Florida beekeeping report
Fascinating 10 minute interview about beekeeping and agriculture in Florida where there are 250 commercial beekeepers. Onion and carrot honey may taste dreadful, but the pollination is vital for agriculture. And the turf wars in California where bees are banned from certain areas lest they pollinate the oranges which then have seeds!
East? West? Which is best?
Intriguing research showing that honeybees on the west of Scotland have better survival rates than those on the east. 5% loss v 21% loss. There could be lots of variables at play, but the researchers are suggesting that it could be related to the more intensive agriculture in the east
The atmosphere is electric …
Bumblebees and flowers communicate via electrical signals. No-one knows quite how, but a few of the whys seem clear.
Evidence in the neonicotinoids debate
As the EU debate on the neonicotinoid ban looms next week, here’s a thought-provoking piece from a scientist in Nature on the debate. Here’s one telling paragraph:
As a scientist involved in this debate, I find this misinformation deeply frustrating. Yet I also see that lies and exaggeration on both sides are a necessary part of the democratic process to trigger rapid policy change. It is simply impossible to interest millions of members of the public, or the farming press, with carefully reasoned explanations. And politicians respond to public opinion much more readily than they respond to science.
A spring boost for your bees
Here’s a product that has been getting lots of good reports from beekeepers who want to build up colonies in the spring: Vita Feed Gold. We will soon be publishing some research stats to show how effective it has been in field tests.
Vita Feed Gold is a natural extract based on natural beet extract and molasses and is very easy to administer as a liquid feed:
Spring stutters in the UK
After some warmish weather a few days ago when honeybees could get out for the first time in weeks, the temperature has dropped again to 3C and won’t be rising again for several days. I wonder if bees get impatient.
Spring is coming (in the northern hemisphere)
Here’s a heart-warming picture for beekeepers emerging from winter. Don’t forget to stock up on swarm lures.
Vita gets a new home and a new home page
Vita (Europe) Ltd, the world’s largest dedicated honeybee health company, has moved to new offices and launched a new-look website at www.vita-europe.com as the hub of its growing online presence.
The new offices, named Vita House, are in the heart of Basingstoke in Hampshire, an English county renowned for its beekeeping heritage. The new premises give the company a lot more space, more light and an altogether better working environment. Read more…
Honeybee health research boosted by new treatment test Researchers discover the fastest and most reliable way to test varroa treatments
The fastest and most definitive way of testing the effectiveness of treatments to control the varroa mite, the scourge of honeybees, has been developed by Vita (Europe) Ltd with a team of researchers at the Aristotle University in Greece.
This new ground-breaking bioassay is reducing testing time from potentially days to hours, and it is so sensitive that it can be used to identify mites resistant to specific treatments. Relatively small adaptations should also enable it to be used with a wide range of insect pests. Read more…
Newsletter: New varroa test
Includes; New swarm lure, New bioassay developed to test Varroa products, Vita appoints Commercial Development Manager, The best bee fence and Learning from bees
Download the newsletter here: [download format=”Newsletter” id=”12668″]