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Genome Sequence of Paenibacillus larvae - the bacillus causing AFB in Honey Bees - Updated

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Pune, September 17, 2011: Soon after the Apis mellifera genome sequence was studied, investigations on genomes of honey bee pathogens, like Paenibacillus larvae, Nosema ceranae and Ascosphaera apis have been taken up. Qin and four other researchers from the Human Genome Sequencing Center, Houston, Texas, Bee Research Laboratory, USDA, Beltsville, Maryland and the Honey Bee Unit, USDA, Weslaco, Texas, USA have in 2006 reported1 genome sequence of Paenibacillus larvae, the pathogen causing American foulbrood disease in honey bees.

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Training Course on Queen Bee Rearing at PAU during October 12-14, 2011

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Pune, September 16, 2011 (contributed by Dr. Pardeep Kumar Chhuneja): The Department of Entomology, Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana (PAU) will organize an advanced training course in "Bee Breeding and Mass Queen Bee Rearing Techniques" at PAU, Ludhiana, during October 12-14, 2011. This course is specifically meant for experienced and progressive beekeepers having large apiary units and practising innovative and scientific beekeeping, and is meant to equip them with the bee breeding and mass queen bee rearing techniques, so that they can rear quality queen bees for their own stock multiplication, for requeening and for commercial purposes. They will get training particularly in the rigorous colony selection and selective breeding techniques. Dr. Balwinder Singh, Head, Department of Entomology, PAU, says that this training course is one step ahead towards diversification of Punjab beekeeping. Dr. Pardeep Kumar Chhuneja, Incharge of Apiculture Unit of the PAU is the Technical Coordinator of the programme.

Honey Bee Language Being Investigated

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Pune, September 13, 2011: A news report dated September 11, 2011 by Jenny Fyall in Scotland on Sunday says that Scottish researchers led by scientists at the University of Dundee are monitoring different noises honey bees make inside their hive, in order to find out if the bees have an as-yet-unknown language. The researchers believe that honey bees make different noises, for example, when they have some disease, or when they have lost their queen or when they experience pesticide poisoning. The £ 2 million project involves monitoring the sounds made by bees in 100 hives in different locations in Scotland.The number of hives will increase as the project advances.

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Honey Production This Year from Rockbee Colonies Down in Kerala

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Pune, September 6, 2011: Further to the news in May 2011, of declining honey production in Kerala (see news dated May 9, 2011 in this site), a news report dated September 6, 2011 in Manorama Online says that wild honey production from rockbee colonies has fallen sharply to less than 50 per cent in the Wayanad district in Kerala. According to the secretary, Sulthan Bathery ST Cooperative Society which gathers honey from wild bee hives found in forests of the Wayanad Wild Life Sanctuary area, honey procurement fell by 56.8 per cent from 21,000 kg in 2009-2010.

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Beekeeping with Apis mellifera in India

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Pune, August 18, 2011: Beekeeping with Apis mellifera is now popular in several regions in India, including Jammu & Kashmir, Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal. Management of mellifera bee colonies involves their migration to locations with rich forage potential. Though beekeepers are undertaking migration for production, there is a great scope to increase the efficiency and improve honey production. This can be facilitated with a knowledge of floral resources and evolving appropriate migration schedules for different beekeeping regions. K. Lakshmi Rao and K. Subba Rao, researchers at the Central Bee Research and Training Institute, Pune made a detailed study of the floral resources for A. mellifera in India and seasons for honey production in different regions. They suggest various migration schedules for different phytogeographic regions in the country in a paper presented at the State-level Seminar on 'Awareness, Motivation and Technology Transfer for Development of Beekeeping in Andhra Pradesh', held on January 8-9, 2011 at Jangareddygudem, West Godavari district, Andhra Pradesh. Reproduced hereunder is the paper taken from the Souvenir issued on the occasion by the National Bee Board, Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India.

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