bees, honey and other sticky subjects

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Beekeeping, food security and bee bargers

The UN sees beekeeping as one of the 170 projects to be encouraged in tackling food security for 20 million people in the Horn of Africa.
“We have identified what works best and where. The biggest challenge is to scale up successes to extinguish hunger in the Horn rather than just fighting fires each time one breaks out.”
Meantime, beekeeping has hit a problem from bee bargers in another poor area, Uganda:
However, because of the destruction of the natural vegetation in search of firewood, most families that rear wild bees have lately been frustrated by strange small dog-like animals called bee bargers, and drought. The animals which used to survive on wild bees in the natural forests have now turned to domestic hives as most of their habitat has been destroyed.

“We used to harvest honey three times a year and would get 60 kilos of honey per hive. We sell each kilo at Shs6,000. However, our hives have been invaded by the bee bargers that eat both the honey and the bees,” Ms Phoebe Awere of Aluyi sub-county in Nebbi district said. Awere who is an established bee keeper however, didn't have bees in most of her hives, something she attributes to lack of access to water.



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