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ABF E-Buzz: July 2012
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ABF E-Buzz — July 2012

In This Issue:

Welcome to ABF E-Buzz

by Tim Tucker, ABF Vice President and ABF E-Buzz Editor

Summer is the time when one sheds one's tensions with one's clothes, and the right kind of day is jeweled balm for the battered spirit. A few of those days and you can become drunk with the belief that all's right with the world.Ada Louise Huxtable

Back around 10 years ago I was managing a ranch here in Niotaze that produced registered limousine cattle for sale and we were bringing some bulls up a lane to load out for sale.   These were young mature bulls with lots of energy and it was a scorching summer day.  When you have a half a dozen yearling bulls running together they get to kicking and jumping and usually end up doing things they normally wouldn't if by themselves. Anyway, they made little work of a four-wire fence and were out of the lane into a pasture that was about 110 acres in size. After chasing them around for a couple of hours, we finally got them back into the lane and up to the corral where we could get them loaded on the trailer. Unfortunately, I got really sick and I think suffered a light heat stroke. It took me a couple of days or perhaps even a week to get over it, but you really never get over it as the heat seems to bother you more after an occurrence of getting too hot. So, when it gets to 100 degrees, I just shut down, when possible, and go in to where I can stay cool and hopefully still get some work done. I guess it's part of getting old, as well!

The great news is that during this time of year, my work days can get real short. Today we got to 100 degrees at 10:38 a.m. and I was done as far as the outside hard work for the day. Right now, we are at 111 degrees and it's still not at the top just yet. A couple of days ago I found a box that I had put a box of foundation on a month or two ago, with hopes of big honey coming in and four of the frames of foundation had melted down. I wondered what kind of temps we were getting up to in a box, so I put a thermometer in on the south side of an east facing box. Well, I don't know what it got up to because the thermometer only went to 125 and it blew well past that as you can see! I just don't know how the bees do it.

This year we made sure that all of our bees had afternoon shade because of last year's losses, which were due to the queens just shutting down from rearing brood in the heat and never quite recovering. Unfortunately, the trees that we put them in the shade of are this year defoliating and now a few of the holding yards have only about a 50 percent shade value at best. So, I will be moving bees to better shade for the next month or two while we begin feeding and stimulating again.  Those that we can't move right away we have put shade boards in front of so that the sun will be deflected, at least in part, and it does make a difference. The other big thing is that during this kind of heat there needs to be moisture available for the bees to get to and not too far away from the colony. You can put out watering dishes that are filled with rocks to give the bees perches to access the water without drowning. We are even giving the bees water in the feeders that we normally give sucrose in to help with the cooling of the hive. Anything we can do to make their life a little easier living in boxes that hit 125 degrees plus.

I recently had a great opportunity to visit Wisconsin to share a day with the Wisconsin Honey Producers at their summer meeting in Red Granite and it was a fantastic time.  My hosts,  Mary, Derald and  Anna Kettlewell were so very gracious in welcoming me back to Wisconsin. It was a wonderful visit and we shared some great time together.  On my first day, Derald and I met Anna downtown at a restaurant that served up a grilled romaine salad that was absolutely wonderful. While there, I also had a chance to visit, just ever so shortly, with some friends like Lee Heine, Liz Vanowski, Gary and Ginger Reuter, and our honey princess, Danielle Dale. I learned that Lee had recently retired from Dadant and there had been a retirement party (and no, I hadn't been invited). Well, I guess we will just have to have another retirement celebration for him in Hershey in January!

The great thing about beekeeping is that there are so many wonderful people in it and some of those friends of Lee's came from across the country to share some time with him and celebrate. We have a few party pictures that Ginger Reuter provided for us. I hope you enjoy them and many thanks to Ginger for sharing. We also have a wonderful report from Anna Kettlewell on the activity of our Honey Queen and Princess and their travels around the country this summer. I know they have been so busy doing a wonderful job of promoting our industry again. These young ladies don't shut down in the heat!

This month we also have a legislative update from George Hansen, ABF president, who has been busy traveling to Washington, D.C., to keep those people aware of the industry's problems and needs.  He has sacrificed much of his personal time to represent us and our interests. We also have another great recipe and a new riddle of the month in "Bee Thinking," so I hope that you find your time here well spent. As always, if you have anything you would like to put into the ABF E-Buzz, just drop me a note at tuckerb@hit.net and we will get it in the next issue. Until then, stay cool!

The Buzz on the Hill: ABF July Legislative Update

by George Hansen, ABF President

Registration for Amitraz Product for U.S. Beekeepers. EPA is methodically working through issues of potential: 1. residues in honey; 2. risk assessment of aggregate Amitraz use in the United States; and 3. possibility of registering for non-food use (no tolerance needed). Progress is being made in all areas, but no breakthrough is imminent. Beekeepers should be making alternate plans for fall treatments this year. It is unlikely Apivar strips will be approved, let alone distributed for sale in time for use in the next 60 days.

H2A Guest Worker Program. The Department of Labor (DOL) will not back down from their determination that beekeepers using the H2A Program must adhere to the MISPA rules for labor contractors. Efforts to legislate a mandatory wiaver are underway, but those are extremely unlikely to be successful in this political climate, at least not right away. Beekeepers using this program are encouraged to participate in beekeeper groups going through the MISPA regulations to identify any new requirements under this regulation. Another meeting between the industry and the DOL is scheduled for August.

Establishing Forage for Honey Bees as a Natural Resources Priority for the USDA. After my visits this last week, I am confident that there will be efforts to include our language in the Farm Bill directing NRCS to work toward implementation of this goal in all the land projects, especially CRP, which it oversees. Our attempts to meet directly with the appropriate people at USDA were thwarted by schedule conflicts. Plans for further discussions are in place.

Reported Out of the Senate Finance Committee: Enforcing Orders and Reducing Customs Evasion Act of 2011. This bill, if enacted, would strengthen Customs' efforts to crack down on circumvention and other trade fraud. As this moves to the Senate floor for a vote, beekeepers will be asked to contact their senators for support. There is no action anticipated in the House at this time.

Weslaco Lab Closure. ARS is still planning on closing the honey bee lab at Weslaco. A congressional letter to ARS asking for justification was responded to on July 18, 2012, by USDA. Congress now has 30 days from that day to intercede, or the planned closure will proceed.

Final Thoughts. There is a credible possibility that there will be a 2008 Farm Bill extension to enable disaster relief due to the drought. The extension will likely be coupled with a mechanism to get the new Farm Bill into conference and passed before the election. Stay tuned!

Bee Informed: Register Today for ABF's Conversation with a Beekeeper Webinar Beekeeping 101: To Be or Not to Be a Bee

Tuesday, August 14, 2012
8:00 p.m. ET / 7:00 p.m. CT / 6:00 p.m. MT / 5:00 p.m. PT / 4:00 p.m. AKST / 3:00 p.m. HST
Dr. Roger Hoopingarner, professor emeritus, Michigan State University

The ABF Education Committee has been hard at work developing new ways to keep its members engaged and informed in between ABF annual conferences each year. To this end, the ABF is pleased to announce a special nine-part series within the "Conversation with a Beekeeper" Webinar series. This series will be titled "Beekeeping 101" and will feature Dr. Roger Hoopingarner, professor emeritus at Michigan State University. Whether you are brand new to the world of beekeeping or you just need to have a refresher course, this "Beekeeping 101" series will be a great educational experience with many topics focused on the biology and management of honey bees.

The first session within this series is titled "To Be or Not to Be a Bee" and it will be held on Tuesday, August 14, 2012, at 8:00 p.m. ET. More details on Dr. Hoopingarner's presentation can be found below.

There will be nine sessions within the "Beekeeping 101" series. Other topics will include: fall hive management, winter biology, flight dynamics, population growth and pollination. Most sessions will take place on the second Tuesday of each month at 8:00 p.m. ET. Be sure to keep an eye on future issues of ABF E-Buzz, as well as the ABF website at www.abfnet.org, for more information and registration details for each session.


Dr. Roger Hoopingarner

Join us as we learn more about the structures and modifications of the basic insect body form that make the honey bee unique and able to function.

Dr. Roger Hoopingarner got his start in beekeeping as a boy scout 65 years ago. With that interest he went on to receive his B.S. degree from Michigan State University in Entomology and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His doctoral research was on the genetics and environmental factors in queen rearing. 

After a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Wisconsin, he joined the faculty at Michigan State University's Entomology Department where he remained doing research, teaching and extension in insect physiology and apiculture for 38 years.  His research interests involved fruit pollination, disease transmission, population dynamics and insecticide interactions with insects and animals.


The sessions will be conducted via the GoToWebinar online meetings platform, which means the presenter will have a visual presentation, as well as an audio presentation. Upon entering the session online, you may choose whether to listen to the presentation through your computer's speakers or through your phone.

Reserve your spot today by e-mailing Grayson Daniels, ABF membership coordinator, at graysondaniels@abfnet.org or by calling the ABF offices at 404.760.2875. Registration will close 48 business hours before the scheduled session. Twenty-four hours before the session the registered participant will receive an e-mail confirming participation, along with the necessary information to join the session. If an e-mail address is not provided, the ABF will call the participant with the information. Questions for the speaker must be submitted 48 business hours in advance to Grayson Daniels.

If you are unable to make the session, don't fear! Each session will be recorded and available on the ABF Web site for member-only access.

THE "BEEKEEPING 101" SERIES IS SPONSORED BY: Nozevit A Member of the CompleteBee.com Family

Nozevit is an all-natural plant polyphenol honey bee food supplement that is added to sugar syrup feed. Nozevit is produced from certified organic substances according to a decades old traditional European recipe. Healthy bee colonies build brood faster in the spring, and will winter extremely well when their intestinal integrity is intact. Exceptional colonies can be built using all-natural Nozevit as a food supplement for intestinal cleansing, thereby reducing the need of chemical treatments for internal ailments.

Science Buzz: ABF Call for Research Project Proposals

by Peter Teal, Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology, USDA-ARS

For the past several years there has been a "semi-formal" meeting of the ABF Research Committee at the ABF annual conference to discuss ways in which we could promote and improve communication of research discoveries to the membership at large.  This led to the development of the monthly "Science Buzz" column, which we hope has been useful in letting you know what is new.  However, we all realized that we should be doing more to get new ideas on bee management to the membership and in fostering research by members. Why let the scientists have all the fun when beekeepers are always trying new things?

At the ABF annual meeting last January, ABF Board member Joe Carson took our committee to a new level.  Under his leadership, the ABF Research Committee has taken great steps to promote communication of research to the membership.  We now have monthly teleconferences and, through Joe's efforts, have formally established a new research program aimed at supporting research conducted by beekeepers.  This program was initiated because all of us realize that beekeepers are doing their own research all of the time, although we sometimes think of it as just tinkering or tweaking things to improve bee management.  The new research program is aimed at providing some support to beekeepers to conduct studies on their ideas to improve bee management in replicated studies using test and control groups so that results can be compared and presented to the ABF members as a whole.

This is really exciting because you can apply for funds to prove that your ideas work and present your findings at the ABF annual conference so others can use them!  We will also be presenting the results in the monthly "Science Buzz" column.  In short, we all have tricks we think are great now let's prove they're great and get the word out to our friends.

Click here to learn how you can submit a research proposal to the ABF Research Committee (PDF file).  I, personally, have great hopes for the program and will be more than happy to provide answers to questions or send your questions on to someone better qualified to answer them.  Please put your ideas together and let's improve bee management! Feel free to contact me at peter.teal@ars.usda.gov with any questions or comments. Have a great August!

Bee There: Registration Now Open for the 2013 ABF Annual Conference

Join us, January 8-12, 2013, at the Hershey Lodge® in Hershey, Pennsylvania, for what promises to be a "sweet" time.  We are very excited about the 2013 North American Beekeeping Conference & Tradeshow and can't wait to share the details with you.  We've taken all of your survey comments under consideration and continue to plan the 2013 conference based on your needs. Here's just a snapshot of what you can expect to see at the conference:

  • Two and half days of general sessions complete with presentations on the latest developments in beekeeping
  • Large exhibit hall with great vendors featuring outstanding products and services
  • The 2013 American Honey Show
  • The 2013 Honey Queen and Princess coronation
  • The ever-popular Serious Sideliner Symposium with a focus on "How I Do It"
  • The American Bee Research Conference
  • A variety of specialized hands-on workshops
  • Opportunity to visit a working bee farm (or two)
  • A few "sweet" treats
  • And much, much more...

Register now on the conference website, and while you're there be sure to discover the latest conference updates, conference schedule and information on hotel accommodations.  There's a lot to see and do in Hershey, so plan to bring the family and join us for a spectacular start to 2013!

Bee Educated: Learn How to Grow Your Knowledge and Understanding of Bees and Beekeeping

by Robin Lane, ABF Executive Director


The American Beekeeping Federation (ABF) is pleased to announce a new online educational program available at a discounted rate for all ABF members the Beekeeper Education & Engagement System (BEES).  Under the direction of Dr. David Tarpy, associate professor and extension apiculturist, Department of Entomology, North Carolina State University, the BEES network is an online resource for beekeepers at all levels.

The system is Internet based and promotes an online learning community among beekeepers.  The structure of the BEES network is broken into three levels of complexity (Beginner, Advanced and Ambassador) and three areas of content (honey bee biology, honey bee management and the honey bee industry). New courses and content areas are also in development and will be introduced soon. More information can be found at http://entomology.ncsu.edu/apiculture/BEES.html.

Through the end of the year, ABF members will be given the opportunity to participate in the program at a 20-percent discount (click here for coupon; coupon must be presented at time of registration). Dr. Tarpy also recently conducted an "ABF Conversation with a Beekeeper" webinar, where he introduced, in detail, the BEES Program. Click here to access the session.  Log on and learn more about this outstanding educational program today!

The Buzz on ABF Membership

by Grayson Daniels, ABF Membership Coordinator

Here at the ABF, we believe our members are the bees' knees.  After all, you are the reason the ABF exists. We are here to serve you and help keep you engaged in the beekeeping industry. We are here to answer questions, offer educational programs, provide a legislative voice in Washington, D.C., and host an annual conference where you can be encouraged and informed by fellow beekeepers.
Beekeeping is becoming increasingly more popular in the United States and we want to take advantage of this in order to help our organization grow. There is strength in numbers and we believe that the more members we have, the better the ABF will be. The only way to do this is with your help. We want more people like you, but we need you to help us find them!

You're probably asking yourself how you can help, right? Here are several ways:

  • We encourage you to wear your ABF membership pin at your local and state meetings.
  • Request that an informational package be sent to you for your next meeting. We will provide everything you need to help promote the ABF.
  • "Like" us on Facebook and share our page on your wall.
  • Tell your friends and family about all the wonderful benefits that membership with the ABF has to offer.
  • Renew your membership before it expires to ensure that you do not lose any of our valuable benefits.
  • Register for the 2013 North American Beekeeping Conference & Tradeshow and encourage a friend or family member to come with you.

We all want the ABF to grow, but we can only do it with your help! Please feel free to call us at 404.760.2875 or send us an e-mail at info@abfnet.org if we can assist you in your membership recruitment efforts.

Beekeeper of the Month: Lee Heine

by Tim Tucker, ABF Vice President and ABF E-Buzz Editor

Lee and Nadene Heine

One of the wonderful people who attends our annual ABF meetings is a fellow by the name of Lee Heine.  I have spent a few evenings, after conference hours, enjoying some truly memorable moments with Lee and his friends. One night was in Orlando when we gathered for a late dinner and drinks...the story telling went on into the late night hours long after the time that I had to turn in. I don't know when I have laughed so hard or had such a good time at a conference.  Lee is always someone you look forward to seeing at our meetings or state meetings around the country. Thanks to Lee's wife, Nadene, we have a good history of Lee's career in the industry.

In 1977 Lee began work as credit manager for Dadant's corporate headquarters in Hamilton, Illinois. Since 1984, he has been Watertown Dadant's branch manager, where he has met many wonderful people. Included in those people are several mentors who always offer/offered encouragement, knowledge and  support. Those very special people are Liz and John Vaenoski, Derald and Loretta Hanson, Kemp and Doris Bush, and Ruth and Mel Berholz.
Lee became involved in state and national beekeeping organizations and held these offices: Wisconsin Honey Producers Association (WHPA), vice president, 1992-1996; WHPA, president, 1996-2000.  Lee was appointed by Secretary of Agriculture to National Honey Board in 2000 and elected to its executive committee at this first meeting. He was reappointed in 2004 and elected chairman of the National Honey Board for three consecutive years. One of only 12 to ever serve as chairman.  The Honey Board helps market honey and they say it takes about five years for the work to pay off. Anyone notice the price of honey lately?

While working at Dadant's, Lee attended almost all state and national beekeeping conventions. When returning to work, the phone would be ringing with beekeepers wanting information about the conferences. With the contacts he has made, beekeepers across the country look to him for information on many issues, people and problems.

Lee has always volunteered his time to work the WHPA honey booth at the Wisconsin State Fair. He has been a big supporter of the state and national honey queen programs by purchasing quilts at the auction of both the state and national conferences. In his home state of Iowa, his donation of bees to the youth in beekeeping has made it a program they continue to offer and all youth who began continue to keep bees.

Friends and family gather to wish Lee
all the best in his retirement!

Getting bees from California started when a producer in Florida on a Sunday night canceled his annual package order of 500, which was to be in Wisconsin that Tuesday. Lee called longtime friends in California beekeeping circles, Wayne Harrison and Lee Little, who were willing to make a truck work if they could find the bees. They called Yvonne Koehnen at Koehnen & Sons and explained Lee's situation. They called back in two hours and said they would get 600 packages ready to leave in two days. Lee still does business with the Koehnens and Wayne Harrison still hauls for Lee. Lee is the largest distributor of package bees in the United States and attributes that to his relationship with his producers: Kevin Ward; the Koehnens; Bob Brandi; and Kona Queen. He always says he has the best in the nation.

Lee's retirement party was held June 30, 2012, in Richland Center, hosted (and organized) by the Southwest District of the Wisconsin Honey Producers. It was a total surprise for Lee and he was thrilled! About 75 people came, including friends from California, Idaho and Illinois. There was a dinner with grilled brats (of course!), plenty of beer, and a DJ and dance afterwards.

When asked recently what he is the most proud of in his 35 years in the industry he said:

  • Friends in beekeeping nationwide. Three special areas are his large out-of-state commercial friends, the queen breeders and the beekeepers in the SW District of Wisconsin.
  • Being on the National Honey Board and serving as chairman for three years.
  • While being WHPA president having the most members in decades.
  • Starting the new beekeeping workshop in Kenosha before beekeeping became popular and over 900 have attended.

We hope to see Lee in Hershey in January and I know that he will continue to be one of beekeeping's biggest supporters.   Thanks, Lee, for your passion for the work!

Honey Queen Buzz: Coast to Coast!

by Anna Kettlewell, American Honey Queen Program Chair

Queen Alyssa shares her knowledge at the observation hive in the Insect Pavilion at the California State Fair.

Fair season is officially upon us, and Alyssa and Danielle are in full-swing travel mode for the next few months visiting fairs from coast to coast.

Danielle truly did travel from coast to coast this month, starting her month in California at the Alameda County Fair near Oakland, continuing with a local fair in California, and finishing her month at the Warren County Fair in New Jersey.  Alyssa filled her month with a visit to the California State Fair and the Ohio State Fair.  In addition to working at these fairs, opportunities to promote beyond the fair were prevalent.  In California, Danielle gave presentations to a local Rotary club and a city council, and Alyssa promoted at local farm events.  Think beyond your fair booth when setting up a fair visit for the Honey Queen or Princess.  It may be beneficial to your honey-sales booth to have the Queen give presentations at local events outside the fair or participate in events outside your booth, such as at award banquets at the fair or at the opening ceremonies.  At these venues, the Queen and Princess can direct attendees and potential attendees to your exhibit and events!

Princess Danielle uses an educational hive to talk to attendees at the Alameda County Fair about beekeeping.

Summer beekeeping meetings were also on the docket for Alyssa and Danielle.  Alyssa visited St. Louis, Missouri, for the annual Heartland Apicultural Society conference, while Danielle spoke at the Wisconsin Honey Producers Association's summer meeting.  At both conferences, they spoke about the value of ABF membership and about their roles as Queen and Princess.  Consider inviting the Honey Queen or Princess to your beekeeping meeting.  In addition to discussing their travels and promotions, they can give presentations on how to develop educational programs, how they approach presentations and tips for effective promotions.  Given their extensive travels, they have much to share about what works well in different areas of the country.  You may stumble across some fantastic ideas to implement at your fair or festival!

Please keep up with Alyssa and Danielle's travels through their Facebook page and their blog this summer.  "Like" their Facebook page and show your support as they enter a period of virtually nonstop travel through October!  Please contact me (414.545.5514 or honeyqueen99@hotmail.com) if you are interested in hosting Alyssa and Danielle for November and December promotions. Happy promoting!

Bee Updated: Latest and Greatest News from the National Honey Board

The Sweet 16 Honey Recipe Challenge A National Honey Board Foodservice Promotion

The National Honey Board (NHB) has partnered with the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) to coordinate the first-ever "Sweet 16 Honey Recipe Challenge."  The challenge is designed to educate and inspire future chefs about honey's versatility in the kitchen. The NHB also held a honey varietal tasting at each of the three CIA campuses to showcase the different flavor profiles and spark some imagination with the students. The recipe contest was open to all enrolled students at CIA's Greystone, Hyde Park and San Antonio Campuses.  With the grand prize of a $5,000 CIA scholarship, the stakes are high.
Recipes poured in from all three campuses and the students did not disappoint. Each recipe was unique and showcased honey throughout.  The students seemed to enjoy using honey in their creations and came up with many mouth-watering recipes.

The Sweet 16 semifinalists were selected in early July.  These will be narrowed down to four finalists who will compete in a "Final Four Cook-off" August 20, 2012, at CIA Greystone in Napa Valley.  Information on the contest winners and their recipes will be available soon on the Honey Board's website at www.honey.com.

National Honey Board Announces Availability of 2012 National Honey Month Press Kits

The National Honey Board (NHB) is pleased to announce that they will be providing 2012 press kits to industry members to help promote September as National Honey Month. September has been recognized as National Honey Month for more than 20 years.  The press kit, intended for delivery to local media, will be available at no cost to beekeepers throughout the United States.

The press kit features information on honey's benefits, recipes, and a CD with several high resolution images that will be perfect for use by editors and journalists preparing honey features and news stories.

The press kits will be available in mid-August and may be requested by calling Andrea Brening at the NHB office (800.553.7162) or by sending an e-mail to Andrea@nhb.org.

Buzzworthy: Discovering Honey Acres

by Tim Tucker, ABF Vice President and ABF E-Buzz Editor

Quite a few years ago we had a speaker come to our Kansas Honey Producers meeting by the name of Walter "Bud" Diehnelt. He was likely in his seventies then and I was amazed by his love for honey and the honey bee. He handed out samples of some honey mints and described the process of how they were made and distributed by Honey Acres. I always thought that I would like to go there and visit one day and I had the chance this month while in Wisconsin.

Honey Acres is located in Ashippun, Wisconsin, just north of Milwaukee. They have a great museum filled with information that the Diehnelt family has put together and preserved for all who visit to see. It was a fun trip and Eugene, who is Bud's nephew, showed Derald Kettlewell and me the plant and how they are working now on primarily the one product, honey mints. They have several commercial customers that they make tons of mints for each month.  Eugene said they were running two shifts and were having a difficult time keeping up with meeting the demand for the mints.

It's always great to hear family stories and history from beekeepers who are third- or fourth-generation keepers of the bees. I was saddened to hear that Bud had passed away last year.  The following is a brief history of the Diehnelt family with some pictures of the museum and some honey facts provided by Honey Acres.

In 1852, Christian Friederich Diehnelt brought this skill, knowledge and love for beekeeping from Rosswein, Germany, to the meadowlands of Wisconsin. The new location, abundant with fresh clover and wildflowers during the summer months, inspired Christian to begin an apiary. As his business grew, he shared his talents with his son, August, who learned that making the best honey required hard work, special care and patience. Together C.F. and August soon became masters of the beekeeping business. The quality that C.F. Diehnelt demanded over a century ago still inspires Honey Acres today. Through five generations of producing the finest honey, they now distribute gift packs around the world.  Here are some interesting facts about bees and honey from Honey Acres Museum:

Honey Bee:

  • Bees fly an average of 13-15 miles per hour.
  • A bee's wings beat 180 times per second.
  • During the production period, or spring and summer, a worker bee's average life span is six weeks.
  • Worker bees are all female.
  • Honey bees visit approximately 2 million flowers to make one pound of honey.
  • A bee travels an average of 1,600 round trips in order to produce one ounce of honey - as far as six miles per round trip.
  • To produce two pounds of honey, bees travel a distance equal to four times around the earth.
  • Bees from the same hive visit approximately 225,000 flowers per day - one bee usually visits between 50 and 1,000 flowers per day, but sometimes up to several thousand.
  • Approximately eight pounds of honey is consumed by bees to produce one pound of beeswax.
  • Queens will lay approximately 1,200 eggs per day at a rate of five or six per minute - between 175,000 and 200,000 eggs are laid per year.
  • The queen may mate with up to 17 drones over a one- to two-day period of mating flights.
  • The queen stores the sperm from her mating voyage, giving her a lifetime supply. She mates only once in her lifetime.


  • Bees do not sleep; however, they can be found resting in empty cells.
  • There are 40,000 to 60,000 bees in a beehive during honey gathering season.
  • The average temperature of a hive is 93.5 degrees.
  • Famous actor Henry Fonda kept beehives.


  • Honey is 80 percent sugars and 20 percent water.
  • Honey has been used as a topical dressing for wounds because microbes cannot live in it. It also produces hydrogen peroxide.
  • Honey has been used to embalm bodies, including that of Alexander the Great.
  • Fermented honey, known as mead, is the most ancient fermented beverage.
  • The term "honey moon" originated with the Norse practice of consuming large quantities of mead during the first month of a marriage.
  • Honey bees are the only insects that produce food for humans.

Bee Thinking

Last month's riddle master was ABF member Chappie McChesney again. He is really fast at getting these riddles answered!  Below is the answer:

Riddle: There are three switches downstairs. Each corresponds to one of the three light bulbs in the attic. You can turn the switches on and off and leave them in any position. How would you identify which switch corresponds to which light bulb, if you are only allowed one trip upstairs?

Answer: You turn on one of the switches for about a minute, then turn it off and turn on one of the remaining two switches. You then go upstairs to see what light is on. You feel the other two light bulbs noting which one is hot and relates to the first switch you activated.

So, here's another riddle to keep your brain working during August. Think you know the answer?  The first to e-mail Tim Tucker at tuckerb@hit.net will lay claim to another fun ABF prize.

A man who lives on the tenth floor takes the elevator down to the first floor every morning and goes to work. In the evening, when he comes back, on a rainy day, or if there are other people in the elevator, he goes to his floor directly. Otherwise, he goes to the seventh floor and walks up three flights of stairs to his apartment. Can you explain why?

Buzzmakers: Latest and Greatest Beekeeping Industry News

ABF Welcomes New Members — June 2012

  • Mary E. Cahill-Roberts, Georgia
  • Phil Gaven, Maine
  • Jason James Ircink, Wisconsin
  • Amy McMahon Laswell, Indiana
  • Charlie Nack, Illinois
  • Robert Niessner, California
  • Pam Schaudt, Michigan

Recipe of the Month: Arugula Salad with Honey-Herb Dressing

From the National Honey Board


  • 4 cups arugula leaves
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, sliced
  • Croutons or toasted bread slices
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried coriander
  • Salt (to taste)







In a large salad bowl, combine salad ingredients, cover and refrigerate. Combine all the ingredients of the dressing in a jar, close jar and shake until well blended. Sprinkle salad with parmesan, pour dressing over and toss lightly. Makes four servings.

Bee-friend the Honey Bee: Support the ABF "Friends of the Bee" Fund

Looking for the perfect way to honor a friend or family member while helping to protect and preserve one of nature's finest?  Why not make a donation in his or her name to the Friends of the Bee fund?

The honey bee today faces its largest challenge in its long history — its continued survival. Factors fighting against the honey bee include:

  • Parasitic varroa mites that not only affect colony numbers, but vector over a dozen viruses that affect honey bee health.
  • Continued loss of habitat due to urban expansion and the even larger problem of monocultural practices of modern agriculture.
  • Challenging weather extremes that can affect honey bee health due to drought and floral degradation.
  • Increased use of pesticides affecting all beneficial insects.

With your generous donation you can help protect the honey bee habitat, aid in the fight against Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), encourage government-sponsored research, assist in the battle against adulterated honey in the marketplace and help ensure the continued role of the honey bee in pollinating 1/3 of our food supply.

Support the world's most beneficial insect and become a friend of the bee with your donation of $25, $50 or $100. Donate today and receive a stylish Friends of the Bee bumper sticker…and help us tip the balance back in favor of the honey bee.  Click here to download the donation form or contact the ABF at 404.760.2875 for assistance.