Please join Project Apis m. for our first webinar of 2020.
We hope to see you there! Click here to join us June 23rd at 10:00am Pacific Time.
Download the Webinar Flyer with Links Here
The PAm Wildflower Mix pictured here is designed to increase the density, diversity and duration of blooming plants available for foraging bees. Different flowers bloom at different times of the year providing extended nutritional benefits for pollinators. Seeds for Bees cover crop and wildflower seed mixes can help farmers and growers become Bee Friendly Certified!
Bee Friendly Farming (BFF) is a farm certification program dedicated to providing farmers science-based guidelines to provide a healthy habitat for managed and native pollinators on their operations. Since 2013, the program has certified over 800 farms across North America through an online self-certification. Bee Friendly Farming is an initiative of Pollinator Partnership, the world’s largest non-profit dedicated exclusively to the protection and promotion of pollinators and their ecosystems. For more information about Pollinator Partnership and Bee Friendly Farming, visit pollinator.org/bff or Bee Friendly Farming on Facebook.
Bee Friendly Farming works closely with our partners Project Apis m. and its Seeds for Bees program to help farmers make good seed choices and incorporate cover crops into their management practices for free or at a reduced cost. Just like the synergy and mutual benefits of a cover crop to farm and pollinator, our partnership with Seeds for Bees mean that we can introduce our BFF members to a program offering superior and proven seed mixes. And Seeds for Bees can help promote Bee Friendly Farming certification.
In 2006, Project Apis m. began working diligently for commercial beekeepers by investing in research and science to solve honey bee health challenges. Founders contributed funds to support applied research projects to answer priority questions. Since then, PAm has become the largest honey bee non-profit. It has invested over $8 Million in 118 practical research projects and over $2 Million in restoring habitat to provide nutrition to honey bees. We think of ourselves as “by the beekeepers, for the beekeepers,” and strive to be the go-to resource for answers. We are proud of where we are, excited by where we are going, and we know that none of this would have been possible without the vision, hard work, and tireless enthusiasm of Project Apis m’s founding leader – Christi Heintz. With Christi’s recent untimely passing, we hope you will join us in recognizing her contributions and the legacy she left for the beekeeping industry, through her leadership and friendship by contributing to the Christi Heintz Memorial Award.
While toilet paper was undoubtedly the hottest commodity this spring, the rush to stock up on pantry items also included honey. Are people buying it because it is comforting? Or because they know it does not go bad? The global pandemic has led to all kinds of anomalies and challenges so far this year. Here are some of the ways we have seen beekeepers and researchers respond.
Many of us know blueberries as the tart and sweet fruit that is mixed into yogurt or made into muffins. Beekeepers know blueberries as a source of pollination income year after year, often right on the heels of almond pollination. If the blueberry bushes bloom early, as they did this year in some areas, there can be a rush to get the bees there to pollinate in time.
Healthy Hives 2020 is a partnership between Project Apis m. and Bayer to support needed research and practical projects. This multi-year, $1.3 million research initiative is laser focused on finding measurable and tangible solutions for beekeepers to improve U.S. honey bee colony health. With PAm’s administrative support, Healthy Hives 2020 has funded 14 research and collaborative projects.
There has been a buzz of information this week about the "murder wasp". If you are looking for factual information about the Asian Giant Hornet, here is a good fact sheet from Washington State University. And here is a report on its damage in Asia, translated at The Ohio State University:
photo by Washington State Department of Agriculture. Not for commercial use. photo URL.
This video also shows how it raids a honey bee hive. If you live in an affected area, check out the Washington State Department of Agriculture's website for resources on what the wasp looks like, how to report a sighting, and a friendly reminder to stay safe.
For honey bees, queen health is synonymous with colony health. Failing queens are a common reason cited for colony losses. New research, funded in part by PAm, describes conditions when queens might be vulnerable to heat stress, which could damage fertility.
The first round of the North American Mite-A-Thon is right around the corner. From May 2nd through May 17th submit your mite counts to help keep track of varroa across the United States, Canada, and Mexico.
You can also participate in the second round of mite counting, August 15th through August 30th.
Use a sugar shake, or an alcohol wash, to measure your varroa and submit your data here. The Honey Bee Health Coalition has a video demonstrating both methods.
On March 6, Washington State University (WSU) opened the doors to it’s new Honey Bee & Pollinator Research, Extension and Education Facility. WSU says “the new facility will give the research team enough room to do commercial-scale experiments. They will be able to measure the effectiveness of controlled atmosphere storage and dial in the best way for beekeepers to use it to help their bees.” As indoor storage becomes a more widely used management practice for commercial beekeepers, the new WSU facility is an important tool for researchers to help beekeepers understand and use Best Management Practices surrounding the practice.