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Focus on . . . Bees

Once only found in Asia, the honeybee is now found wherever flowers are blooming from the tropics to the cool temperate heights of the Alps or Andes. Production of honey and wax has been held in high esteem for many thousands of years and yet bees are nonetheless undervalued for their industrious contribution to mankind's nutritional requirements. In this edition of New Agriculturist, we focus on the diverse benefits of wild and domesticated bees and the threats, which currently constrain the further development of beekeeping in many regions.


Beekeeping - an activity of past and future millennia

The tradition of beekeeping in Africa dates back almost 5000 years when beehives were first used for producing honey in ancient Egypt. The passage of time has seen the spread of beekeeping from Egypt to the Middle East, throughout . . .

Beekeeping in Uganda

Traditional methods of bee keeping are still predominant in Uganda where it remains an important seasonal activity in many regions. Rural people have a good knowledge of bees, plants and places favoured by bees but hives are . . .

Busy with bees

Beehives are a relatively new sight in the North West Province of Cameroon. They were introduced about ten years ago by Simon Ngwainmbi founder of the BERUDEP community development organization. After a slow start, the hives . . .

Keeping the honey flowing

The Miombo woodlands of Zambia contain many tree species that are ideal for beekeeping. However, the production of honey is often constrained by periods of drought or limited rainfall. Neglected or mis managed hives also . . .

Varroa - a 'mitey' pest of bees

Globalization has opened up new markets for honey and bee products but it has also resulted in the spread of a parasitic pest which threatens beekeepers' colonies, wild bee populations and consequently the . . .

Overcoming the hurdles

Efforts to control Varroa are a worldwide priority, especially as heavy infestations of these parasitic mites render bees vulnerable to secondary viral diseases. However, for many developing countries Varroa is not the main or only obstacle that . . .

All sweetness and light?

Honey is traditionally considered the major product of beekeeping. However, with increasing knowledge about beekeeping and an awareness of the beneficial aspects of many bee products, the use and demand for . . .

The benefit of bees

Forget about honey, pollen and royal jelly. Just think of a world without beans, tomatoes, onions and carrots, not to mention the hundreds of other vegetables, oilseeds and fruits that are dependent upon . . .

The call of the wild

For thousands of years, communities living in tropical forests have harvested honey from the wild. Today, many people in these regions still prefer wild honey to honey harvested from the hives of domesticated bees. But there is growing . . .

Taking a bee tour

Think safari and your mind may conjure up images of lions and elephants and the great African savannah. But think again. Safari, meaning 'journey' in Swahili, involves not only travel but also adventure, learning and experiencing new, exotic . . .

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