BEST To Host “Keep Bermuda Buzzing” Bee Fair

March 19, 2014

The BEST environmental group will host a Bee Fair entitled “Keep Bermuda Buzzing”  on Saturday 12th April, 2014 from 11am to 3:45pm at the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute [BUEI].

The event will include a short film and panel discussion from 2:30pm to 3:30pm, featuring Claire Jessey, Entomologist, Department of Environmental Protection; Tommy Sinclair, Bee Keeper; Carlos Amaral, Farmer and Thad Murdoch, Scientist

The event will also include stalls displaying bee keeping techniques and equipment, bee-friendly plants and products, school projects, merchandise and more

BEE-FAIR 2014

According to the promo flyer it is estimated that since 2008 our bee hives have decreased by 65%.

An edition of the Envirotalk newsletter last year said, “Bermuda’s bee population has had a rough few years and recently experienced another massive die off, the start of which occurred in the fall of 2012.

“Since this time the Department has been concerned about the rise in symptoms that often indicate a Nosema infection [crawling on the ground, lethargic, lack of honey collection] and the occurrence of a colony with numerous bees displaying the characteristics of Deformed Wing Virus.

“Beekeepers have reported losses of up to 70% of their colonies during this time and inspections of several bee yards [apiaries] confirmed the substantial losses. During these inspections, several surviving colonies exhibited Nosema symptoms and the presence of Nosema was suspected.

“Nosema infections are caused by a microsporidian gut parasite called Nosema ceranae, that is easily transmitted from bee to bee. Low levels of this parasite can be tolerated by the bees, but high levels can stress a bee colony, often to the point of collapse. Samples were taken and tests confirmed that the colonies had levels of Nosema high enough to cause concern.”

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