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message 1: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy | 1574 comments Mod
65% of New Hampshire beehives did NOT survive this past winter. There were 1,004 in October and in April only 350.

Some possible reasons:

1. Most beekeepers don't know why.
2. Varroa mites.
3. Weakness.
4. Nosema, a widespread fungal disease.
5. Inexperienced beekeepers lost more hives than experienced ones.

message 2: by Robert (new)

Robert Zwilling | 1978 comments I would suspect you could also throw in whatever substances were administered to the plants that were good for the plants [possibly] but not good for the bees.

With the current state of affairs it must be very hard for the new beekeepers. For something that use to run on autopilot, you can now lose a hive with no warning.

message 3: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy | 1574 comments Mod
Yes, I would add pesticides, but the article did not mention them. The list came from a poll taken by the beekeepers themselves.

message 4: by Robert (last edited Jun 14, 2017 12:04AM) (new)

Robert Zwilling | 1978 comments A new take on honeybees as pollinators - we don't need them.
In the last 500 years honeybees were exported all over the world. They weren't the natural pollinators for most areas in the first place. Sarah Bergmann goes on to say that bats, butterflies, moths, flies, midges and more are the original pollinators.

The only problem I see here is that the bats, butterflies, and months are also on the way out. Anything you can easily see seems to be slipping away. Anything flying fly size or smaller seems to be surviving. I wonder if there any plants they don't care to pollinate.

She says we need to devote a higher percentage of land to be used as undeveloped corridors. Unfortunately too many people believe that unused land is being wasted, that it is worthless until it is developed into something suitable for turning an immediate cash profit. Kind of like seeing a full glass as being empty.

message 5: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy | 1574 comments Mod
I know a developer who believes undeveloped land is a blight. How do you fight that? For him, it's all about the cash.

message 6: by Robert (last edited Jun 14, 2017 12:11PM) (new)

Robert Zwilling | 1978 comments Land development is a complete cradle to grave belief system right up there with organized religion that is supported by the government because developed land always has a bigger tax value. It crosses all nationalities, philosophies, ages, in short it is a universal belief system.

People First is based on the idea that there are no immediate consequences of actions for anything done to the natural world. People will do all they can to prevent land from going back to it's original state. Even though the publicity is getting bigger for preserving the land, the amount of land set aside for not being developed is becoming an increasingly smaller percentage of the land being developed and redeveloped.

Here is an interesting collection of articles that does a good job of illustrating the compromises involved in trying to do anything.

message 7: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy | 1574 comments Mod
Actor Morgan Freeman has converted his ranch into a honeybee sanctuary:

message 8: by Robert (new)

Robert Zwilling | 1978 comments One thing that you seldom hear about is that the pollinator bees have been inbred for a long time. In a good environment it might not matter. In a negative environment it probably makes matters worse.

message 9: by Jimmy (last edited Mar 27, 2019 12:50PM) (new)

Jimmy | 1574 comments Mod
Here is an article about honeybees and inbreeding:

message 10: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
If you have not heard of the FlowHive, as I had not, you might want to look at this author blog post. Only if you like honey, though.

message 11: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
Bees can make a wave and surf on it if they fall into water.

message 12: by Robert (new)

Robert Zwilling | 1978 comments Good reasons not to buy bee pollen.
The bees use it as food that they need to eat and collecting it can shorten the bees lives.

message 13: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
An African wild bee is able to have workers turn into the mothers of queens, without a drone involved.

"The existence of Cape bees with these characters has been known for over a hundred years, but it is only recently, using modern genomic tools, that we have been able to understand the actual gene that gives rise to virgin birth....

The ability to produce daughters asexually, known as "thelytokous parthenogenesis", is restricted to a single subspecies inhabiting the Cape region of South Africa, the Cape honey bee or Apis mellifera capensis.

Several other traits distinguish the Cape honey bee from other honey bee subspecies. In particular, the ovaries of worker bees are larger and more readily activated and they are able to produce queen pheromones, allowing them to assert reproductive dominance in a colony.

These traits also lead to a propensity for social parasitism, a behaviour where Cape bee workers invade foreign colonies, reproduce and persuade the host colony workers to feed their larvae. Every year in South Africa, 10,000 colonies of commercial beehives die because of the social parasite behaviour in Cape honey bees."

message 14: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
Here is a really nice article explaining the life cycles of bumblebees, social bees, solitary bees and honeybees.

For those who aren't sure, the several species of bumblebee can be told apart by the colours of their abdomen - the furry back end of their bodies.

message 15: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
An Australian wild bee is nesting in polystyrene.

A study found the bees preferred to use this material rather than natural. However, the offspring survival needs to be studied.

message 16: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
Australian wild bees are being studied more, to find what habitats they specifically need, given the destruction of the bushfire summer.

One bee only nested in small holes in Banksia bushes.

message 17: by Brian (new)

Brian Burt | 426 comments Mod
Still wondering if the Asian giant hornets now detected in the US Pacific Northwest are a danger to already stressed honeybees?

An Expert Explains What We Really Need to Understand About Those 'Murder Hornets'

message 18: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
Murder Hornets? Help!

message 19: by Clare (last edited May 23, 2020 04:25AM) (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
Bumblebees have been found to bite plants to stimulate them into blooming early. As bumblebees can tolerate cold better than honeybees, they come out earlier in the year and at higher latitudes.
If they come out and no plants are blooming, because climate warming has stopped hibernation early in spring, they've got to get some flowers to appear.

This could be the saving of a honeybee hive, (not mentioned) because if they come out early, the bumblebees will have already caused flowers.

The original report:

message 20: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
A new study finds only well fed larvae get to be good queens. Royal jelly alone doesn't do it - they need a lot of food.

message 21: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
"The United Nations warns that 40 percent of invertebrate pollinators—in particular bees and butterflies—risk global extinction.

In Malaysia, green activists founded the "My Bee Savior Association" to help stem the decline.

When the group is tipped off about nests in areas such as under roofs and near trees, their volunteers try to carefully remove the bees and take them to new sites.

One of Ooi's recent cases was in the car park of an apartment building in Kuala Lumpur, whose managers had reported a suspected nest."

message 22: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
More about the honey bee species whose workers can reproduce by cloning.
The queens can do this too. With different results.

More information: Benjamin P. Oldroyd et al, Adaptive, caste-specific changes to recombination rates in a thelytokous honeybee population, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences (2021). DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2021.0729
Journal information: Proceedings of the Royal Society B

message 23: by Clare (new)

Clare O'Beara | 5935 comments Mod
Recommending a book: fiction about a beekeeper and her young apprentices. This is an adult read.
The Music of Bees
The Music of Bees by Eileen Garvin

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