Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Regarding Bees

I know, I know, my blog is called Bee’s Nest and I haven’t written anything about bees. First, I never really intended to write much about bees. The blog title is because Bob and Brenda both begin with the letter B so I could have called it B’s Nest. But since Bob is a hobbyist beekeeper (actually I guess the new term is sideliner), I liked the way it looked better as Bees Nest. And to be honest, the idea is not original—my stepdaughter-in-law, Patti suggested it as a name for our farm that Bob dreams about having.

We did watch the PBS program on Sunday night called Silence of the Bees. It is about the disappearance of bees called CCD (Colony Collapse Disorder). If CCD goes unchecked without determining a cause and cure, there will be unimaginable consequences regarding our food supply—not only in the US but worldwide. One section of the PBS program showed an area of China where all bees have disappeared and the Chinese people need to hand pollinate to get crops. Of course, people are not nearly as efficient and it is very tedious and laborious so the yields are small. CCD is a serious problem but many people are working on solving the mystery. I have not lost sleep over this problem but I certainly don’t want to be complacent either. We are thankful for the research being done and will support it. Regarding bees, we do hold them in high regard.

Personally, we have not lost bees to CCD. We did lose quite a few hives last year. We aren’t sure if it was poor beekeeping skills or weather—probably a little of both. You would think since beekeeping is such a very old science that there would be a tried and true recipe book. Follow this and you will have healthy bees and lots of honey. Like everything in life, it just is not that simple. New predicaments appear just as answers are found for last year’s dilemmas. Our honey crop was much smaller this year—around 600 pounds compared to 1200 pounds last year. Bob keeps reading, studying and learning. He just ordered some insulated boxes for keeping the bees from getting too cold this winter. He is mixing and cooking and feeding the bees now so hopefully we will have healthy hives that winter well. Meanwhile my advice to the rest of you is from Proverbs 24:13, Eat honey, my son/daughter, for it is good; sweet to the soul and health to the bones.

Harvesting our honey

Helpers: Grif and Kevin

More Helpers

Tasters-Morgan and Jessica

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