The Low Technology Institute is expanding its focus on honeybee research. In the next months, you’ll see blog posts describing the on-going and upcoming projects we are carrying out. Subscribe to our blog below to make sure you never miss a post. Varroa-Mite Tolerant Bee Breeding We’re selectively breeding isolated bee colonies in order to … More We’re Expanding our Bee Research. Join us!
In the last report, we found that the institute bees survived the “polar vortex” -30°F (plus windchill) temperatures but the research hives, which were split heavily and smaller in size, did not. It is now reaching flying temperatures most days (>50°F) and the bees in all four institute hives have been out. Institute Hives … More Bee Report — Early Spring is Here
After the polar vortex visited us with -30°F temperatures, we warmed up to the mid 40ºFs, and I took the opportunity to check on our bees. At this time of year, the bees are not hibernating, as many people think. They form a cluster around the center of the hive and shiver themselves together to … More Bee Report — Midwinter Check
The bees are preparing for winter. Last week I went into the hives to consolidate winter stores and check on the health of the colonies. We have four hives on the institute property and four hives around the village as part of our mite-tolerant breeding program. The four hives on the institute property were split … More Bee Report — Tucking the Bees in for Winter
Things are going well for the bees. The institute currently has four hives as part of its mite-tolerant breeding program. To increase the number of hives going into the winter, about a month ago, I split our two original hives into four: I pulled the queen, two frames of brood, and two frames of honey, … More Bee Report — Study Hive Splits and Bee Vacuum
The Low Technology Institute is running a breeding program to establish varroa-tolerant colonies in a semi-isolated area. The essence of the process is to split hives aggressively to have as many reasonably strong colonies as possible going into winter and then heavily splitting those that survive. Without treatment, colonies with poor tolerance will succumb to … More Field Day: Varroa-Tolerant Bee Breeding Program, Sept. 22, 3–5 p.m., Free
Last month I split out my hives and used on-the-spot queen rearing to raise new queens for three young colonies (read about this process in Part I and Part II). It takes about 23–30 days for a queen to grow from an egg (3 days) to larva (5 1/2 days) to pupa in capped brood … More Bee Report — Update on Splits
The institute is hosting a potential study on rearing mite-tolerant drone colonies. Funding requests are currently under review. Title: Varroa destructor–Tolerant Honey Bee Drone Breeding Project Project Leader: Dr. Scott A. J. Johnson, Director, Low Technology Institute Project Partners: University of Wisconsin Extension–Milwaukee and local beekeepers Anticipated Dates of Project: Funding requested for April–December 2018; … More Research Project No. 3 — Mite-Tolerant Drone Colony Breeding