Langstroth, Warre, Topbar, longlang, Layen – does the type of equipment really matter? I got a call from a lady whose son was keeping bees in a Slovakian style hive his uncle built for him and he was having a blast! The colony was growing leaps and bounds and he said he has realized there are different buzzes the bees make depending on what is going on. This is exciting to me because I know those sounds too! I have learned to listen and hear the buzzing in the hive as I inspect, to notice the tone and intensity. Those same cues tell me if a colony is queenless as the noise is actually the sound of wings beating, spreading, or attempting to spread pheromones around – effectively smelling for the presence of the queen. So, what does the sound of bees have to do with equipment choice? Well, really nothing. And that’s my point. Beekeeping to me is not about the boxes, choice of tools, methods, or how many hives you have, rather, are you enjoying it? Sometimes the tried and true paths offer the “safety in numbers” concept, but the other methods can work to. They do. They are just different.
I have also been fascinated with the research on the ankle biter bees as of late, you know the bees purported to bite off the legs of the small hive beetle(SHB). At least one team is trying to develop a genetic line of bees that consistently displays this behavior generation after generation. There seems to be some difficulty in reproducing this behavior. Time will tell I guess.
I hope you can find time to join us for our monthly meetings, the next several months will bring some new speakers with information that I hope you will find both informative, and entertaining.
Thanks for being a part of our group, and I’ll see you at the next meeting!