A Call To Action: Sows Seeds in September
Project Apis m. is working to build a sustainable honeybee supply for pollination services in California. This can be done through floral diversity. Would you like to help us develop bee forage? Are you interested in providing nutrition for over-wintering bees in California? PAm will provide the seed, if you plant it. We provide seed mixes that have a low-moisture requirement. Sow seeds in early Fall to take advantage of the winter rains. If you are a CA grower or landowner/manager desiring to participate, contact us at ProjectApism@gmail.com. To learn more click here.
Honeybee forage planted in a young almond orchard
Stanislaus County, CA
Photo by Meg Ribotto 2012
Preparing Honeybee Colonies for CA Border Inspection Stations
PAm, in conjuction with the CA State Beekeepers Association (CSBA), is working with the CA Border Inspection Stations click here to help alleviate the stress caused by heat and dehydration that honeybee colonies suffer during the transportation of colonies to pollinate almonds and other crops. Efforts are being made to increase the number of hose bibs at those border stations that inspect the most honeybee colonies. Out-of-state beekeepers are encouraged to: 1. Outfit trucks with soaker hoses and carrying additional hoses and sprinklers click here; 2. Obtain "Ant Free" Certification and; 3. Keep pallets as clean as possible - free from soil, weeds and plant debris. To assist beekeepers, PAm has a PDF which can be downloaded by clicking here and a BMP video on YouTube narrated by PAm scientific advisor, Dr. Gordon Wardell. This 5-6 minute video covers the topic of honeybee colonies entering California to pollinate almonds and other crops. Border inspection stations and how to prepare for mandatory inspections are some of the issues addressed. To view the Transportation video click here.
Blythe, CA Border Inspection Station
I-10 crossing the Colorado River
Photo by Meg Ribotto 2012
PAm Research Funding Builds Bee Labs
Adding to the $214,121 in 2012 projects already underway, PAm's July board meeting resulted in three additional projects to add to the year's funded research. The new projects include a contribution of $43,500 toward establishing Dr. Michelle Flenniken's new bee lab at Montana State University, Bozeman. Her lab will focus on honey bee virology and immunology and she will work toward developing a quantitative assay to test for sub-lethal pesticide effects. Dr. Jaime Ellis' lab at the University of Florida will receive $16,835 to employ RNAi technology to increase susceptibility of Varroa to miticides. Dr. Stephen Martin, University of Sheffield, UK, together with Dr. Ethel Villalobos, University of Hawaii, will receive $32,556 to study the honey bee parasite-viral pathogen complex. Their funding will help build the in-house molecular lab at the University of Hawaii.
PAm Completes 'Best Management Practices' SCBGrant on a High-Note
"It has been my pleasure working with you during the 3 yr. term on this grant. You set the standard on utilizing grant funds to the fullest to enhance California's Specialty Crop Block Grant Program." so concludes Faye Ison, Grant Analyst, CDFA. PAm accomplished the following:
- $254,400.00 awarded over a 3-year period
- 33 Presentations throughout the U.S.
- 27 Tradeshows on local and national levels
- 4 Brochures produced on BMP's for beekeepers
- 1 Analytical Lab Directory for Beekeepers
- 6 Facts Sheets outlining BMP's for Beekeepers
- 4 You Tube Videos
- 6 Elearning Modules on BMP's
Brochures, lab directory, fact sheets, You Tube videos and the elearning modules can be accessed by clicking here.
In the News
PAm was featured in The Western Farm Press click here. The article, 'Almond Growers Play Part in Pollinator Health', highlites PAm's forage field trials in California. This project is to benefit all beekeepers who bring colonies to California for pollination services. Providing abundant and diverse forage for honeybees is our goal!
MORE...In the News
PLoS ONE has published a study supported by a grant from PAm. Kim Stoner, Dept. of Entomology with the Connecticut Ag Experimental Station, explains that the "goal of our project was to quantify movement of two neonicotinoid insecticides into the pollen and nectar of plants when applied directly to the soil, either by direct spray to the soil just before seeding or through drip irrigation." To read the article click here.
Also published in PLoS One, click here, is what scientists are saying about CCD. ARS and the Dept's of Entomology at NCSU and University of Maryland 'further explore the connections between pathogens and CCD via a country-wide survey of pathogens in collapsed and healthy colonies. This survey includes but expands upon samples previously collected and analyzed'. Over 100 hives from 9 states were sampled.
Pollination Contracts - Don't Procrastinate!
Have your almond pollination contract in place by the end of summer at the latest. By securing a contract you will know what to invest in making your colonies healthy and strong by almond bloom - February 1st, 2013. A signed contract protects both growers and beekeepers. PAm has a pollination contract 'template' at Click here.
September Bee Husbandry
- Nutrition: Fall is a critical time to maintain bee strength and build baby bees for almond pollination.
- Forage can be limited in early Fall - supplemental feeding is critical.
- Requeen: Over-wintering colonies fare better if young.
- Inspect & Monitor: Continue to inpect colonies & apply treatments as necessary to control pests & diseases.
- Transportation: Prepare colonies for transport to CA
- Business Management: Maintain a reserve - don't commit all your colonies to contract.
- Colony Management: Check frames of brood for intended strength to coincide with almond bloom.
Driftwatch - Adds Colorado
Driftwatch was developed to help pesticide applicators, especially specialty crop growers and stewards of at-risk habitats, to communicate more effectively. Using Google Maps, GPS, and the internet, Driftwatch is an online registry that helps pesticide applicators locate registered areas BEFORE they spray. With this tool, applicators can be certain about the whereabouts of beehives in an area and can contact those hives owner when spraying is scheduled there. This will give the beekeeper the time they need to protect their colonies from the chemicals to be applied. Go to www.Driftwatch.org or click here to voluntarily register. This 'working together' approach is being adopted by more and more states.
| Elearning Modules on PAm Website
|PAm has developed and implemented an outreach program of sustainable Best Management Practices (BMPs) for beekeepers. Modules can be accessed online for Nutrition, Varroa Control, Nosema & other areas. Click here to view the modules. These short, fun and educational models are designed for honey bee enthusiasts of all levels. Start learning today!
| Bee Forage Resources
| PAm is building honey bee populations by building food resources. We are looking at wildflower mixtures and oilseed crops as a means of providing sustainable nutrition for bees. Click here to view PAm's forage resource page.
Mark Your Calendar - Upcoming Beekeeping Conferences
WAS - October 4 - 7, 2012 Seattle, WA
NAPPC - October 17 - 19, 2012, D.C.
CSBA - November 12 - 16, 2012 Cabazon, CA
ABF - January 8 - 12, 2013 Hershey, PA
AHPA - January 8 - 12, 2013 San Diego, CA
The Almond Board of California celebrates its 40th Anniversary December 11 - 13, 2012 at the Sacramento Convention Center. A 'Pollination Pavillion' will be featured again this year at the conference.
| Reading The Beekeeper's Lament?
|If not, NOW is the time to purchase the book. Why? $5 from every sale will go to PAm to fund honey bee research. This critically acclaimed and national best seller by Hannah Nordhaus can be purchased by clicking on the image. Read about PAm board member John Miller, a 4th generation beekeeper. Find out what it takes to pollinate crops to feed the nation. |