THIS PAGE IS UNDER RE-CONSTRUCTION & THE FULLY UPDATED VERSION WILL APPEAR BY THE END OF SUMMER 2017. THANKS FOR YOUR PATIENCE! Meanwhile, you can find "Bees in the News" in each monthly Newsletter - click on the "Newsletters" link, above.
On this page, we summarize honey bee news & research. Below are recent news stories from our current newsletter. At the end of each month, stories are archived in the topic pages listed on our banner, above: neonicotinoids & pesticide news, Varroa & other parasites, Nosema & other disorders, bee losses, bee behavior, & our "odd news" page, which tells some interesting tales. . . .
For more bee news, visit LCBA on Facebook:
Another great source: Glenn Apiaries’ comprehensive Bee News page: articles spanning a wide range of bee-related topics, all with clickable links, are archived here. Complete URL: http://www.glenn apiaries.com/honey_bee_beekeeping_news.html.
“Honey Flavor Wheel: Do You Know How to Describe the Flavor?” 4 Aug 2014, American Bee Journal
U.C. Davis has unveiled its Honey and Pollinator Center's Honey Flavor Wheel. Amina Harris, the Center’s director, “brought together a group of 20 people--trained tasters, beekeepers and food enthusiasts--who worked together with a sensory scientist to come up with almost 100 descriptors,” Harris said. “This wheel will prove invaluable to those who love honey and want to celebrate its nuances.”
As ABJ’s description puts it: “The front of the colorful wheel shows the descriptors, including fruity, floral, herbaceous, woody, spicy, nutty, confectionary, caramel and earthy. No longer can you just say “sweet” when you taste honey or “sour, salty and bitter.” If it's fruity, can you determine if it's berry, citrus, dried fruit, tree fruit or tropical fruit? If it falls into the confectionary category, can you pinpoint marshmallow, vanilla, maple, butterscotch, toffee, molasses, cotton candy, crème brûlée, burnt sugar or brown sugar? There's even an “animal” category” where you can opine that your sample of honey reminds you of a barnyard. Retired Extension apiculturist Eric Mussen of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, who has coordinated and conducted the annual honey tasting at the UC Davis Picnic Day for 38 years, remembers tasting buckwheat honey in Oregon that reminded him of ‘goat.’”
Hopefully those of us who enter honey at the Southwest Washington Fair won’t remind our tasters of goat – and the wheel may help us categorize what we taste. To read more and see the original wheel, visit: http://us1.campaign-archive1.com/?u=5fd2b1aa990e63193af2a573d&id=9a4045fee7&e=e9ff21e0bb.
“Congressional house bill 4790 has been referred to the House Transportation and Infrastructure committee for consideration” – from Franclyn Heinecke, WSBA Area 2 Representative
This bill would “encourage and facilitate efforts by States and other transportation rights-of-way managers to adopt integrated vegetation management practices, including enhancing plantings of native forbs and grasses that provide habitats and forage for Monarch butterflies and other native pollinators and honey bees, and for other purposes.” Projections show a small chance that HR 4790 will pass, but “if beekeepers are vocal about the crucial need for more pollinator-friendly forage, we can change that outcome.” To read the full text of the bill, visit: https://beta.congress.gov/bill/113th-congress/house-bill/4790/text. To read Franclyn’s Master Beekeeper paper on weeds and bee nutrition, visit: http://wasba.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/Why-honeybees-need-weeds.pdf. Franclyn will be LCBA's August 13, 2014 monthly meeting speaker.
Honey bees need water, too: above, one of the webmistress's bees slaking her thirst; below, coming in for a landing (photos by webmistress, Susanne Weil)