“The American Beekeeping Federation in Reno”
Bee Culture (Mar, Apr, May, June 2005), Vol. 133
Joint Meetings with AIA, ABRC and AAPA
Dr. Malcolm T. Sanford
Jointly held meetings of professionals
appear to be a thing of the future as organizational budgets, especially for
travel, are increasingly being reduced.
Thus, two other associations also held their annual meeting in
conjunction with that of the American Beekeeping Federation (ABF) in Reno, Nevada.1 They are represented by three acronyms
for associations that have had, and in the future will have, importance in a
continuing dialogue with the beekeepers of North America.
The Apiary Inspectors of America (AIA) is the oldest U.S. group to
be described here. As its name suggests,
it is the official association of state regulators. Its mission is to “promote better beekeeping
conditions in North America mainly through
more uniform and effective laws and methods for the suppression of bee
diseases, and mutual understanding and cooperation between apiary inspection
officials, and by the presentation of new information and ideas as
developed.” The statement is found on
its web site hosted at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture.2 Also found there is a comprehensive directory
of state apiarists for both the U.S. and Canada. The AIA meets every year to discuss the
inspection situation across the nation.
Often scientists are invited to speak at AIA meetings and the Association
offers an award of apicultural excellence to someone who has contributed to
their mission in either research or education (extension). The meeting sessions are generally open to
the public, and the Association rotates its gatherings among beekeeping groups,
and both scientific and university laboratories. The AIA will next meet in conjunction with
two other groups described below (ABRC and AAPA) at the Baton
Rouge, LA, Stock Center
and Bee Laboratory.
The American Bee Research Conference (ABRC) is the brainchild of Drs. Joe
Moffett (retired from the United States Department of Agriculture) and John Harbo of the Baton Rouge Bee Laboratory.3 Too much cannot be said about the effort that
Dr. Harbo has put into this conference over the last
decade and a half. Without his vision
and hard work, the ABRC would have remained only an idea whose time might have
come. He has truly made it into an
institution without which beekeepers and the research community would be a
great deal poorer.
The idea of the ABRC is to have a common forum where those interested in
current research can discuss their work in an informal way. The work is presented as an “abstract,” with
a maximum of 540 words accompanied by a graph or table. An oral presentation by
the investigator at the meeting then fleshes out the idea behind the work to
the audience, and that is followed by a give and take question and answer
session. An “abstract” is not
technically considered “published,” work and so the author can still publish
information at a later time somewhere else.
Not only are scientists
allowed to discuss work that is underway without penalty through the ABRC, and
in the process exchange valuable ideas, but also the beekeeping community
becomes informed about current research efforts on its behalf. The abstracts are published as a composite
work each year in the American Bee
Journal; for which the authors pay a publication charge. This means that beekeepers not attending the
actual meeting can still become informed about work in progress. Anyone who wishes can present an abstract by
simply sending an idea to the organizers of the Conference in advance of the
meeting. Significantly, anyone who has
research information can be a presenter.
Most, but not all, papers are given by scientists employed at the bee
labs or universities.
For many years, professionals
who taught beekeeping, regulated the craft and did
research in the U.S.
have looked somewhat enviously to our northern neighbor. The Canadian Association of Professional
Apiculturists (CAPA), which encompasses teaching (extension), research and
regulatory (bee inspection) takes a direct leadership role in apicultural
events.4 It works closely
with the Canadian Honey Council (CHC)5 which represents producers
and packers throughout Canada..
CAPA develops educational material and organizes professional
initiatives. It publishes one of the
least expensive, comprehensive bulletins on Honey Bee Diseases, now in its
third edition, and sold by supply and other publication outlets in the U.S. It was responsible for perhaps one of the
best organized Apimondia meetings to date, the one
commemorating beekeeping entering the new millennium in Vancouver, British Columbia
in 1999. Annually it awards student
merit scholarships and jointly administers, the Canadian Bee Research Fund
(CBRF), which awards funding to a wide variety of investigators. The CBRF is entirely supported by donations
from the apiculture industry and is a unique partnership between CAPA and CHC
In 1979, a
fledgling effort spearheaded by ideas fromDrs. E.C. (Bert) Martin, Hachiro
Shimanuki and Basil Furgala
to form an apicultural professional group stalled. However, the idea seemed sound to most in the
field. Apicultural researchers and
extension folks in the U.S.
were largely a fragmented bunch with no forum for promoting communication or
unity. Thus, in Orlando, FL
in 1983 at a meeting of the AIA, a new association became a reality. It seemed reasonable to name it after the
successful Canadian model (CAPA), and so American Association of Professional
Apiculturists (AAPA) was adopted. Many
in the community still remember this event, hosted by then Florida chief apiarist Jim Herndon. We consummated the formation of the AAPA by
downing quantities of the Sunshine state’s premier corn on the cob (many know
it as the famous Zellwood, FL sweet corn) in January.
Yours truly was the charter
president of the AAPA. I edited a paper
newsletter for the group from 1983 until 1994, and published a membership
directory, which is now maintained on the World Wide Web.6 AAPA also took direction from CAPA and each
year a member from one group now attends the other group’s meeting.
In 1992, celebrating the
first decade of AAPA’s existence, the Association
took a step back to see where it had gone with respect to a vision by Dr. Harry
Laidlaw suggesting it should:
- Brief and “popularize” scientific papers
appearing in journals.
- Do selected scientific paper review on articles
having practical application
- Introduce itself to the industry through journals
- Members introduce themselves by a brief article
in the journals
- Feature some research or activity that has
benefited beekeeping and is doing so today.
- Keep pounding beekeepers with what bee scientists
are doing for beekeeping.
The AAPA had pursued a number
of these goals in the early days of its history, but often fell short for the
same reason that it was formed in the first place, fragmented membership and
lack of unity of purpose. Nevertheless,
some concrete goals were accomplished.
It had managed to meet every year since its inception, something that
many in the early years did not think possible.
In addition, AAPA had become a forum for idea sharing through regular
meetings and an Internet discussion list.
In 1995, the Association
underwent a comprehensive review under the leadership of then president, Dr.
Keith Delaplane, at the University of Georgia,
and took another step toward adopting much of Dr. Laidlaw’s vision by fusing
with and regularly sponsoring the American Bee Research Conference (ABRC). The review committee also recommended that
the two organizations fuse with the AIA, but this has yet to be
accomplished. In addition, the
Association began to be more proactive in its outreach to the national
beekeeping associations, meeting with both the ABF and American Honey Producers
Association (AHPA)7 as well as the AIA.
AAPA has also been successful
in selling resource materials, including CAPA publications. The Association still has an inventory of its
latest work for sale, Bee Pollinators in
Your Garden, Technical Bulletin Number 2, published in 1999. This slick 18-page booklet is available
through the web page and has color pictures of honey bees and most other wild
bees from the southeastern blueberry bee (Habrapoda laboriosa) to the popular bumble bee (Bombus sp.). The audience is the average citizen who might
be interested in some aspect of pollination.
As I write this, the AAPA
remains a strong association with a substantial treasury and stable
membership. Many of its members do serve
the beekeeping industry in various capacities suggested by Dr. Laidlaw, though
not necessarily under the strict rubric of the AAPA. Certainly more needs to be done to bring the
AAPA more recognition within the beekeeping community similar to that enjoyed
by the CAPA. Perhaps a missing link is
input by the beekeeping associations themselves about how AAPA might further
assist them in their endeavors. This
article may start a meaningful dialogue with this purpose in mind.
- American Beekeeping Federation Web Page, accessed
February 22, 2005 <http://www.abfnet.org>.
- Apiary Inspectors of American Web Page, accessed
February 22, 2005 <http://www.mda.state.mn.us/apiary/aiahome.htm>.
- Baton Rouge Bee Lab Web Page, accessed February
22, 2005 <http://msa.ars.usda.gov/la/btn/hbb/staff.htm>.
- Canadian Association of Professional
Apiculturists Web Page, accessed February <http:/www.capabees.ca/>.
- Candian Honey Council Web Page, accessed February 22,
- American Association of Professional
Apiculturists Web Page, accessed February 22, 2005 <http://entomology.ucdavis.edu/aapa/>.
- American Honey Producers Association Web Page,
accessed February 22, 2005 <http://www.americanhoneyproducers.org/>.
I was gratified to see a more
international flavor at the Reno Convention of the American Beekeeping
Federation than in the recent past. This
bodes well for U.S.
beekeepers, who are often insulated from events in
other nations that can materially affect them.
Those involved included managers of German honey laboratories as
reported in an earlier article summarizing issues surrounding the international
honey trade, along with officials from the Honey International Packers Assocation (HIPA).
Two others, who brought different perspectives on breeding and managing
honey bees in specific environments, deserve mention. Finally, there was an invitation to the world
congress this year in Dublin,
Dr. John Kefuss
is involved in queen rearing operations in both the Old (France) and New (Chile) World. He is a student of two apicultural research
giants, Dr. Walter Rothenbuhler father of hygienic
behavior (see Bee Culture, March 2003) and Dr. Fredrich
Ruttner of Germany, considered the
contemporary authority on classifying honey bee races.
is bringing his considerable knowledge about queen genetics and breeding to
bear on the issue of the day, tolerance (resistance) to Varroa
mites. In both France and Chile, he is employing a strategy
that is similar to that used by Brother Adam in his successful attempt to
produce tracheal-mite-resistant queens.
The overriding consideration is selection for certain measurable traits,
with the ultimate test being survivability.
This results in automatically selecting against susceptible drones. Thus, Dr. Kefuss
said that selection is really nothing more than a process of elimination. His breeding principles include 1) selecting
bees that meet one’s economic needs, and 2) employing simple tests with low
labor input, and finally 3) eliminating all chemical treatments. Within this context, he concentrates on
selecting for colonies that collect pollen, are “hygienic,” have limited
numbers of Varroa mites, and finally, are
example of meeting economic needs, Dr. Kefuss has
eliminated all chemical treatments from colonies in France
that are used as breeder colonies and honey producers, but still finds he must
treat colonies in Chile
because they are necessary for commercial pollinating activities. Pollen collection is easily measured through
trapping. Hygienic behavior is tested
using the standard technique of determining the amount of killed brood removed
by colonies over a discrete period of time.
Varroa counts on adults and brood provide an
estimate of tolerance, with susceptible colonies left to handle infestations on
their own. This all takes time,
according to Dr. Kefuss, but the end product is worth
it; some of the results are being advertised on the Pacific Queens web site
through his Chilean partner, Francisco Rey.1 Much of what Dr. Kefuss
discussed has also been published elsewhere on the World Wide Web, albeit in
the French language.2
has seen survival increase in colonies since 1993 in France through use of his James
Bond test, “live and let die.” This is often
not rapid enough to confer Varroa tolerance for his
taste, and so he has also implemented the “Bond accelerated treatment” or
brood is directly introduced into colonies to provide greater challenges. In many cases 90 percent of the colonies so
infested are dead in less than six months, but the ones that survive are good
candidates for further breeding efforts.
To maintain tolerance (resistance) Dr. Kefuss
instrumentally inseminates daughters of resistant queens, and then spreads them
out in different bee yards, where they are often naturally mated. In his own words, “Actually what we do is
even more simple. Once we have selected breeder queens we produce virgins from
them that are taken to out yards to mate. We also sometimes inseminate to
produce breeder queens from our best stock. From these inseminated breeder
queens we produce virgins that we mate naturally. So actually a beekeeper does
not have to use insemination at all and should be able to get very good
The main problem of modern
beekeeping according to Dr. Kefuss is chemical
treatment. This does not allow the bee’s
evolutionary mechanisms to work. The
success of his work in both parts of the world is the proof of the pudding he
concluded. One of the practical results
that he finds is that it is increasingly difficult to find Varroa
that can be used in the selection process.
Recently, he presented his observations on “Honey bee management in Europe: the new challenge” at the First EurBee Conference of Apidology in
19-23 September 2004.3
occasionally visits his family in the U.S. His ninety-year-old mother, Martha Pemberton
continues to organize and inform beekeepers from her residence, 2122 23rd
St., NE, Canton, OH 44705 <e-mail: email@example.com>, as she has done for
decades. Finally, as will be described
later, the new queen importation rules soon to go into effect may well mean we
could see Dr. Kefuss’ Pacific queens from Chile or
those from his French operation in the U.S. in the near future.
The statement that “Varroa is not a problem and no treatment is necessary”
cannot but turn the head of any beekeeper facing this introduced exotic pest in
most of the rest of the world. It is
even more bizarre coming on the heels of a presentation describing the time and
effort it takes to maintain Varroa tolerance or
resistance in selected honey bee stocks.
But that is in fact the case in Brazil. Dr. Lionel Gonçalves
of the University
of São Paulo provided
those in attendance with a different perspective on the beekeeping craft, which
is now increasing rapidly in the world’s fifth-largest country by area.
It wasn’t always this
way. About four decades ago, Brazilian
beekeeping was in a shambles after arrival of the African honey bee (Apis mellifera scutellata), which was actively hybridizing itself into
what we now call the “Africanized” honey bee or AHB. This was the second of four phases of
beekeeping in the country: 1) limited success with European bees (Apis mellifera mellifera) primarily used by hobbyists from 1830 to
1956, 2) chaos with the introduction of the over defensive African honey
bee as it produced hybrids in 1960s and
1970s, 3) the rebirth of a new kind of beekeeping using the polyhybrid
European - African stock (Africanized bees) from 1970 to 1990, and 4) the
current era of “professional” apiculture through increasing honey production of
“organic” quality and marketing of a good many innovative items based on the
many products of the hive.
Brazil is thus, according to Dr. Gonçalves,
on the verge of becoming one of the world’s great beekeeping centers due to a
huge feral population of Africanized honey bees that is now perfectly adapted
to the vegetational complex (caatinga)
of the country’s vast, sparsely populated northeast. The beekeeping there is much different than
in other parts of the world; management is minimal as beekeepers have an almost
unlimited supply of bees in the bush much like many parts of Africa, and the
bees themselves have become tolerant to Varroa, such
that no treatment is required. This also
provides a perfect environment for producing “organic” honey.
Such a description was sure
to stir up many questions about the role of Africanized honey bees elsewhere in
the Americas, including the U.S.. And Dr. Gonçalves was peppered with so many that special times were
arranged for him to respond outside the formal schedule. His deliberate answers brought into focus the
differences in bee management demanded by specific vegetation and climatic
conditions. They revealed unequivocally
how different are specific management techniques in a temperate land like the
U.S., populated by European bees, which have been devastated by Varroa mites and chemically treated over the last two
decades are from those employed by beekeepers who have access to large feral,
tropical bee populations tolerant to Varroa in
Northeast Brazil. Although much of what
Dr. Gonçalves said could not be applied to U.S. beekeeping
circumstances, this in no way made his presentation less entertaining and
No discussion of Africanized
honey bees is complete without at least referencing the history and risk of
purposeful introduction of honey bee stock.
meeting was a turning point of sorts in this discussion. The Animal :Plant
Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced the beginning of a program enabling
queen importation from both Australia
and New Zealand,
in essence revisiting the rationale for the law that prohibited that practice
since 1922. Dr. Wayne Wehling of that organization described the beginnings of a
protocol that is being developed based on certification from countries doing
the shipping. A description of the risk
assessment process is found on the World Wide Web.4.
concluded that importation seems to be on a fast track, and he looks for some
specific rules to be implemented soon.
World Trade Organization (WTO) considerations appear to be driving this,
and importantly they could end up superseding local regulations, affecting U.S. bee
inspection. For a contrarian view of
the import question, readers are referred to Jim Fisher’s article, “Where are
we going,” in the January 2005 Bee Culture. See why he says, “…we can’t continue to
ignore this in hopes that it will all go away or somehow fix itself. We never get what we deserve,
we only get what we negotiate.”
This year the International
Beekeeping Congress meets in Ireland. And the President of Apimodia
1005 was on hand in Reno to invite U.S. beekeepers
to the Emerald Isle. Mr. Philip McCabe,
President of the Irish Beekeepers Association, provided an engaging and
humorous description of his native land, and a preview of what awaits the world
beekeepers in the land of the “little people.”
The President of Ireland, Mary McAleese, has
announced herself as patron for this event 21-25 August, 2005.5
- Pacifica Queens Web Page, accessed February 22,
- Apiservices Web Page, accessed February 22, 2005<http://www.beekeeping.com/rfa/articles/chili.htm>.
- First European Bee Conference of Apidology Web site, accessed
February 22, 2005 <http://web.uniud.it/eurbee/Proceedings/Program.pdf>.
- APHIS Web Page on queen introduction risk
assessment, accessed February 22, 2005 <http://www.aphis.usda.gov/ppq/pra/honeybees/aushbee_pra.pdf>
position and <http://www.beekeeping.com/articles/us/import_australia.htm>.
- Apimondia 2005 Web Page, accessed February 22, 2005 <http://www.apimondia2005.com>.
Hive Losses and Research Budgeting
was a lot discussion in Reno
concerning unusual winter colony loss of bees around the country. The situation described by some as
catastrophic, with some 50 to 80 percent loss as common, even for beekeepers
with decades of experience. This means
that fewer bees will be available for almond pollination at the very time that
growers are expanding their plantings of this valuable nut. The result is a bidding war for pollination
contracts by growers desperate to ensure a crop. Prices over $100 a colony and more have
appeared. Beekeepers around the nation
are considering moving their pollinating colonies to the West Coast. In other places, like Florida, the situation has been described as
a “giant sucking sound,” as bees are moved from their traditional watermelon
and other cucurbit pollination contracts to almonds. Should this trend continue, it is conceivable
that a total redesign of commercial pollination map by beekeepers is in the works.
seems to be no common denominator as to why bee losses are high. Ideas range from pesticide-tolerant Varroa to viruses to contaminated comb. In response to a resolution in Reno to ask
for more funding for bee research, the Federation has taken the unprecedented
step of asking that it be doubled at the federal level. At the Reno
meeting, Dr. Kevin Hackett, the USDA’s National Program Leader for Bees and
Pollination provided an overview of current activities. These include in the aggregate some
$8,844,000 split up among several research facilities around the nation and
Beltsville Bee Laboratory has the lion’s share of the budget at
$2,052,800. Dr. Mark Feldlaufer
is the research leader and he provided a report on that lab’s activities, which
are mostly directed at Varroa research, but also reproduction
and treating diseases like American foulbrood (AFB). The Baton Rouge Laboratory is not far behind,
accounting for $1,908,500 with Dr. Tom Rinderer as
research leader. The activities are
mostly involved with bee breeding and stock issues; the Russian bee program and
the initiative by Dr. John Harbo in looking at
suppressed mite reproduction (SMR). The
Weslaco Bee Laboratory has a budget of $1,877,800 and has an acting research
leader (Dr. W. Ivie).
There are some vacancies at this lab made more severe with the
unfortunate death of Dr. Patti Elzen. The lab’s mission concentrates on Integrated
Pest Management (IPM) for bee diseases and parasites. The Tucson Laboratory with a budget of
$1,115,300 and Dr. Gloria DeGrandi-Hoffman as
research leader orients its activities to bee health
and pollination, including issues surrounding Africanized honey bees.
well known are activities at the Logan,
UT Laboratory, involved in other
types of bees, but also honey bees with emphasis on Varroa
and chalkbrood with a budget of $1,595,600, research
leader is Dr. W. Kemp. Two other
laboratories have some bee involvement, the Fargo,
ND Laboratory under direction of Dr. G. Yocum ($86,800) with microarray
chips, and the Gainesville,
FL location administered by Dr.
Peter Teal ($207,400). The latter
facility has developed a trap for small hive beetle control, which was
demonstrated at the convention and is under consideration by several
manufacturers. Two other facilities are
also involved in bee research, although there are no funds dedicated to this
activity in the budget described by Dr. Hackett. The Kearneysville,
WV is leading the way with sugar esters for Varroa
control and the Montpellier,
France Laboratory is involved in modeling hive environmental conditions.
recent accomplishments reported in Reno
by Dr. Hackett include:
“At Baton Rouge, Dr. Rinderer’s
group found that Russian Bee resistance to Varroa is
enhanced in apiaries having only Russian colonies. The susceptible stock apparently serves as a
source of infestation for the entire apiary.
Also, Dr. Harbo’s group found that there is no
relationship between the SMR trait and poor brood production – this means it
should be possible to produce a hybrid bee with good beekeeping qualities that
is free of Varroa mites.
“At Beltsville, Dr. Chen’s
lab has found that Varroa mites transit bee viruses –
this potentially implicates the mite in virus-caused hive decline. The transmitted virus was “deformed wing
virus” – one never before detected in the U.S. And Dr. Collins group found that bee queens
inseminated with low viability semen function as well as normally inseminated
queens, at least for one summer season.
“At Tucson, Dr. DeGrandi-Hoffman’s
group has developed a liquid pollen supplement for spring buildup – needed,
particularly, for almond pollination.
The group has also found a natural bee pheromone that acts as a toxicant
to mites – it’s being developed into a product.
“We have also made progress
at two other ARS labs that did not traditionally have program in bees. At Gainesville,
you have already heard Peter Teal describe his small hive beetle trap. This is an example of how we can take
advantage of the ARS distributed network of labs and expertise. Peter’s lab works with attractants, and he
has made quite a find with this trap.
Drs. Puterka and Glenn have been able to apply a
technology that was developed to control aphids – using it for control of Varroa mite. Their
“sugar ester product” is now being marketed.
Since many of you might have tried the product, I’d like your feedback
on whether it has been useful.”
ABF is seeking enough new research funding to employ 16 new scientists,
including two geneticists, two molecular biologists, and two computational
biologists. Unfortunately, the Bush
Administration has called instead for cutting $640,000 Congress has been
providing to the Weslaco
and Baton Rouge Laboratories.
increase in the Federal budget will be a hard sell, but there has never been so
much awareness of bee loss and recognition by growers that pollination is
important. This represents another
“teachable moment,” for those involved in beekeeping. The ABF recommends pulling out all the stops,
and having not only individuals, but also associations contact legislators via
regular and electronic mail. The
newsletter provides a sample letter and various background information
prepackaged for sending to lawmakers. Finding
relevant legislators has never been easier, call the Congressional Switchboard
202-224-3121 and ask for senators and representatives who “handle farming
issues,” or use the World Wide Web and going to <http://www.senate.gov> and <http://www.house.gov>.
Activities of the Foundation
Educational activities of the
American Beekeeping Federation (ABF) are supported by The Foundation for
Preservation of Honeybees, Inc., established in 1999 when it was granted
nonprofit status as a
501(c)(3) corporation by the Internal Revenue Service (deductions
are tax deductible). The Foundation was
recently provided with a major infusion of funds ($50,000) from the estate of
Glenn and Gertrude Overturf.
Three specific activities are
sponsored by the Foundation: 1) the 4-H Beekeeping Essay Contest and 2) Kids n’
Bees program, which are outreach to youngsters in middle and high schools, and elementary schools respectively,
and 3) the Foundation scholars program that provides funds to junior scientists
beginning their careers. The Essay
contest is a continuation of a traditional activity of the Federation that has
been ongoing for many years. The
following was published on the ABF’s web site <http://www.abfnet.org> about the 2004
event: “A beekeeper on the U.S. Supreme
Court? Well that could come to pass if this year’s top essayist has her way. Ashlin Reid, 13, of Statesboro,
Ga., says her dream is to become
a Supreme Court justice, and she has become so attached to beekeeping that she
expects it to remain a lifelong hobby.”
This contest is notoriously
undersubscribed with only entries from 17 of the 50 states last year. One possible reason is that it remains
limited to those active in 4-H, the land grant universities outreach to youth,
and relies on that organization to assist in both managing and judging the
The 2006 competition is now
underway. Full rules are available from
the Federation and will soon be posted on the web site. This year’s
topic is: “Honey Bees in Art and Culture.” The following advice is given: “From
the beginning of the relationship of honey bees and mankind, honey bees have been woven
into art and culture. Essayists should
examine the roles not only of honey bees but also of honey and beeswax in art and
culture.” Those interested are asked to
contact their local Cooperative Extension office for information specific to
their state. The deadline for entries is
March 1, 2006 and the winner will be announced in May of next year.
The other two activities
mentioned above were an integral part of the national convention. Ms. Kim Lehman of Austin, Texas
is the dynamic coordinator of the Kids‘n Bees program financed by the Foundation.
The event was not so evident at the Reno meeting as during other conventions,
because the leadership decided to take it out of the convention venue into
local schools due to the severe weather conditions. Six schools participated, and there was
coverage of the event in both the Reno
Gazette and Sparks Tribune
newspapers. One student was inspired to
begin a science project on honey. This
outreach is considered one of the Federation’s top priorities, given the aging
character of the U.S. beekeeping
It was the first class of
Foundation Scholars that got the bulk of the attention at the Reno Convention
in January. Six graduate students were
selected to receive $2,000 scholarships to continue their education. They also reported on their work to those
attending the general session and were invited to a luncheon in their honor,
presentation by Dr. Dwayne Buxton, Director of the Pacific West
Area Agricultural Research Service, Albany,
The students and their
research focus included:
– University of Nebraska. He is completing his M.S. work
now and will being Ph.D. work in the fall. He has been working on use of
powdered sugar to remove Varroa mites from bees. His
Ph.D. work will continue to focus on Varroa control
– University of Minnesota. For his Ph.D. he is
collecting data on the degree of mite resistance found in Hygenic/SMR
hybrid colonies and investigating the relationship between the two resistance
traits, hygienic behavior and suppression of mite reproduction.
– University of Guelph. Her Ph.D. research involves
manipulating the protein (pollen) status of colonies in fall and early spring
and quantifying the effects on both individual bees and their colonies. She is
also investigating the effects of pollen nutrition on resistance to nosema disease.
Sagili – Texas
For his M.S. research, he is studying the how the pollen from genetically
engineered crops that utilize insecticidal genes might affect the colonies when
pollen from the transgenic plants is fed to larvae.
– University of Nebraska. A high school agricultural
education instructor who has found novel ways to use bees and beekeeping in his
classes, he has enrolled in an M.S. in entomology program and is developing a
beekeeping curriculum for vocational agriculture education programs.
•Robyn Underwood – University of Manitoba. Her M.S. work in formic acid
efficacy was so successful that she was moved into a Ph.D. program where she is
working on fumigating colonies with formic acid in wintering buildings and understanding how
formic acid acts when used on colonies treated outdoors.
The scholars’ presentations
were also published in the Proceedings of the American Bee Research Conference
in the May 2005 issue of American Bee
Journal. This year’s competition is
underway. Inquiries should be directed
to Dr. Marion Ellis, University of Nebraska, Department of Entomology, 202 Plant Industries
NE 68583-0816. Again, information about this program is
expected be available on the Federation’s web site.
The Mission of the Foundation is to preserve and
protect honey bees to ensure a quality food supply and environment. Continuing objectives include 1) enhance and expand the
awareness of the contribution of honey bees to agriculture and to society, 2)
create additional appreciation and interest in the profession of beekeeping
through studies in technical and scientific subjects, 3) strengthen beekeeper
skills through educational programs, and 4) provide resources for continuing
bee research particularly in areas which
will advance bee culture, improve pollination, and conserve biodiversity.
Those interested in
furthering the above goals are asked to forward their contributions to the
trustees of the foundation. The address
is P.O. Box 1337 Jesup (street address is 115 Morning Glory Circle), GA 31598-1038,
phone 912-427-4233, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, .