bees, honey and other sticky subjects

Saturday, December 09, 2006


Inscentinel's explosives-smelling bees appeared to have bombed in experiments in the USA. They could smell explosives alright, but they were regarded as being unreliable in wars.


Should nature be legal?

Dave Barry asks if nature should be legal. After a few stories about woodchucks acting in a suspicious manner, squirrels charging children, squirrels being eloctrocuted and falling to the ground and causing a bush fire, he retells this:
“A TV reporter’s hair gel apparently attracted a swarm of bees that stung him more than 30 times yesterday.” The reporter was doing a story about beekeeping when the attack occurred; the story states that the beekeeper, in an effort to help, covered the reporter’s head with a protective hood, but unfortunately, the hood “also turned out to contain bees.”


Where there's manuka, there's money

Comvita, the New Zealand bee products company, has done a NZ$4 million deal with Waikatio Univertsity for intellectual property and patent rights for manuka honey. Manuka's health-giving properties are being increasingly recognised.

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Friday, December 08, 2006

Axis of apiculture

Beekeeping is up-and-coming in Syria. It held its first beekeepers' conference this weekand the Agriculture Minister said it was one of the most important brannches of agricultural investment. Syria had nearly half a million beehives in 2005 producing 2100 tons of honey and 85 tons of wax.

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Rhubarb, rhubarb, rhubarb

It might just be under-reporting, but the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is investigating oxalic acid as a varroa treatment. Oxalic acid has been used by some beekeepers in Europe for many years now (it's not that popular though).

In fact as far as I understand it, the UK authorities are turning a blind eye to its use even though it's not regulated. I'm not sure if the American researchers have a new angle on its use.

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Thursday, December 07, 2006

Kellogg's bumble

If you ever thought that Kellogg's Cornflakes were an odd sort of food and that their corn looked rather peculiar, you will not be surprised at their latest (British) TV advert for Honeyed Cornflakes. It's a very smart advert with animated bees flying around -- the only problem is they are bumble bees.

So I'm not quite sure how they gathered bumble bee honey to put on those corn flakes.