Bees for Development Journal Edition 77 - December 2005

Page 1


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dean piewsdas We hope that 8fD Journal encourages you in your beekeeping endeavours wherever you live. While this edition is in press, beekeeping meetings are underway around the world: in Bangalore, India the International Beekeeping Congress; in Trinidad the Fourth Caribbean Beekeeping Congress, and in December in El Salvador, the Central American Seminar and Workshop on Stingless Bees.

Useful meetings do not need hundreds of participants and an international audience. On page 6 Nelson Abila tells us of Busho Serenity Foundation's one-day workshop to explain the techniques of beekeeping to enhance sustainable livelihoods to a small, local audience. The positive outcomes were important recommendations and more people aware of the benefits of beekeeping.





Inside information


Eco-friendly handling of rock bees




his associates at the Centre for Bee Development in Wardha, India, inform us about a new system they have developed that enables them to harvest from Apis dorsata without harming the colony (page 3). On page 11, Pam Gregory responds to a recent request for more

Workshop report


Trees Bees Use


information about feeding pollen to bees.

Petrified Honey?


We visit The Crossroads of the Americas - Panama - for a country report by Dr Dewey Caron

Zoom in on Panama


Also in this issue Dr G

N Paliwal and

on page 9 and hear about sweet profits from Guatemala on page 10. Beekeepers in Panama have been working with Africanised honeybees since 1982 and in Guatemala since 1986. The management of these honeybees will surely be discussed during the Caribbean Congress mentioned above. We plan to bring you reports in

the next issue of BAD Journal.



Beekeeping in

Sweet profits


Practical beekeeping: pollen feeding


Notice Board

Decline? - Your help urgently required

is widely recognised that beekeeping is experiencing difficulties in Europe and that there are many reports of decline in the numbers of both colonies and active beekeepers. Our aim is to build a broad picture of these reported declines across the continent. It is hoped that the results will enable us to

11 &


Look and Learn Ahead


News around the World





understand where the problems lie, and to help predict and overcome problems in the future.

However, to do this, we need your help. We are looking for national or regional data/statistics that can show, over at least the fast 30 years (longer if at all possible), the numbers of active beekeepers, the

numbers of managed colonies, and annual honey production. any way, please make contact with our research team.


you think you can be of assistance in

Stuart Roberts Centre for Agri-Environmental Research, School of Agriculture, University of Reading, UK

The cover picture was taken by Kennedy Sabas Haule from ifakara in Tanzania, during

beekeeping training held in October 2005. Kennedy, who is responsible for Project Development within the Miombo Beekeepers’ Association, writes: "It has always been good to know what is happening at the other side of the world as beekeeping and the environment are matters of concern for all of us. was fascinated with the concrete hives from The Gambia in BfDU 76 and trees saved from destruction. am looking forward to trying the hives. Modernising beekeeping is a priority for the sake of better quality and quantity, and beeswax is not utilised. Demand for honey is increasing partly because of the medicinal value accredited by society, and it has been recommended by some health officials for HIV/AIDS affected people to take honey regularly to inhibit opportunistic diseases. Beekeeping could play a crucial role in poverty alleviation: |

Bees/orDevelopment Journal


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average per capita expenditure in our project area averages 23,000 TSh per annum = 1,123 TSh). One litre of honey is (1 US$ sold from 2,000 to 4,000 TSh."

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Bees/o; Development Journal 77

PRACTICAL BEEKEEPING Eco-friendly harvesting of rock bees G N Paliwal, Sunita Paliwal and D

B Tembhare,

Centre for Bee Development, Wardha, India

Distribution The rock bee, Apis dorsata is an astonishing bee species. It amazes humans due to its unique nesting pattern, migration, ferociousness and huge deposits of honey. It is an indigenous species of south-east Asian countries. In India, noticeable rock bee wealth occurs in many states

including Andhra Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Orissa, Uttaranchal and West Bengal.

Enforced relocation The ample nectar and pollen of wild plants during March to June lure thousands of colonies to nest on inaccessible trees and steep cliffs near the lakes, streams and rivers in forest and hilly areas. The same phenomenon is observed in the plains in the cropping season of October to December. During these periods, rock bees take care of their brood and store honey from the abundance of blooming vegetation in their areas. Due to scant rains and unwarranted human interventions in the last decade, our native forests and plains no longer offer safe homes for rock bees. For better shelter the victimised colonies relocate from

their original grounds to new places. Here they may occupy religiouslyprotected trees like Ficus religiosa and Ficus bengalensis or man-made

structures including water-tanks, bridges, buildings or factories in villages and other populated localities.

A simple kit consisting of three sets of bee suits (Figure 1), (denim jeans), gloves, knives, buckets, re-chargeable torch, a 36 m tape-rope, a 25 m rope ladder, string, sieve, tub and containers (Figure 2) has

Honey and wax from rock bees For many years tribal people have been harvesting rock bees using destructive methods. Squeezed honey is sold in jocal markets. The income gives each harvester a

Seasonal livelihood of

US$30-40 per year. This honey is known as ‘forest honey’ and is a major contributor to the

Indian honey market

(Atwal, 2000). To harness the natural potential of rock bee wealth ina

scientific manner, we felt


need to harmonise the

production system by analysing conventional and earlier

scientific efforts (Mahindre, 1983; Ghatge, 1988). We conducted the necessary research and field trials in central India between 1994 and 1996. We named the system Sewagram Nisarg Technique of Rock bee Management ot SNTRM. It has proved simple, appropriate, easy to adopt, feasible, low-cost and eco-

Figure 1. Bee suits are part of the simple kit that is provided for the honey artisans

friendly. Adopting it, the artisans gather plenty of good quality honey and gain a sustainable livelinood

(Paliwal, 2003).

New system

been designed for handling rock bees. One set is provided to each group of 4-5 honey artisans. Darkness makes rock bees less active and reduces the nuisance of stinging. Therefore, our teams reach rock bee

sites during the evening with the necessary kit. First, a thick rope is secured on the target tree bearing the rock bees. The nesting positions of all the accessible colonies are pinpointed carefully using the torch. The artisans wear the bee suits and climb up the tree with the help of a rope. In the case of cliffs, water tanks and buildings, a portable rope ladder is used. The socks, gloves and helmet are put on and the honey hunter moves nearer the nest. A bucket containing the sharp knife is pulled up on the rope and kept close at hand. In rock bee nests, most of the honey is accumulated in a honey area, followed by the crescent-shaped pollen area and a widely-extended lower brood area. On closer study of both active and deserted rock bee nests we identified a unique feature. This is that the ripened honey ‘in bulk' (70-80% of the honey stock of each nest) lies in the sealed,

elevated cells (5-11 cm in depth}, mostly at the corner sections, and in a few cases in the middle of the comb, extending for 20-28 cm. Unsealed flat cells, 2.5-5 cm in depth, containing unripe honey occur in the remaining part of the honey area length of

38-50 cm.

Here lies the real secret of our new concept. After climbing to the target place, the operation on the rock bee nest begins with a gentle clearance of the bees' curtain from the elevated area of honeycomb.

Further interest

Honey hunters and beekeepers of Tamil Nadu (Keystone Foundation) (€22) Code K305


Honey hunters of the Blue Mountains (Keystone Foundation). Video 28.90 (€43.40) Code VID20 or CD 22.80 €34.20 (Code VID20A. How to order? See page 15


Figure 3. Cutting the elevated honeycomb with a sharp knife: no water or smoke is necessary to evacuate the bees

Figure 5. A rock bee nest after removal of the elevated area of honeycomb .

Dissemination of knowledge The evacuated bees fly around and settle temporarily on the nearby leaves. The evacuated portion is then smoothly cut (Figure 3), detached, collected in a bucket and lowered. The whole process of bee evacuation and ‘honeycomb’ separation requires only two minutes. In the same manner, other accessible colonies are similarly ‘operated’ in the next

one or two hours and window-like holes are formed due to the removal

bottling, packaging and quality control are provided. To date, about 450 trained honey artisans are practising our method. They are collectively harvesting more than 55 tonnes of honey and wax and earning about

US$58,000 (US$127 per artisan) per annum, 3-4 times more than they would obtain by using conventional methods.

of the elevated area of honeycomb (Figures 4 and 5).


Efforts are being made to transfer this knowledge amongst the conventional groups of honey hunters in central India. The necessary training camps are arranged through local NGOs in each potential pocket. The low-cost facilities of proper storage of honey, processing,

Nest after harvesting

Figure 4

These nests do not fall, as both the ends of their attachment remain intact with the substratum and all the evacuated bees settle back on their nests by the next morning. ‘Operated’ portions are rebuilt and refilled with honey in the next 25-30 days which enables subsequent harvests. In the second harvest 6-7 kg of honey is obtained per nest which is more than the first harvest of 2-3 kg. In each blooming season, two or three harvests may be arranged. Rock bee colonies nesting on terrestrial surfaces are harvested by the same procedure. The teams return with the isolated 'honeycombs' packed in containers (Figure 6). Harvested honeycombs are chopped into pieces along the mid-rib and are kept on a big sieve, allowing the honey to trickle to a lower pot. The de-honeyed combs on the sieve are melted, filtered and

condensed in water to separate crude beeswax. The harvested honey and wax are marketed to local NGOs in order to protect the interests of the producers. .


By adopting our SNTRM technique, rock bee nests are not destroyed in their



° ultimately ae volones eres enric

perod new cevelopment daughter colonies, which

we to Salely add the forest eco-system.

helps to

Figure 6. Isolated elevated areas of honeycombs References

ATWAL, A S (2000) Essentials of beekeeping and pollination. Kalyani Publishers, Ludhiyana, India.

(1988) Technology for scientific harvesting of the biggest honey source of Science for Villages (Feb-Mar) pp 5-7. MAHINDRE, D B (1983) Handling rock bee colonies. Indian Bee Journal 45: 72 - 73. GHATGE, A



PAA andling 6 of


foc (7003)

Naaman Ste IN

ee inlernational hunters



WorKsnop on

Conservation and Management of Bees for Sustainable Development, Bangalore: pp


Acknowledgements We are grateful to Oxfam UK (India Trust), CAPART (New Delhi), MPCoST (MP), DRDA (Wardha, MS), KVIC-UNDP for financial support; Mr Mukund Uikey, a master trainer:

Professor Sanjeev Gandhewar for going through the manuscript and Mr Sanjay Mashankar (Anjali Arts) for the illustrations.

Bees/or Development Journal 77

LETTERS Tanzania: beekeeping past

ago retired from the Ministry of Defence where they kept explosives in concrete buildings for the same reason. Concrete appears to act as a |

was born in Tanzania (then named Tanganyika) and was a keen naturalist which was why went to work for Dr F G Smith at the Beekeeping Research Station, Tabora. worked there for a few years and left Africa in 1960 just before independence. Within a year or two |


heat sink, soaking up heat from its surroundings without itself gaining

much increase in temperature.


Dr Smith had also left and went to similar work in Australia.


lan Friend, UK


nearly all my work was done on safari: in fact spent three weeks every month visiting different places in western Tanzania wherever ihe local population kept bees. Annual production was 10,000 tonnes or more |

of honey, and on average 700 tonnes of beeswax. The honey nearly all went into beer making while the beeswax, which was of high quality, was shipped to London.

The Germans must take the credit for starting the beeswax industry in Tanzania, as they established this cash crop industry losing control of it after World War |. Each area had beekeeping instructors, most of them paid by their local authorities but some paid by the Forest Department. Tanzanian beeswax was of such high quality because it was produced in bark or log hives and never came into contact with

metal. The local beekeeping instructors taught the beekeepers to render it in such a way that it never contacted metal. Local traders were

Tanzania: beekeeping present acknowledge receipt of B/D Journal 75 with sponsorship provided by Bees for Development Trust. This magazine has broadened my knowledge in beekeeping. Outstanding in this issue was Cement hives an environmentally friendly alternative to wooden boxes. Thank you for |

being there for us.

Christopher Saboi, Eldoret

Training helps the way ahead have been living and working for two years with a mental health charity. set up a beekeeping project with the local community as a means of helping some villagers (especially youth) to help themselves. did some initial theory training and then have used a contact you gave |



also prevented from contaminating the beeswax with paraffin wax, or the wax of stingless bees - Trigona wax. Beeswax has many uses, but at that time nearly ail of the 700 tonnes were purchased by Brylcreem. The bulk of beekeeping occurred in forested areas which were the source of most of the good nectarproducing trees, such as Muwa (Julbernardia globiflora). The bark hives were always hung high in the crowns of trees which kept them a bit cooler and also gave protection from ants, grass fires and honey badgers. The latter were such a menace that the beekeepers hung their hives, wherever possible, in the Mkweranyani tree, Afzelia quanzensis. Mkweranyani means baboon puzzle: the tree has a wide girth and smooth bark, making climb.


me (Israel Oninyechi from Umuahia) for practical and further theory training. He has been fantastic and the project is going really well.

have also had support from the local Agricultural University who run forestry and apiculture courses where Professor Caroline Akwuchukwu is the Head of the Department. have had a really good response from friends here and bought 20 hives so far, plus protective clothing for the six trainees. Just to say thank you for all your help and that we are on |


the way!

Polly Eaton

impossible for baboons (or honey badgers) to

Progressive beekeeper seeks partnership am Fred Musisi in Kampala and am pleased to be writing to you through the contact of B/D Journal. Since | started beekeeping a few years ago, my apiary has been growing tremendously |

Frame hives (we used modified Dadant hives) could only be kept satisfactorily in concrete bee houses. These gave protection from ants, grass fires and honey badgers but also the design of the hives made it

possible to open them during the bee breeding season, without seriously upsetting the bees and the beekeepers getting so badly stung as to force a retreat.


with a good number of colonised hives, mostly frame and top-bar hives, plus local basket hives. My constraints are lack of funds for training

manuals, protective clothing, and the necessary materials for general expansion. am seeking business partnerships with people interested intend to export in sharing ideas anc know-how for mutual benefit. honey in the future: Uganda's honey is of the best quality in the whole |

kept bees in England in the 1960s, then in New Zealand and later in Australia. returned to England in 1980, but never kept bees again until 2004, when was so concerned about Varroa that joined the British Beekeepers’ Association who gave me a swarm very late on 31 July. This year have split it into two colonies. am not interested Later







just think that honeybees are such good pollinators that they should not be allowed to die out. Now that retired can spend more time on them. in producing honey,


world, free from antibiotics and pesticides, and enriched due to the natural environment. If

you are interested contact me

- look forward |

to early responses.




Contact Fred Musisi via Bees for Development


With regard to Natural antibiotic found in honey in BfD Journal 72, F G Smith did not detect any bee diseases in African bees until we started keeping them in the frame hives in the bee houses described above. Only then, when we were able to examine the brood during the breeding season, did Dr Smith find traces of European foulbrood in some hives, but the bees seemed to have resistance to it.

Smith's book Beekeeping in the Tropics there are diagrams of the as type of concrete bee house he used. These were very effective thermal conductor; concrete has a high specific heat and is a good thereby keeping the inside of the building relatively cool. Several years In Dr

ANTENNAE UP There are plenty of ways for you to contact Bees for Development. E-mail us or write to us with your ideas, information about meetings and events, news and views.

Contact details on page 2



Nelson Abila, Busho Serenity Foundation, Nigeria Busho Serenity Foundation is an NGO working in south western Nigeria. Its work covers development projects with marginalised

members of the communities. The area is a trans-forest zone, with an alarming rate of desertification. The thin forest

ecology is fast getting replaced by pure savannah. Persistent cultivation and poor management of land and forest resources are rampant, with an increase in the emergence of spear grass. The area continuously suffers from bush burning. Although this destroys vegetation and threatens the biodiversity, the

area still supports various trees and shrubs that are good sources of bee forage. The main occupation is farming with many farmers


in root and tuber crop

production of

yams and cassava. Traditional beekeeping does not exist, but there is seasonal honey hunting, particularly in the months before the onset of rainfall (December-March). Honey is widely consumed and it serves cultural roles in various ceremonies

including marriages and christenings. Honey marketing provides an opportunity for the few women who engage in trade across neighbouring villages and States, where honey is sourced during

fire. The major discouragement to beekeeping is the well-held fear of the bee sting.

Funding 2003, the Foundation sought support from Bees for Development. for organising a beekeeping workshop in the guinea savannah area of Ondo State. This request was granted In

and a Resource Box was received containing copies of BfD Journal, leaflets and

demonstration charts. Since the receipt of the Resource Box, effort was geared towards

sourcing financial support to conduct the Workshop, as the Foundation is young and lacks a financial base for executing its projects. Eventually, help came in February

2005 with a philanthropist providing financial assistance. This was used to procure beekeeping kits and materials including smokers, bee suits, veils, gloves; to provide the materials to construct a model top-bar hive for demonstration; and in the creation of

Ajowa, including retired school teachers, inservice teachers, farmers, and students from both higher institutions of learning and those in secondary education. Participants were taken through the socioeconomic importance of beekeeping, the products of beekeeping as well as hints on how to start, siting an apiary, and basic hive management. The training covered aspects of beekeeping such as honey production,

processing, packaging and marketing and processing of wax. The first session was

followed by a demonstration - see picture below left - and discussions around the demonstration charts (picture next page). The second session gave a comprehensive illustration on the importance of plantation agriculture for fruit trees as a complimentary enterprise to beekeeping for enhancing income and other benefits.

Do your bees

a pilot training apiary. The fund also provided all the Workshop participants with a seminar

make propolis?

pack and light refreshment.

Workshop Our Workshop in March aimed to sensitise

and train participants in the basic techniques of beekeeping and plantation agriculture.

There were 21 participants: four women and 17 men from lyari, Ibaram, Gedegede, and


scarcity. Wax processing is non-existent; combs are thrown away after pressing out honey. This method of honey collection

means destruction of the bee colonies with

for farmers We would like to test it and possibly buy it


from you.

James Fearnley of BeeVital is

a leading world

authority on the nature of propolis & its

medicinal properties, he is author of Bee Propolis-Natural Healing from the Hive retailing at 7.99

plus p&p.

A major research project has been started by BeeVital and we would like your help. you are interested in finding out whether your propolis is suitable for medicinal use and learning about sustainable ways of harvesting


& using propolis please send a sample (50g) to:

BeeVital, Brereton Lodge, Goathland, Whitby, North Yorkshire YO22 5JR, UK Tel:


Participants at the Workshop: the author the workshop facilitator is standing second right


++44 + +44

(0) 1947 896037 (0) 1947 896482


Bees/or Development Journal 77



RESOURCES FOR COURSES Bees for Development helps projects and groups in developing countries by providing publications for use at training courses and workshops. Our Resource Boxes contain a selection of B/D Journals; Bees and rural livelihoods (English, Portuguese and Spanish editions available); Information charts; and a selection of other appropriate publications,

subject to funding availability. To ensure Resource Boxes arrive in time your request must reach us at least 12 weeks ahead of the meeting date, with an indication

of the number of participants. he




Organisations with some financial resources can buy Resource Boxes. The standard charge is 50 for 25 participants inclusive of surface mail delivery. Purchasing information can be found at

Participants read through the beekeeping charts used at the Workshop

TRE ES BE ES USE Apicultural value Datura stramonium \s a good source of nectar for bees


Jimson Weed - Datura stramonium

seeds are reportedly used as an admixture for palm wine and local brews to enhance their intoxicating effects. The plant is reported to have medical uses: for treating aches,

abscesses, arthritis, asthma, and

Kwaroko (Hausa-Nigeria), Segede (YorubaNigeria), Osho (Iluen-Nigeria) Jimson Weed, Mad-apple, Thorn apple, Devil's apple,

is a good

gastrointestinal problems. Stimulant and has antibiotic, narcotic and It

anodyne properties.


Family Solanaceae

Description Jimson Weed is an annual shrub and is widespread in southern Nigeria. It is well known in most parts of America and Asia and is widely distributed throughout the warmer portion of the whole world.

Flowers Jimson Weed flowers throughout the year, more in the rainy season May to November. The bees visit the plant in the early hours of the morning.

Uses Nigeria the plant is not a farm crop but it is planted as a biological control for termites In

around buildings and for repelling snakes. It is equally potent for treating snake bites. The leaves from Jimson Weed are pounded and

soaked in water as a biological pesticide for controlling insects, particularly termites. The

Jimson weed is widely distributed in Ondo State. Nigeria

Thanks to Nelson Abila of Busho Serenity Foundation, Nigeria for supplying the text and photograph.

What plants do your bees use? Send details to Bees for Development. Our address is on page 2.

PETRIFIED HONEY? Travelling in Yunnan, China (near Gonshan) this summer came across a man selling what appeared to be honey, crystallised into a hard, solid mass. It was sweet to the taste and orange in colour. Not able to speak |

Mandarin, Cantonese or Tibetan, questions about its origins.


was unable to ask the gentleman

My questions are: —

Can honey mineralize or petrify?

Are there any accounts of similar phenomena?

What else might this material be?

Thank you for any assistance in solving this mystery

Albie Miles, Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems, University of California Santa Cruz, USA ce


Is this honey? Note: the moss growing on the mass (top of picture); and the remnants of a Vespid nest in the centre of the mass below

THIRD CARIBBEAN BEEKEEPING CONGRESS edited by Lyndon E McLaren 2005 199 pages A4 soft cover price 10


Code M105

The Third Caribbean Beekeeping Congress took place in Kingston, Jamaica in September 2002. The Proceedings from the Congress are now available. Included are reports of beekeeping in Caribbean Nations, and papers presented during technical sessions on development, legislation and honeybee pathology issues. Congress Resolutions and a list of participants also provide a useful record of the meeting.

SUBSCRIPTION OFFER Buy the Proceedings of the First, Second and Third Caribbean Beekeeping Congresses for the special '3 in 1' price of 25 (usual price 47.70)

Proceedings of th ieee


Ee pon




Bees/or Development Journal 77





PANAMA Panama is strategically situated on the narrow isthmus connecting Central and South America. The Crossroads of the Americas is 675 km long and only 50-120 km wide. There is a central mountain chain with an

inactive volcano peak of 3475 m. On the Pacific side the climate is seasonal with rains from October to January. There is more rain on the Atlantic side with drier conditions from February to April and August to



. pe

a“ .




excellent bee forage. There is some forage on sugar cane stalks after cutting and Citrus is a rich source at plantations. Roubik (1984) conducted a major analysis of nectar and pollen sources of Panama. There are some cucurbit pollination rental opportunities (mainly melons) in western Chiriqui Province.


Population 3,000,000 inhabitants that include three indigenous American cultures



the Eastern Kuna and central Choco portions of the Darien, the eastern

third of the country bordering Colombia, and in the central mountain chain Guamae. Half the population lives within 12 km of the Panama

Canal that bisects the country and primarily in the capital Panama City.


Beekeeping Virtually all Panama's beekeeping is along the Pacific side of the central mountain chain with the Azuerlo Peninsula and western Chiriqui Province (bordering Costa Rica) the best territory. Prior to the arrival of Africanised honeybees, 12 large-scale beekeepers held the majority of the colonies, with one individual collecting honey for export to Germany. By 1990 there was too little honey to meet internal markets.

78,020 km?, with 2,490 km of coastline.

There are now three commercial beekeepers. One of these keeps European bees on Perlas Islands in the Bay of Panama by regular


requeening with European queens imported from Hawaii. A few hobbyist beekeepers remain, but the GTZ-training facility and other trainingefforts at technical schools have been terminated.

Although agriculture is the occupation of 21% of the population it gains only 7% of the GDP Exports include banana, coffee, corn, palm oil, rice and sugar cane. The EU and USA are major trading partners. In-country crops include beans, Citrus, onions and vegetables.

Honeybees European honeybees Apis mellifera were introduced into Panama in the early 1800s. The GTZ development programme in 1971 estimated 3,200 beekeeper-maintained colonies and built a training and wax and honey

processing facility in Davisa. By 1982 when colony numbers had increased to 21,000, managed by 369 beekeepers, Africanised bees arrived. In 1989 colony numbers had fallen to below 4,000 before numbers slowly increased to reach 7,000 by year 2000.

Melliferous vegetation areas of human disturbance, corn and palm represent major pollen sources and living fences of several tree or shrub species provide In

A number of unsuccessful efforts have tried to improve the Africanised honeybee temperament and/or to introduce European queen honeybees. Ministry of Agriculture extension and research programmes have attempted bee breeding using selected stock in Panama with imported queens. At least one commercial beekeeper has attempted to keep European bees and raise queens in the higher elevations of Chiriqui Province to avoid defensive Africanised bees. All have proved

unsuccessful. Recently Varroa mites were detected in Panama with the highest levels in Chiriqui Province. It is likely that it is the importation of European queen bees that is responsible for this infestation.

Beekeeping Development The Delaware/Panama Partners of the Americas under a Farmer-to-Farmer Programme with USAID funding started an Africanised honeybee recovery/retraining scheme in the centre of the country (along the Panama Canal region) and western Chiriqui Province in the 1980s. The Scheme was recognised with an award of excellence by the Kellogg Foundation in 1995 after helping increase colony numbers and



beekeepers by 15%. Tom MacCormick, a sideline beekeeper in western Pennsylvania, has continued an individual training effort to improve beekeeping and has organised several beekeeping tours of Panama. The

Chiriqui beekeepers and those in Bocas del Toro, the most western Atlantic Province, have recently organised co-operative marketing. Reference

Ty f

ROUBIK, D W; SCHMALZEL, R J; MORENO, E (1984) Estudio Apibotanico de Panama. ORISA Tech Bull 24. 73 pp. Further reading

CARON, D M (2002) Africanised Honeybees in the Americas. Bees for Development Journal 62: 6-7. CARON, D M (2001) Africanized Honey Bees in the Americas. 10 (Code C010). See page 15 for how to order. Working with bees at Panama's research agency where there was a failed attempt to breed a gentler Africanised bee



Thanks to Dewey Caron from the Department of Entomology & Wildlife Ecology, University of Delaware, USA for providing the information and photograph.


SWEET PROFITS FROM GUATEMALA Roger Hamilton The walk to the hives led through what appeared to be abandoned land, a tangle of brush and small trees, many with sharp spines. But for Mauro Hernandez Flores, if his bees like it this way, so does he: this apparent wasteland provides the bees in his 35 hives with year-round



like beekeeping better than farming", he said. "My hives

earn me the equivalent of US$660 a year, the same that would make if cleared six or seven hectares". While the bees are producing honey, |


the permanent vegetation protects the soil. It is far from being a natural forest, but it is much more environmentally friendly than a field of beans.

Mauro Hernandez Flores would like to have 160 hives, as his father did. Then he could devote himself exclusively to beekeeping, and would not have to clear and burn any land. "There would be food for my bees, so that my bees could give food to me". When he was 11 years old, his father and two older brothers were killed in the civil conflict in

Guatemala, and he and his mother had to struggle to make ends meet. Now 20 years on, he carries on part of his father's legacy.

Joining forces Mauro Hernandez Flores belongs to the Palestina branch of the Northern Guatemalan Beekeepers' Association, founded four years ago. The Association has 108 members and 11 branches, with each branch

selling supplies and equipment to its members, and taking in their honey for sale. The Association is assisted by the NGO Mesoamerican Cooperation for Development and Peace, which in turn carries out several projects for the Petén Sustainable Development Programme, financed by the IDB. Petén is perfect for honey production. The local farmers use no pesticides, so all the honey can be marketed as organic. Also, the large extensions of natural areas produce flowers all year round. Importantly, no sugar cane is grown in the area, so there is no danger that the bees will suck their juice, which makes the honey taste like ordinary cane

sugar. With support from the IDB programme, Mauro Hernandez Flores has made apiculture study trips to Chile, Honduras and Mexico, helping him perfect his skills and teaching him how to make better hives and to reduce the threat of diseases. He is grateful that he now receives six

times more for his honey than he did just a few years ago. Each year he invests the equivalent of US$260 in frames, boxes, fencing, and other materials. and receives the equivalent of US$530 for his bees' honey. He grows corn and beans as well, but honey gives him a better return

Mauro Hernandez Flores and the tecomasuche bush Cochlospermum vitifolium. A particular favourite with the bees and the honey has an especially delicate fragrance.

for his investments in terms of time and money invested.

Mauro Hernandez Flores' protective gloves are worn and full of holes nevertheless he reached into the hives and took out a frame. He brushed off the bees and showed how to distinguish the combs that

contained honey from those with pollen and bee larvae, whilst the bees formed an angry cloud around the human trespassers. Using a knife he cut off thick, dripping hunks of honeycomb, some of which contained larvae and pollen. These would be eaten later in a ritual of praise for the bees that includes spitting the chewed wax on the ground. At the Association's Palestina office, Mauro Hernandez Flores gave his guests soda bottles filled with honey. He is happy to be earning a living that helps, not harms, the environment. Honey production provides income and a reason to preserve natural areas. Bees from hives belonging to co-operative members living near the protected forest areas find flowers easily. The forest guards are doing a better job

keeping out poachers and illegal timber cutters than in years past. But they cannot keep out the bees!

Source: IDBAmérica Magazine

INTER-AMERICAN DEVELOPMENT BANK The IDB was established in 1959 as a development institution with novel mandates and tools that have proved so effective that it

became the model on which all other regional and sub-regional multilateral development banks were created. The IDB is the main source of multilateral financing for economic, social and institutional development projects, as well as trade and regional integration programmes in Latin America and the Caribbean.

A steady stream of smoke keeps the bees at bay

IDBAmérica Scholarship Competition for university students, 18-30 years old, in Latin America and the Caribbean. Submit an original article describing a successful initiative to tackle a problem in health, education, crime, environment, corruption, employment, governance or other social area in her/his country by 15 December 2005. See


Bees/or Development Journal 77




Pollen substitutes and supplements

SUCCESS WITH IFS International Foundation for Science (IFS) announces 117 grants approved in the first half of 2005. 65% were allocated to

We received the following message from refer to your article on Better M D Musa: in top-bar hives. things that can beekeeping

brewers’ yeast. The person most closely associated with this work is Haydak, who in

researchers based in low income countries

1967 recommended the following pollen

with vulnerable scientific infrastructures.

go wrong (BfD Journal 72). The discussion is very useful. Would you please ask Pam Gregory to describe the mixing ratio of the


Out of 600 applications received, nearly

artificial pollen patty, as the information is not



The mixture can be fed dry, as long as it can be kept clean and dry.


Pam responds A pollen substitute is defined as any material that can be used to replace natural pollen as the source of protein for brood rearing. Pollen

supplements contain 10-25% of natural pollen in the mixture in order to maximise available protein. They have slightly different functions and the terms should not be used interchangeably. Some authorities suggest that the term ‘pollen extenders’ rather than ‘pollen supplements’ would be less confusing.

The most commonly used protein sources are soyabean meal, skimmed milk powder and

swienty -

3 parts soyabean flour 1 part dried brewers' yeast 1 part dried skimmed milk.

Everything for the

Beekee per IT

It may also be provided outside the hive. This formulation might be most suitable for people using top-bar hives, who are not able to place

a moist pollen patty close enough to the

brood area. For a moist patty the dry ingredients are incorporated into a sugar

syrup to make a paste. The sugar syrup and dry ingredients must be mixed together

thoroughly and left to stand overnight before use. This ensures that the liquid is fully absorbed into the powders to form a stiff dough. The consistency should be such that it will stay on top of the frames without running

pollen is used in the mixture it must be first made moist enough for the pellets to break down, by adding a little water and mixing it If

thoroughly. A typical recipe is: :


part brewers’ yeast

Further reading

BfD Information Centre at DIETZ, A (1986) Nutrition of the adult honeybee. In: 7he Hive and the Honeybee chapter 5: pp 120-147. Dadant & Sons, Hamilton, IL, USA. R A (ed) (1989) The ABC and XYZ of Bee Culture 40th ed. Al Root Co, Medina,







Fax: +45 7448 800: Tel: +45 7448 6969

BEE CRAFT A full colour monthly magazine for beginners and experts alike covering all aspects of beekeeping in the UK and Ireland. FREE SAMPLE COPY on request, for 12 issues. Credit cards accepted.



NEW in NAME Though our name has changed our values and our vision of a world free of poverty and injustice in which technology is used for the benefit of all remain the same. For



foulbrood (EFB) and so should only be used if it has been collected from a known source.

advise on best beekeeping practices and offer training. Also, we are sourcing funding for the initial structures and

more information visit :

is important fo note that natural pollen can carry the causal agents of chalk brood, American foulbrood (AFB) and European

an RE

POSITIVE POSITIVE We are looking for someone with good knowledge and experience who will be stationed here in Edu State, Nigeria, to

Practical Action is the new name of ITDG.





equipment. Contact Adamu Omokhogie

syrup solution made of 2 parts sugar to 1 part hot water (measured by volume). Each 500 g of dry ingredients are mixed with two litres of

3 parts soyaflour 2 parts pollen.

one in five proposals were approved for grants. Next deadline 30 December 2005

MORSE, R; HOOPER, T (1985) Pollen supplements and substitutes. In: The /Hustrated Encyclopaedia of Beekeeping: pp 299-300. Blandford Press, Poole, UK.


VI international Apiculture Photography Contest announced by the Environment and Culture Council of The Excellency of Azuqueca de Henares City Government,

Spain. Open to citizens and organisations around the world. Apiculture in any of its

aspects: biology, flora, products, hives, bee yards, customs and uses, commerce, promotion, art. Photographs must be originals and unpublished. Closing date 30 April 2006. See

COPYRIGHT As part of our Information Service you are welcome to translate and/or reproduce items appearing in BfDJ. Permission is given on the understanding that the Journal and author(s) are acknowledged, our contact details are provided in full, and you send us a copy of the item or the website address where it is used.






LOOK AHEAD ARGENTINA XIV Feria y Jornadas de Apicultura XIV Beekeeping Fair and Meetings 5-7 May 2006, ‘Centro de la Republica’ Further details

AUSTRALIA 8th Asian Apicultural Association Conference 20-24 March 2006, Perth

Further details on page 16


CZECH REPUBLIC EurBee Second European Conference

Devon Beekeepers' Association Summer Conference

of Apidology

21-23 July 2006, Exeter University Further details

10-14 September 2006, Prague Further details

EL SALVADOR IV Seminario y Taller Mesoamericano sobre abejas sin aguijon IV Central American Seminar and Workshop on Stingless Bees

5-8 December 2005, Chalatenango Further details



40th International Apicultural Congress 9-13 September 2007, Melbourne

Intermiod: 7th Exhibition and Conference on

Further details

27-30 April 2006, Moscow


USA 9th International Pollination Symposium 23-28 July 2006, lowa State University Further details

XV International Congress of the IUSSI 30 July - 4 August 2006, Washington Further details[USSI2006.htm|

LEARN AHEAD Bees for Development arranges beekeeping Study tours and visits world-wide. Contact us for details.


Further details

XVI Congresso Brasileiro de Apicultura XVI Brazilian Beekeeping Congress May 2006, CBA, Sergipe Further details

XXV Euroferia Apfcola - 25th year XXV Beekeeping Fair 9-12 March 2006, Guadalajara


Further details

lV International Specialised Exhibition -


Making beekeeping equipment

Bees for Development Trust Day 4 March 2006, Monmouth Further details

16-22 April and 22-28 October


10-12 February 2006, Pleven Further details

APIMONDIA Symposium: Selection and queen breeding

16-18 September 2006, Sofia Further details


British Beekeepers' Association Annual Convention

22 April 2006, Kenilworth Further details


KENYA 2006 Baraka College Short Courses 19-25 March and 6-12 August Setting up a beekeeping enterprise

13-19 August

Processing bee products Further details. you want notice of your conference, workshop or meeting to be included here send details to If

Bees for Development, Troy, Monmouth, NP25 4AB,

UK. Email


2005 editions available

For the beekeeper and bee scientist the Apimondia Journal. 2003 and to download from

Publication of Uludag Beekeeping Association. Quarterly, in Turkish with English titles and summaries of articles. News, practical information and research articles - a link between Turkish beekeeping and the world. Contact



FAO, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, supports beekeeping projects in developing countries. Beekeepers’ groups and associations may apply for small project funding (less

BfD Journal offers a great opportunity to contact thousands of readers in over 100 countries. Quarter page advertisements 65; full page


than US$10,000) from the TeleFood Special Fund. Request documents should include a brief description of the project's

Charges subject to VAT in EC countries


Notice Board items 0.50 per word. Other sizes available contact us - details page 2. Enclosures also accepted.

objectives, the proposed food production or income-generating activities, the work plan, the number of participants, a detailed list of inputs with cost estimates and the reporting arrangements. Submit your request to the office of FAO or UNDP in your country.

AGROFORESTER'S LIBRARY Agroforesters' Library is a periodic feature of The Overstory. Beginning in 1998 agroforestry specialists around the world were asked to recommend their favourite resources. Species references,

Applications for projects with budgets over US$10,000 must be

book sources, organisations, periodicals, and web sites are covered. Available for viewing at.|

submitted through a Government Ministry. See

Remember to tell B/D the outcome of your application

GLOBAL CENTRE A proposal to merge the UN University Institute for New Technologies (UNU-INTECH) with the Maastricht Economic Research Institute on

BEE BOOKS NEW AND OLD The Weaven, Little Dewchurch, Hereford HR2 6PP UK, for your new and second-hand books. Telephone +44 (0)1432 840529 or

Innovation and Technology (MERIT) would create a major global research centre focusing on innovation and development. The eventual merger, which is subject to approval, would bring together over 100 researchers from developed and developing countries



Forest Leadership is circulating a survey to gain input from the public to complete the programme for the March 2006 Conference. The main theme is The Sustainability Challenge, an excellent opportunity to

generating knowledge on pressing contemporary problems. The combined facility would be the largest of its kind in the application of new technologies to help the developing world. More at

explore and discuss critical sustainability challenges and opportunities. See


Bees/or Development Journal 77


NEWS AROUND THE WORLD 2006 to provide free medical care but its community development department will also in

BANGLADESH Angela Gomes runs one of the largest women's rural organisations in Bangladesh. Operating out of a 1.5-hectare training complex in Jessore, Banchte Shekha (Bengali for Learn to Survive}, founded in 1976, offers female-empowerment programmes to more

be focusing on establishing long-term

sustainable businesses. Sharon Biddell, project manager at the Africa Mercy said: "Women in Africa continue to face enormous

obstacles and they lack the training and means to prosper. This women-only programme is dedicated to promoting gender equality. Bee products can provide valuable food and medicine and beeswax is an

than 25,000 women in 430 villages. Amongst the vast range of income-generating

skills taught is beekeeping. Known as the ‘Mother Teresa of Bangladesh’, Angela Gomes won the 1999 Ramon Magsaysay Award for

important cash crop. There is great demand for honey and other bee products from two well established production companies in

Community Leadership. In naming her as one of that year's awardees, the Board of Trustees cited her role in "helping Bangladeshi women assert their rights to better livelihoods and

Ghana and at present orders exceed

production capacities’.

The beekeeping training programme will target eight selected groups of ten students in

gender equality, under the law and in everyday life."

rural locations. Each group will be equipped to operate an apiary site of ten hives.


GHANA A new community project aimed at reducing poverty in communities in Africa is being set up by volunteers of the global charity, Mercy Ships. The 'Busy Bees’ project has the capacity to train 80 women in beekeeping and honey farming to help raise additional income

allow the resumption of honey exports to the EU, which were stopped in July 2004", states Andrei Zagareanu, Chairman of the Association of Beekeepers. The laboratory

€500,000 has been provided with funding from the EU Food Security Programme that started in Moldova in


April 2005,

Source: FAO NWFP-Digest-L 12/05

NEPAL Training of Trainers

Interactive demonstrations will be carried out by local skilled trainers in four stages over a four month period, guiding students through

on colony management, queen rearing, and hive making in Kathmandu in March 2005.

programmes supported by Mercy Ships helping to rid Africa of poverty.

Media House Press Release on behalf of

communities through a low cost, low input business.

Honey certification Moldova will acquire its first honey certification laboratory in the first halt of 2006. "The laboratory is regarded as a lifeline for beekeepers, as certification will

ICIMOD's Honeybees in the Himalayas project organised a Training of Trainers programme

one production cycle of beekeeping. This is just one of the many community development

in farming


Mercy Ships, July 2005

Participants included farmers from the villages surrounding ICIMOD's Test andDemonstration Site in Godavari, and farmers nominated by partner organisations. The course was targeted at building the capacity of lead beekeepers so that they can train other farmers in managing and

multiplying colonies in movable comb hives.

The Africa Mercy, one of Mercy Ships’ hospital ships, will be heading to Ghana early

Faroog Ahmad, ICIMOD, Kathmandu


o x



a fad

x =

am sending information on some of the honey crops harvested by professional



beekeeper Mr Naveed Qureshi, of Mr Bee Honey Farms, an apiary of over 500 hives. 2005 Mr Bee Honey Farms planned some



non-traditional honey flora in addition to their usual crops. The results from the litchi orchards in Lahore were excellent. Mr Bee Honey Farms Honey Crops 2005 Variety


Quantity (tonnes)

Brassica (Sarsoon)



Citrus (orange blossom)






Acacia (Phulai)



12 AE

12 18

Clover (Barseem)



Granda (Carissa)










1992 Mr Naveed Quershi was one of my

students on the practical beekeeping course funded by the Pak-German Beekeeping


In the background you can see the beekeeper's tent and Ziziphus sp plantations where hives were placed in October 2004.

Promotion Project. The photograph shows us

at Lilla Junction on the motorway beekeepers often move empty hives on

Elizabeth Stephen, Senior Scientitic Officer, Institute of Plant & Environment Protection,

donkey carts if other vehicles are not

National Agriculture Research Centre, Islamabad


Bees/ov Development Journal 77





Beekeeping and conserving

biodiversity of honeybees

BEEKEEPING AND CONSERVING BIODIVERSITY OF HONEYBEES edited by Marco Lodesani and Cecilia Costa 2005 180 pages AS soft cover


rms untreegt

(€16.50) Code L305

This new title reports the work of six bee laboratories in Europe who have participated in the Beekeeping and Apis Biodiversity in Europe or BABE project. In the first part Beekeeping for maintaining biodiversity Dt Robin Moritz introduces the most important beneficial insect the vital of not the is a domesticated but is wild, kept animal, honeybee. A part any ecosystem, honeybee in humans artificial nest sites which allow access to the resources. by (hives) honeybees' Chapters in the first part of the book are: EU research network on the impact of beekeeping on honeybee diversity; Biogeography of European honeybees: Selection theory and effective population size; Requirements for

local population conservation and breeding; and Practical aspects of bee breeding for biodiversity aims. Part 2 reports on special projects including a case study of the honeybee conservation on Laesg Island in Denmark. |

MELISSOPALYNOLOGY VENEZU ELA Patricia Vit 2005 205 pages soft cover 11.90

(€17.90) Code V010

Patricia Vit explains that her motivation to write this book was the outcome of an investigation into the medicinal properties of stingless bee honey. Data on honey analysis in Venezuela was scarce. Yet

pollen analysis (melissopalynology) of honey is necessary to apply precise standards for its quality control. As well as floral resources, there is a description of how the pollen reference collection was prepared. Palynological measurements are described, and terms included in the glossary. This useful book provides descriptions and microphotographs of pollen grains from 140 species in 58 plant families. The author hopes that the book will encourage support for beekeeping.

THE MONK AND THE HONEYBEE David Taylor, York Films 2005 90 minutes 20 Code VID35


This film on DVD is an engaging blend of science, natural history, adventure and biography telling the remarkable story of Brother Adam, who spent a lifetime trying to breed the perfect honeybee. From the Benedictine Abbey in Buckfast, UK, Brother Adam directed an incredible enterprise. He searched Europe, the Middle East and Africa for genetic material from which he planned to ‘synthesise’ the Buckfast strain. This culminated in an extraordinary expedition, undertaken in his 90th year, to hunt the elusive black bee of Kilimanjaro. Filmed in the Buckfast apiaries, the German Alps and the mountains of Tanzania, this is a fascinating insight into the workings of the honeybee colony and the genius of a great bee

master. Brother Adam died on


September 1996, aged 98.

The Monk and the Honeybee is a tribute to his

extraordinary life.




Horst Wendorf 2005 45 minutes 29.40

(€44.10) Code VID36 English and Lao language

Regular readers will recall our reviews of the films Horst Wendorf has prepared on beekeeping in Zambia and in the Philippines. This new DVD describes the five year beekeeping project by the Provincial Agriculture & Forestry Office in Qudomxay Province in Laos partnered by German AgroAction with the assistance of DED. The aims were the sustainable use of natural resources and an increase in productivity which would lead to greater income and improved living standards for the local population. The film is honest about the outcomes of the project and the ways to move forward. Top-bar hives were introduced to local beekeepers who had been using log hives. These were not a success: beekeepers found it difficult to manage the bees in the new hives and wasps and other predators became a problem. More training will be provided and the good news is there is no evidence of a decline in the number of bees in the area. Not only educational, this is an entertaining film for all bee enthusiasts.


Bees/or Development Journal 77



atlpf cigit Lt tt FLFR



(€30.75) Code VID37

While forests and woodlands are now recognised as esse ntial for human life, their benefits and services are valued differently by different people. This CD is ac of six ympilation biannual reports from FAQ “3 since 1995. The reports focus on the status of the world's forests, recent major policy and institutiona “developments and key issues concerning the forest sector. This is current, reliable and policy-relevant information to facilitate informed discussion and decision making with regard to the world's forests. Each report is almost 200 pages long, in PDF format and in five languages - Arabic, Chinese, English, .» French and Spanish. %

4c gona


Collection Coleccion

1995-2005 ion


to accompany

An ilfustrated Key Rex Sawyer’s book.



John Chandler and Dave Rennison

Harrogate and Ripon BKA,

(€22.50) Code VID38

John Chandler and Dave Rennison credit pollen expert Rex Sawyer as the inspiration for this new work presented on CD. In his book Pollen identification published in 1981, Sawyer referred to the likely future use of computer technology for production of an illustrated key, to replace the set of punched cards that accompanied his book at that time. The micro slides were photographed using a 'x 40 lens' the level of most use that the who are members of the authors, beekeeping microscopists explain magnification


Harrogate & Ripon Beekeepers’ Association, UK. There is a step by step user guide, and ‘Sawyer's spreadsheet’, a pollen identification key plus the common and scientific names of 151 plant species.



Some Honeybee Plants of Bas-Congo Province, Democratic Republic of Congo




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