlagJ Peperny, Miinchen, Germany.

PRAAGH van,J P (1992) Towards


controlled-environment room

suitable for normal colony life of honeybees. Journal of Apicultural Research 11: pp 77-87.

Presently tests with the following plants are going peanut, radish, rice, soya bean, spinach, sweet and white potato, tomato, and wheat. Mission constraints are: crew time, shelf life, safety, storage, power, and food processing like flour grinding, baking bread, pressing oil from soya beans.

VANDENBERG, J D et al (1985) Survival, behaviour and comb construction by honey bees, Apis mellifera, in zero gravity aboard NASA Shuttle Mission STS-13. Apidologie 16: pp 369-384.

WITTE,G R, SEGER,J (1992) Hummelmanagement. Unterricht Biologie 174: pp 52-53.

PRAAGH van,J P (1995) Die Feuchtigkeit der Stockluft und die Bruttatigkeit der Bienen (Apis mellifera L) in einem Flugraum.

Pollination of apples in China (Uma and Tej Partap) B&D 54 (2000)

Apidologie 6: pp 283-293.

Successful pollination of apples (Uma Partap), B&D 48 (1998)

Useful reading in B&D

Beekeeping & Development 57


by Otto Boecking' and Wolfgang Ritter?

‘Institut fiir Landwirtschaftliche Zoologie und Bienenkunde der Universitat, Bonn, Germany *Tierhygienisches Institut, Freiburg, Germany

Honeybees are present in Nepal’s temperate mountain region and in the hot, humid, sub-tropical terai region. Indigenous honeybee species are Apis cerana, Apis dorsata, Apis florea and Apis laboriosa. Honey hunting by professional hunters and collective village groups is a long established activity in Nepal, exploiting the giant honeybee Apis dorsata and the rock bee Apis /aboriosa. Beekeeping with Apis cerana is part of Nepal's cultural heritage. The most common type of beekeeping is with Apis cerana in log, wooden box, clay and wall hives, which have fixed combs. Various projects have introduced several types of movable-frame hives, supplemented by training and extension services, in attempts to improve beekeeping management techniques with Apis cerana.

The European hive bee Apis mellifera has been recently introduced, mainly in the Kathmandu Valley. Colonies of Apis mellifera are imported into Nepal in expectation of greater productivity, and to overcome supposed problems with Thai sacbrood disease in Apis cerana. No government .

regulations exist concerning the importation of exotic species.

INDIGENOUS HONEYBEES IN THE HIMALAYAS Since 1993 the Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has supported a project to conserve and utilise indigenous honeybees in Nepal. In 1999 the project was widened to include the Hindu Kush Himalaya Region. The project is managed by Austroprojekt GmbH (Vienna) and based at the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) in Kathmandu. B&D will bring regular features about the wor of the project throughout 2001 and 2002. To provide context for the importance and need for this project, we are starting the series with this summary of the honeybee disease situation in Nepal.

Bee diseases reduce potential


The presence of bee disease is one of the main problems facing beekeepers world-wide. A short survey of the present status of bee disease in Apis cerana, with particular concern for Thai sacbrood virus infestation, and Varroa jacobsoni and Tropilaelaps clareae mite infestation in Apis mellifera beekeeping was initiated by AP!-Promo-GTZ (Germany)


1998. Information and experiences were exchanged with local beekeepers about these diseases and possible control strategies. in March

Apis cerana

An Asian species of honeybee that can build a series of parallel combs and can be kept in hives.

Apis dorsata

Asian species of honeybees. These bees build single combs and cannot be kept inside man-made hives.

Apis mellifera

This is the species of honeybee found naturally throughout Africa, Europe and the Middle East. In recent years European races of Apis mellifera have been introduced to many countries of Asia, including Nepal.

Apis florea Apis laboriosa

Survey This survey was only a short study. The information source was direct inspection for clinical symptoms of randomly selected bee colonies in each apiary. All colonies investigated were in movable frame hives, which allowed a check of the colonies frame by frame. Bees and brood samples were collected for laboratory analysis.

Diseases in Apis cerana Based on clinical symptoms, Thai sacbrood virus, European foulbrood and Varroa jacobsoni were present in the inspected Apis cerana colonies. Thai sacbrood virus was found in three colonies (out of 34 inspected).

Clinical symptoms are not enough to determine which disease actually threatens the bee colonies. This is because many bee diseases show similar clinical symptoms although they have different causative organisms. To determine whether Thai sacbrood virus was the cause of the clinical

symptoms, laboratory analysis was carried out: in two of three cases this confirmed the clinical symptoms. Visiting three apiaries the beekeepers claimed that their colonies suffered from Thai sacbrood infestation. Any clinical symptom could prove the beekeepers’ assumption. In these cases the bee colonies suffered from poor pollen and honey supplies, and the bees were already eating their own brood. In two cases the colonies were being robbed by other colonies. All these cases showed poor management of the colonies by the beekeepers. There are no chemical cures for Thai sacbrood disease, and many beekeepers are treating their colonies with antibiotics, which might increase the development of resistance to bacteria in the future. EFB was found in 11 colonies (out of 34 inspected) and confirmed by laboratory analysis. The infestation level with EFB of all colonies investigated did not reach destructive levels, since the bees themselves try to reduce the disease by hygienic nest cleaning behaviour.

eo Beekeeping & Development 57

DISEASES European foulbrood

European foulbrood (EFB) is primarily caused by the bacteria Mellisococcus pluton. EFB occurs in Apis cerana and Apis mellifera.


This disease is caused by the Sacbrood virus and is found in Apis mellifera.

Thai sacbrood

This disease is caused by the Thai sacbrood virus, and is found in Apis cerana.

Tropilaelaps clareae

This is a mite. It occurs naturally in Apis dorsata and does not cause problems for this species. Tropilaelaps clareae does cause problems when present in Apis mellifera,

Varroa jacobsoni This

is a mite. It occurs naturally in Apis cerana and does not cause serious problems for this species. Varroa jacobsoni does cause problems when present in Apis mellifera.

The incidence of Varroa jacobsoni is low in Apis cerana and it causes no notable damage. Although this ectoparasitic mite regularly infests Apis cerana colonies, many Apis cerana beekeepers in Nepal have never seen a Varroa mite in their colonies, due to the low infestation levels.

Diseases in Apis mellifera During this survey five beekeepers, keeping a total of 155 colonies of Apis mellifera were visited. 14 randomly selected bee colonies were carefully inspected for clinical symptoms of bee diseases.

Based on clinical symptoms, Sacbrood virus, EFB, Varroa jacobsoni and Tropilaelaps clareae were present in the inspected Apis mellifera colonies. All inspected bee colonies were infested

with the Varroa mite, but at very low levels.


This is because the beekeepers treat their colonies with acaricide regularly throughout the whole year. This will create problems in the future. Already it is well known that chemical residues of the treatments accumulate in honey and wax, a basis for the development

of resistant mites. Honey contaminated with chemical residues will not be acceptable for

international markets.

Some of the colonies were highly infested with Tropilaelaps clareae to the extent that

secondary infections had already started to destroy the colonies. Sacbrood disease and EFB were evident. Both diseases, and bees with deformed wings (possibly due to the deformed wing virus) are indications of secondary infections. Laboratory analysis

confirmed the clinical symptoms of Sacbrood virus and Deformed wing virus.

Looking for signs of disease

have during thousands of years of evolution developed balanced host/parasite interrelations with these mites.

Exchange of experiences Only a few of the Apis mellifera beekeepers are using their profession as their sole income

nmercial beekeepers are known to migrate Apis mellifera colonies from the Kathmandu

source, most need additional income resources. Other products like pollen, propolis and wax are

Valley into the terai region, in order to exploit the temporary local nectar flows. Apis dorsata occurs naturally in the terai and is the original host of the mite Tropilaelaps clareae.

not commercialised.

The moment the beekeepers migrate their Apis mellifera colonies into the terai in October Tropilaelaps clareae mites start to infest the Apis mellifera colonies. Moving the colonies back into the Kathmandu Valley, the Tropilaelaps clareae mites are brought into geographical regions where these mites are not endemic.

Beekeepers with Apis mellifera claim at the infestation ul their colonies with

Tropilaelaps clareae is more destructive than the infestation with Varroa. However acaricides that are effective only on Varroa jacobsoni are used extensively without any impact on 7ropilaelaps clareae,

leading to the increasing population growth of this mite. Both mites give problems only , with Apis mellifera beekeeping, since the mites original hosts, Apis cerana and Apis dorsata


The authors are grateful for the help of Ms S Basnet, Dr H Pechhacker, Dr N M Saville, Mr Sharma, Mr K K Shrestha, Mrs M Shrestha, Mr A N Shukla, and all the beekeepers who allowed us to check their colonies for

Beekeepers are not organised in groups and associations, and little or no help is provided by the government. Although information and experience exchange is helpful for any beekeeping

community, ‘competitive thinking’ predominates between the beekeepers (perhaps typical of some beekeepers world-wide). This, and the fact that

colony theft leads to the problem that bee colonies are kept near to the farmers’ houses. Since the foraging range of honeybees (especially Apis cerana) is limited this hinders the bees from

reaching enough pollen and nectar sources during some of the year.

As a consequence the colonies are ‘stressed’ and highly susceptible to diseases like Thai sacbrood virus. Beekeeping with Apis cerana is decreasing. Some beekeepers switch over to Apis mellifera

Bees for Development

critical pest and disease, followed by EFB. The disease tends to be seen in early spring and early autumn. It is often claimed that Thai sacbrood disease destroys the colonies, although this is not always the real reason.

The survey of existing Varroa control methods revealed that there is an urgent need to establish additional and new control methods for use by Apis mellifera beekeepers, since the intensive use of chemical acaricides has limitations.

Conclusions The natural nectar and pollen resources and potentials are not yet fully explored in Nepal. There is a requirement for the expansion of the beekeeping industry.

There is a high demand for training in basic bee management

techniques necessary for the different groups

in hope of greater productivity and to overcome

of beekeepers.

problems with Thai sacbrood disease. However, keeping Apis mellifera colonies

This is especially necessary concerning bee disease control, since the methods used have

in Nepal is possible only with regular use of many chemicals to treat for many bee diseases.

limitations and will produce additional problems due to residues in the bee products.

Some Apis cerana beekeepers showed excellent knowledge about beekeeping management techniques. Their colonies were in good and heaithy condition. Obviously there is a large potential for Apis cerana beekeeping in Nepal. Chemical treatments are not necessary to keep healthy and productive Apis cerana colonies

as long as they have enough pollen and nectar sources during the year.

Thai sacbrood disease is perceived by more than 90% of the Apis cerana beekeepers as the most

Useful reading in B&D How Apis cerana keeps Varroa in check (Otto Boecking) B&D 48 (1998)

bee diseases.

Apis mellifera v Apis cerana in the North of Thailand (H Pechhacker and N Juntawong) B&D 30 (1994)

Also to API-PROMO-GTZ, Germany for initiating the survey and providing partial funding to Otto Boecking.

Zooming in on Nepal B&D 21 (1991)

It is

claimed that beekeeping with Apis cerana

is decreasing among beekeepers because of the frequent incidence of Thai sacbrood virus

disease. There is a high correlation between the susceptibility of colony to disease and poor management techniques. It is necessary to prove that managed colonies provided with enough pollen and nectar sources are as susceptible to Thai sacbrood infection as non-managed ones. This applied research should take place in Nepal. a

Editor’s Update Thai sacbrood disease occurs in cycles. Since this survey, the incidence of Thai sacbrood virus has decreased and is currently not a problem for Apis cerana bees and beekeepers in Nepal. The disease seems to recur in 7-10 year cycles. Beekeeping & Development 57

NES AROUN has 0.6 hectares of land on which he cultivates various crops. Although diligent, Bojjago could not


Action for Development

produce enough food for his household due

He is determined to further expand his beekeeping

in spite of some problems including theft, and

the able-bodied members of his household had

attacks on his bees by predators. He says, “I have realised that in terms of return on input of labour and other resources, beekeeping is more rewarding

to migrate to town in search of employment whilst he and the rest of his family had to survive on relief

than cropping. This is particularly true in our area, where rainfall is unreliable. therefore see my

accessories were supplied. A travelling seminar was organised for 25 beekeepers to visit the apiary at Soddo Farmers Training Centre.

assistance. He began complementing his cropping activities with beekeeping. This has gradually

future in beekeeping.”

As a result beekeeping is gaining momentum. There are 57 beekeepers in nine areas using

With assistance from AFD, Bojjago has significantly increased his beekeeping activities.

Action for Development (AFD) has been promoting beekeeping in its project areas. Farmers were provided with a total of 106 clay hives and 41 hive shades. 22 sets of wooden frames and

four types of hive: a German design of top-bar hive made from bricks, wooden top-bar hives, clay hives and traditional hives. Yield per hive has

increased by up to 15 kg and in 1999 beekeepers associated with the project benefited from 7000 kg of honey. Many farmers can obtain more income from beekeeping than from crop production: up to



(US $250).

Diversification of livelinoods is needed to reduce the vulnerability of farmers to calamities.

A good example is Bojjago Daddo, a farmer living near Wolayta. He heads a household of ten and

MOZAMBIQUE Since 1996 the Rural Women Development Association (AMRU) has been promoting beekeeping as a sustainable income source for women. The project has focussed on providing top-bar hives and protective clothing on loan, as well as offering basic training. Our Association is composed of 55 members, and some have done very well indeed. Last year Maria Codzai harvested 250 kg of honey from her top-bar hives. This honey was sold for US$770, which is about the

same as a primary schoo! teacher earns in one year. Maria has the advantage that she is used to bees, having for many years helped her husband with cropping honey from traditional

hives. Most beekeepers harvest less than half

this amount.

A major problem is providing the hive


If the roof is made from metal it is very expensive and is stolen. If made from plastic it easily gets damaged and leaks water, forcing

the bees to abscond.

Because of these problems we are encouraging our members to own traditional log hives. These seem a better option: they cost only US$1 compared with US$16 for a top-bar


ping & De lop

nt 57

to drought and other hazards. In very bad seasons

begun to reduce is vulnerability.


AFD Annual Report 1999

He has improved the mix of his hives, and now has 25 of different types. Last season he harvested 152 kg of honey, raising 1474 Birr (US$184).


This additional income allowed him a down payment for the purchase of fertiliser and seed, the purchase of a draught ox, purchase of corrugated iron sheets for the renovation of his



house, and payment of school fees for his children.

Bojjago is eager to share his newly acquired skills and fortune with his neighbours. He has already trained three of them in the


+ 37


construction of clay hives.

hive, and the traditional hives last for many years compared with only three years for top-bar hives.

Beekeepers used to carry their honey to Zimbabwe for sale, but now they are very happy that our project is providing a market.

Therefore, although the harvest from a top-bar hive can be 10 kg compared with 7 kg from a traditional hive, the traditional hive

A problem is that about 50% of the honey has a high moisture content (19%) because beekeepers crop the honey before it is fully ripe. We are starting training on better harvesting techniques and co-ordinating thie with a careful selection of the honey bous by the project. We hope we will see an end to this problem.

is more profitable because of the lower investment costs.

Traditional beekeeping using log or bark hives is usually a male activity learnt from fathers and grandfathers. During the war in Mozambique many hives were

Tecla David

abandoned or destroyed but now that peace is established beekeepers are again taking on more hives.

PUERTO RICO Caribbean recovering In 1998 Hurricane Georges hit the Caribbean. It was one of the worst hurricanes in the 20th Century. Many trees were destroyed and Mother Nature is only recovering slowly. Since flowers from trees had become scarce, honey production is below normal levels.

Lewis Medina



Villagers appeal over threat to forests

In August 2000 the Sixth National Meeting on Beekeeping Science and Technology was held at the Universidad Sutal de Chile in Valdivia. Topics included: honey production, sampling and investigation; the current situation of beekeeping in Chile; relationships between the production

Representatives of the forest community of North West Zambia have appealed directly to Vice President, The Right Honourable Lt Gen C Tembo MP to resolve their dispute with the Government's Forestry Department over forest tenure rights and village livelihoods. International concern about Zambia's traditional beekeepers, village based wood craftsmen and miombo woodlands has been increasing and the issue raised at two major

and consumption of honey; bee health and technology; and the production of by-products of beekeeping.

Miguel Angel Meira Caamano

President of the Organising Committee



USA: International Association for the Study of Common Property 8th Biennial Conference attended by more than 500 international specialists;

Se bdapereeaein 1992 to ee Ta


@ UK: World Wide Fund for Nature/Forest Stewardship Council conference in London attended by nearly 1,000 NGOs and trade representatives. Muzama Crafts and North West Bee Products, the well-known community-owned, fair trade companies whose products are independently certified by the UK's Soil Association, are at the centre of the dispute. They featured as day long case studies at the “Alternative trade and ecolabelling in miombo woodlands conference” in June. Forty representatives from forest communities and environmental organisations joined alternative trade and ecolabelling experts from the miombo region of southern Africa at the

conference in Kapombo. More information ia available at


hi Mukula Trust Extent of miombo woodland

EBB = Distribution of miombo woodland Source: Desanker, P.V. and Pretince, I.C. 1994. Miombo - a vegetation dynamics model for miombo woodlands of Zambezian Africa. Forest Ecology and Management 69, 87-95






Educating girls before they drop out of the schooling system can make a vital contribution to the elimination of poverty in rural Africa. If women have a good grounding in agricultural knowledge they are better able to run productive farms, to raise healthy, well-nourished families and to secure an education for their own children. How can we reach this group? Existing agricultural extension services, which in any case tend to be under-resourced and fail to meet the demands of the poorer sectors of the farming community, often marginalise women. Girls are often removed from primary school before completion.

Where economic necessity requires families to choose which children to support in education, it is rare for sisters to receive priority over brothers.

Working in Kenya, The DFID Livestock Production Programme has supported a project bringing together extension agents, community-based organisations, an educational NGO, a media NGO and extension researchers, to make a concerted effort to find out from poor households what they need to know about livestock, and then find the best way to deliver that information. By allowing disadvantaged groups to highlight the gaps in their knowledge and to suggest the topics on which they would like to receive information, the project is researching how best to respond flexibly to real need in the community. Farmer groups identified previously ignored livestock species, such as rabbits and bees, as being important sources of income and nutrition for poorer families, and particularly for landless farmers and women. Because of the unique nature of this project - not tied to any particular agricultural research institute - livestock information can come from the most appropriate source and therefore respond to the needs of the livestock rearers themselves.

The information has been presented using the cartoon character “Wambui” in an illustrated storybook style. Wambui is a young girl living with her mother and baby sister on a typical smaltholder mixed farm. She sets out to soive the family’s problems by talking to her neighbours and to the local extension officer. The stories are set in the project’s pilot location Embu District in Kenya. The project has been running for eight months. It has already mapped formal and informa! information exchange networks, and community information needs have been identified. Six different booklets have been delivered in the pilot location, each with a print-run of 6000. Three more are in preparation. School teachers have formed focus groups to give feedback on the impact of booklets on children, and repeat-transect surveys have shown measurable change in knowledge amongst adults following delivery of the booklets. The booklets have proved very popular with all the groups. A measure of popularity is that some of the schools insisted on the children returning the booklets so that they may be retained as a schoo! resource — instead the project provided more copies.

approach to information supply, it is possib to deliver knowledge effectively and sustainably in support of the very diverse livelihood activities pursued by the rural poor. “Wambui” has had considerable impact on farming communities even as a one-year, low-cost pilot-project. Based on this success there is a need to explore further opportunities for contributing to poverty elimination by linking farming information to the delivery channels used by rural education and healthcare services. We are pleased to mention that this Wambui Project took second place in the DFID Research Award Competition.

DFID is the UK Government’s Department for International Development. This project is part of the Livestock

Production Programme.



The Wambui Project discovered that people wanted more information on beekeeping. In response to this Bees for Development was commissioned to prepare appropriate text for one of the booklets. This 12-page booklet shows Wambui finding out how important

Analysis of the social networks and communication channels in the area presented new routes for delivering information. The project is researching the effectiveness of delivery through primary schools, churches, women’s groups, and other informal organisations as well as through the established government extension service. These alternative channels are traditionally used and trusted by the poor as sources of

of this excellent booklet. If you would like to receive one, write to us at the address on page two. Recipients will be chosen from entries

information important to their livelihoods.

received by 28 February 2001.

@® Beekeeping & Development 57

The booklets have included technical messages from Medical Research Council (UK) studies and show that human health messages can be communicated alongside agricultural information. The project team believes that by taking this cross-sectoral

bees are to everyday life. Pollination, the production of honey and beeswax, and value-added products are the

storyline of this illustrated text. Bees for Development has 50 copies



by Cleo Cervancia, University of the Philippines,

Los Bafios, Philippines

ThePhilippines archipelago stretches 1,880 km North to South. There are about 7,150 islands and rocks to the Philippines, with a combined land area of 301,000 km’ spread over the 2.2 million km? of belonging water within the exclusive economic zone.The long coastline is approximately 32,400 km. Three seas surround the Philippines: the China Sea on the West and North, the Pacific Ocean on the East, and the Celebes Sea and the coastal waters of Borneo to the South. The Philippines has a humid equatorial climate with high temperatures and heavy rainfall. Human Population


The bee mite Varroa jacobsoni remains a threat to beekeeping with

75 million.

Apis mellifera. \ndustrialisation further reduces forage for the bees.

Tropical with a single rainy season between May

and November.

Main agriculture coconuts,

maize and rice.


There are three indigenous species of honeybees: Apis cerana, Apis dorsata and Apis andreniformis. The introduced European Apis mellifera is used extensively in commercial beekeeping. There are about 3,000 colonies of Apis cerana and 5,000 colonies of

Apis mellifera. Other bee genera are Borbus sp, Trigona sp,

and Xylocopa sp.

Bee Products Honey

Beekeeping Association a

national beekeeping network Beenet Philippines Foundation Inc was established in 1995 with the aim of co-ordinating national efforts, activities and programmes to protect, improve, strengthen and develop the bee industry.

Today there are about 200 members all over the Philippines. The network holds annual conferences with presentations of bee

research, exhibits of bee products, and technofora. Members discuss current issues and draft strategies for further development of the bee industry. There are ten co-operatives concerned with bee product marketing.

is a popular product. The average production and Apis mellifera are 2.5 kg and 25 kg cerana Apis of honey is US$6 per kg. respectively. The price

Bee Research The

Other bee products are pollen (US$20 per kg), royal jelly, propolis, beeswax and candles. Cosmetic products including soap, honey facial mask and lip balm are also prepared.

1997-1999. A breakthrough has come in the establishment of the taxonomic status of Apis cerana through the morphometric

per colony of

len and nectar SOUFCES The

major pollen and nectar sources are

Acacia sp, Ageratum conzoides, Alternanthera tenella, Amaranthusviridis sp, Callistemon citrinus, Centella asiatica, Citrus sp, Cocos nucifera,

research thrust is on the genetic diversity of Philippines honeybee species, bee botany and pollination biology. A total of 22 research projects were completed in universities from

mtDNA studies (Tilde et a/, 1999; Delarua et a/, 1999; Villafuerte, 1999). At least four distinct populations of Apis cerana have been identified. There are: the Palawan Group, the Luzon Highland, the Luzon Lowland, and the Luzon + Visayas Cluster.

Mimosa pudica, Moraceae, Muntingia calabura, Pithecellobium dulce, Psidium guajava, Pterocarpus indicus, Rosaceae, Tridax procumbens,

The University of the Philippines at Los Bafios, St Louis University, Benguet State University, and Mariano Marcos State University regularly offer training courses on beekeeping. A Beekeeping Diploma Course is also offered by Mariano Marcos State

Urticaceae and Zea mays.


Coffea sp, Diplocycios sp, Erythrina sp, Euphorbiaceae, other Graminae species, Leucaena feucocephala, Merremia sp, Mimosa invisia,

Problems encountered The

occurrence of El Nifio and La Nina

adversely affected the vegetation. Consequently there was also a decline in the bee populations and produce.

Extension Programmes

Government institutions, for example the Department of Science and Technology, and the Department of Agriculture, give support to beekeeping research and extension. Figure 1 Apis cerana apiary Figure 2 Training course at the University of the Philippines


Cleo Cervancia

References Delarua,P; Tilde,A C; Simon,U; Moritz,R F (1999) Mitochondrial DNA analysis of Apis cerana in the Philippines. Heredity (in press).

Tilde,A C; Fuchs,S; Koeniger,N; Cervancia,C R (1999) Morphometric diversity of Apis cerana F within The Philippines. Apidelogie (in press).

Dr Cervancia is Vice-President of the Asian Apicultural Association - read more on page nine.

Villafuerte,L S (1999) Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) polymorphism in the Asian honeybee (Apis cerana F) in the Philippines. MSc thesis, University of the Philippines at Los Bafios,

Beekeeping & Development 57



MIEL MAYA HONIG “There are people behind honey” “Fair Trade is an economy in the service of men, and not men in service of the economy” Miel Maya Honig is a small, Belgian non-for-profit organisation that works in partnership with marginalised

beekeepers organised in co-operatives. This partnership respects the Fair Trade criteria, of which the principles are: a fairer price for honey, an advance payment to the producers, a long-term relationship and collective organisation of the producers.


Miel Maya Honig started working 25 years ago with beekeepers in Guatemala. As a consequence of the repression in Guatemala in 1982, the activity shifted to the other side of the boundary, to the south of Mexico (Chiapas). Now 500 beekeepers and their families (3000 people), benefit from the action of Miel Maya Honig in Guatemala and Mexico.

Maya Fair Trading annually imports approximately 100 tonnes of honey, from Mexico and Guatemala. 50% of the Maya honey is sold on the Belgian market.

The remaining honey is exported to France, Norway, Switzerland and The Netherlands. Maya Fair Trading sells jars of muiltifloral, butter, and orange blossom honey; honey sweets, lollipops and cookies; and honey beer. On 20 October 2000 Maya Fair Trading organised a seminar in Brussels, Belgium about fair trade. Participants were introduced to how Maya Fair Trading operates, with a presentation from each “link” in the chain:

producer, exporter, importer, quality controller,

manufacturer and distributor. Next, participants chose between two workshops: Workshop / discussed the modalities of fair trade: What is a fair price? How can we fix and

apply it? Is a fair price the answer to the needs of producers? One presentation was a study of beekeeping


“e809 EQuirs 4UITA

production costs of 11 co-operatives in Latin America. I/




discussed the

Workshop development potential of fair trade: What are the Ae opportunities or threats concerning the wholesale distribution of fair trade products? The Proceedings of the te VENORED) 20 Seminar will be OctoBg sa RUHR 2000 magi SOW published in January, IMERNATONA in French, Dutch and Spanish languages. Miel Maya Honig asbl is the organisation in charge of development education and Maya Fair Trading asbl/ is its commercial counterpart. j



For more information please contact: Miel Maya Honig/ Maya Fair Trading, Rue du Mont 13, 4130 Esneux, Belgium

E-mail Website



My name is Krasimir Nikolov from Bulgaria. am 26 years old. like bees and have been working with them since was seven. am looking for a job as a beekeeper. If someone is interested please write to me c/o Bees for Development.

Award winning Beekeepers’ Safaris encourage exchange of ideas and on-going contacts, friendship and support between





MARKETS FOR HONEY AND WAX We have asked Bees for Development to help us find a market for our honey and wax available for export. If you can help us please contact us c/o Bees for Development.

Major Makwati, Zambia.

BEE BOOKS NEW AND OLD 10 Quay Road, Charlestown, PL25 3NX, UK,

beekeepers from different countries.

(Safari is the Swahili word for journey) Safari to Tobago and Trinidad 11- 21 February 2001 Safari to Tanzania 20 November -.5 December 2001 Details from Bees for Development B&D production is supported by advertisements We offer excellent rates and advertisers can reach readers in more than 100 countries. Advertisements: quarter page, two-colour costs 65; a full page 200. Request our rate card for information on colour and cover prices.

Notice Board items cost only 0.50 per word. Enclosures: the cost of insertion and distribution

for your new and second-hand books. Telephone 01726 76844 or

of flyers is 50

(Prices subject to VAT in EC countries)

® Beekeeping & Development 57

per kilogram.


THE LOOFAH APICULTURAL VALUE Female flowers are moderate to good nectar suppliers; male blooms yield a good pollen value. The loofah’s profuse and continuous blossoming during rainy periods provides excellent bee colony build-up and maintenance forage. Recommended for planting to increase honey production.

MOST POPULAR SPECIES Ridged loofah Luffa acutangula Common loofah Luffa cylindrica (L) Roem

NONYMS vumnmon loofah:

Luffa aegyptiaca, Poppia fabiana


Estopajo, coladera, meocoton, calabazo, quingombe (Latin America) Schwammkuerbis (German) Petole (French) Bucha dos pautistas (Brazil) Soo-qua (Chinese) Hechma (Japanese)

FAMILY Cucurbitaceae

DISTRIBUTION A native of the Asian tropics, loofah is found warm tropical, sup-tropical and throughout ‘ perate areas.

UsES Widely utilised as handy bath accessories, skin exfoliators and pot scrubbers, loofah offers



Loofah flower

B&D's Correspondent in Grenada

a renewable alternative to the endangered sea sponge. During World War Ii the durable fibre was used in surgical operations, as a filter in the Navy’s steam and diesel engines, as cushioning in vehicle and tank seats and because of its insulating properties, in Army helmet linings. Loofah gourds can also be processed into pot

dyes and can be embroidered for the crafting of decorated bags, place mats and garments. This versatile plant has served for hundreds of years as a healing agent. Loofah seeds are emetic and purgative, and the leaves are used by the Chinese in a treatment for skin diseases.


Jorge Murillo-Yepes

References Crane,E; Walker,P (1984) Pollination Directory for World Crops. BRA, London, UK. Crane,E; Walker,P; Day,R (1984) Directory of Important World Honey Sources. IBRA, London, UK. Kelly,C; Shobe,J (1981) For Luffa or Money! The Mother Earth News Magazine 68: pp 126-127.

Laurence,G A (1976) Common Bee Weeds of Trinidad and Tobago.

w és he

a preparation made from loofah is sold

as a skin softener. According to a sixteenth century Chinese herbalist, “The fresh fruit is considered to be cooling and beneficial to the intestines”. In many parts of the tropical world, young loofah gourds (less than 10 cm long) are harvested for culinary purposes. The ridged loofah is considered the tastiest of all, as the common and other varieties occasionally develop a bitter taste. Tender loofah fruits can be added raw to salads or cut up in soups in the same way as okra. The real gastronomic utility for this vegetable ties in its ability to substitute for zucchini or squash, or for egg plant in parmigiana. In Japan, one of the world’s biggest producers and consumers, the fruit is sliced and sun-dried. In India the gourds are popular in curries, while Malaysians relish the young leaves, raw, and the Annamese people of China like to eat the male flowers and flower buds. The blooms can be dipped and sautéed. Jams and jellies are prepared with the flowers.

A good quality oil can be extracted from the seeds to be used in the manufacture of cosmetics and medicines.



develop singly on the plants stem, while their male counterparts grow in dangling bunches. After pollination the male flowers drop, while the females remain attached to the developing fruit.

holders, doormats, gloves, sandals, caps, hats, waistcoats, stuffing for mattresses and saddles and have many other uses. Loofah readily takes


Loofah, luffa, Chinese loofah, vegetable sponge, dishcloth gourd Jinghi, tochon (West Indies)

by Jorge Murillo-Yepes

First of all we admit the loofah is not a tree: it is a fast growing, annual, climbing plant with tendrils that grab out eagerly for support. However it can be as big as a tree, up to 30 metres!

deep green foliage, composed of large, hirsute, long petioled leaves with seven paimeated lobes.


large (up to 12 cm in diameter), lemon yellow, with five spreading petals. The female flowers of this monoecious plants (both male and female blooms on the same vine)

FRUITS: once pollinated the vegetables rush toward maturity, growing at a rate of up to 4cm a day. When dried and peeled the mature, gourd-like fruit reveals a fibrous, spongy skeleton, filled with rows of black seeds. Some Luffa cylindrica varieties produce vegetable sponges 80cm in length and 25 cm diameter. FLOWERING:

copious blossoming through rainy periods and under irrigation. Luffa acutangula’s flowers unfurl in the evening, while those of Luffa cylindrica open to the rays of the morning sun.


light amber, slightly aromatic.

PRACTICAL NOTES A sturdy plant which is easily grown, even on poor soils. Loofah does not tolerate sustained temperatures below 18°C. Relatively resistant to mildew. The seeds remain viable for several years when stored under dry conditions.

Little,E L; Wadworth,F H (1964) Common Trees of Puerto Rico and

Like some loofahs? Jorge has kindly provided some

Peace Corps(1983) Important Honey Plants of the Tropics. Peace Corps, Washington DC, USA.

loofah seeds to

the Virgin Islands.

PEREZ-ARBELAEZ,E (1990) Plantas Utiles de Colombia. USDA (1964) Handbook 249, Volume 1.

Bees for Development. Write in if you would like a few. Available only while stocks last!

USDA (1974) Handbook No 449, Volume 2. Beekeeping & Development 57



Income we receive from orders supports the Bees for Development Information Service for beekeepers in developing countries. Please buy all your bee reading and viewing from us! A complete list and description of all the books, posters and videos available from Bees for Development is on our website at

The Birder’s Bug Book

primarily focused on well-known social insects. Rather, Gilbert Waldbauer explains

Gilbert Waldbauer


290 pages Paperback Available

from Bees for Development price 13.50 Order code W010 If you like the birds and the bees, then here is a book for you. Gilbert Waldbauer

is Professor Emeritus of Entomology at the

University of Illinois. Hi Ss book is a blend of anecdotes, ornithology nd entomology,

why insects tend to gather in groups. Some, like mayflies, come together simply because they emerge from the water in the same place, at the same time. Others like locust swarms are loosely

insects. Insects

mimicking bird droppings to protect themselves from attack; birds using ants to deter external parasites; birds eating bees; insects fighting back. Dozens of amazing feats of nature to appeal to anyone interested in natural history.

A well presented book full of line drawings and

38 colour pictures.

A nice touch is the woodpecker on each facing page that appears to be woodpecking if you flip through the pages.

How Bugs Find Strength in Numbers Gilbert Waldbauer


264 pages Hardback. Available

price 19 An engaging book of

insects. Although it does contain some


readable text.

The Beekeepers Annual 2001 John Phipps (editor) —


UCN Fores Canmerion Programe

Non-timber Forest Products. value, uve ond manarereet ineues ln Africa, senamiples trom Lata America

The outcome of a



167 pages

price 17 Order code C400

group. An interesting, entertaining and

160 pages Paperback Available

from Bees for Development price 9 Order code P160 THE

An illustrated


calendar for beekeepers and a compendium of

working for bees and beekeeping. In addition there are

My first year as a beekeeper; Genetics for the bee breeder; Experiencing the Africanised honeybee; From architecture of skeps to father’s hat pudding (book

reviews); When smoke got in your eyes.

The Proceedings of this Symposium held in September

workshop held

in Kenya in 1994. At the workshop people working with non-timber forest products (NTFP)

exchanged information and analysed the potential for NTFPs in forest

management and conservation strategies. The text includes a summary of workshop discussions, papers and case studies from Africa and Latin America. Overviews of 15 African countries relate forest cover and

knowledge about UK associations

2000 are currently

Details of how to obtain

information on

in production.

bees, it is not

your copy will appear in B&D 58.

2) Beekeeping & Development 57


Bees for Development

in Development

anecdotes about

Awimbo and A

weaves a silken tent to house the whole

Sustainable Livelihoods: Exploring the Role of Beekeeping




society, such as the colony of caterpillars that

from Bees for Development

Order code

S A Crafter,

Paperback Available from

many interesting articles including: The king with the. beautiful dark queens;

Millions of Monarchs, Bunches of Beetles

Value, Use and Management Issues in Africa, including Examples from Latin America

organised. Yet others work as a co-operative

describing various

interrelationships between birds and

Non-timber Forest Products:

deforestation rate, policy and legislation, and the key NTFPs from each country. Bee products are mentioned.

Le api di carta Marco Accorti


283 pages

Paperback, In Italian Available from Casa Editrice Leo S Olschki, Viuzzo del Pozzetto, 8,

50126 Firenze, Italy E-mail A comprehensive bibliography in Italian of literature



on honeybees and


Books are in English unless stated otherwise


PROPOLIS Chunbo International Importers and distributors of bee products want to import a total of 100 tonnes of crude propolis

annually from beekeepers world-wide.

Specifications are: Purity - over 50% Total flavonoid content - over 5%

Heavy metal content- below 10 ppm Colour - red, brown or green (grey may

be accepted on inspection)

Prices negotiable in accordance with purity and quality


HONEY EXPERT TO BE BASED IN NEW DELHI INDIA / NEPAL WITH DABUR INDIA LIMITED ‘We are amongst India’s top five FMCG companies with interests in Natural Health Care, Personal Care, “oods and Pharmaceuticals. We are also the largest Honey marketer on the Indian sub-continent. To further develop the Honey market in India and create

Prior international experience would be necessary

a market for

speciality Organic Honey and related products around the world, we require a qualified full time person well versed in the following areas: ®

Supervision of Honey purchasing/procurement


Honey processing (preferably through CTC equipment) Must have prior experience in this area




Should be able to guide and impart expertise on Honey to Dabur India Ltd

An internationally competitive package will be offered to the right candidate.

exciting environment send your CV within 10 days to: Ms Madeleine Heam

ie frames, queens, bee hives etc

Dabur India Limited

Good understanding for international honey market

Lion Court

A self-driven person who will not wilt under tough circumstances

you can deliver on the above

and would like the challenge of working and living in an

Development of other Honey related products

for exports and related laws


Farnham Road Bordon


Daur Beekeeping & Development 57


Remember to

mention Beekeeping & Development when responding to advertisements




November 2001

South Africa has great pleasure in inviting beekeepers and members of the bee community from around the world to share in the celebration that is APIMONDIA 2001 The Apimondia Congress sets out to attract a wide range of people: from the hobbyist beekeeper to the large-scale commercial beekeeper; representatives from the seed and fruit industries; those in development programmes, trainers and extension workers; as well as pollinators, packers, equipment vendors, apitherapists, entomologists and academics, farmers, growers and their representatives.

The Opening Ceremony featuring traditional African entertainment will be an event to remember. Technical sessions will run in parallel throughout the Congress. Poster presentations will remain on show, together with an exhibition with the theme Bees and beekeeping on the African continent. Local honey will be displayed in a competitive honey show, with honey tasting.

Want to take part?

You cannot begin too early to seek funding for your own attendance. Make your interest known in good time to the Congress Organisers (see address below), and make sure you stick to all the deadlines for submission of papers and registration. If you have a paper accepted for presentation, you have a better chance of locating funding from your local donors. REGISTRATION DELEGATES

‘Early Bird’ fee (up to 15.05.01)

Late fee







(after 15.05.01)

from Apimondia

member countries


You are invited to

from non-member

Submit a paper and/or a poster (by sending a 300-word abstract) for consideration in one


of the seven plenary sessions:




Tour Operators

Bee biology

Recreational Tours, PO Box 52277, Saxonwold, 2132 South Africa, E-mail will assist with pre- and post-congress sightseeing and technical tours, accommodation, itinerary planning, car hire and

Beekeeping economy Beekeeping for rural development Bee pathology

Beekeeping technology and equipment Pollination and bee flora

Participate in discussions For example, The Beekeeping for Rural Development Standing Commission is highly active in every Apimondia Congress. The theme of the Commission at the 2001 Congress is “Beekeeping against poverty”. Make an exhibition stand at ApiExpo 2001 This commercial trade fair will feature the latest apicultural technology, agro-chemical products and services, hive products, value added products, country and regional stands. Win a gold, silver or bronze medal by participating in any of the 12 categories of contest — from beekeeping websites to films, videos and slides on beekeeping subjects! Submit your favourite recipe in the ‘Honey recipe competition’ and receive a copy of other delegates’ recipes from around the world.

Join in the social functions — an ‘Icebreaker Reception’ on the first evening — an evening slide/film/video show of selected contest entries — an ‘Out of Africa’ evening at a beachfront barbecue hosted by the City of Durban.

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companions’ outings. Accommodation in Durban during the Congress varies from R310 to R1465 per person per night; hotels are within easy walking distance of the Congress venue.

Current Exchange Rate

(at time of going to press)

Attending Apimonda


US$ = R7.22,


Euro = R6.33


Please contact the Congress Organisers who will send you

a copy of the final announcement containing all the details you need. 6000 people from over 60 countries attended Apimondia 1999 in Vancouver, Canada. South Africa looks forward to welcoming you in 2001.

APIMONDIA 2001 Conference Planners APIMONDIA

PO Box 82 (66 Queen Street), Irene 0062, South Africa +27 (0) 12 667 3681 Tel Fax +27 (0) 12 667 3680

E-mail Website


eekeepin EVEL


Beekeeping& Development is published quarterly by Bees for Development, Troy, Monmouth, Telephone +44 (0) 16007 13648 Fax +44 (0) 16007 16167 E-mail Website:

NP25 4AB, UK

Printed on environmentally friendly paper. ISSN 1369 9555

Bees for Development 2000