Conservation of Stingless bees
When you think about conservation in our society it is almost absent. This is something that when you think about is very concerning to me. No native culture threw away the idea of conservation, in fact each culture used to have a way to preserve what they had. When I thought about why we had thrown it away the answer came easy – we don’t have too! When the food is easy at a convenient tap of a card why would we?? My hope is this year everyone can try in their own way to do one thing to conserve what we have.
When Flavio from Sos Abelhas Sem Ferrao asked if I could write an article on conservation, I thought to myself, “What a great idea!”
I wanted to make a way that everyone who has a few native bee hives could give back to nature. Naturally the first idea was “If people are taking their homes out of the forest why not put them back in?”
Here is a video that will show you how you can do this at home.
Conservation log hives
When picking a log to use for this purpose you want to make sure it’s going to last many years. Solid old logs that have lasted the test of time are the best. Coating the inside of the log with wax is a very important step when providing a safe home for your bees to start off in. If you do not have any wax, try using anything you can that is non-toxic to seal the log for them. This will prevent them from wasting time in setting up defense against pests.
Once your log is sealed an entrance hole can be drilled and wax placed around it on the inside (if you have some). A really good chunk of brood with bees on it is then added. This should be done in spring to ensure your log hive becomes successful. A year later it’s time to kiss your creation away and place it somewhere secret in the forest to help future colonies grow.
To give everyone an idea, I have a log colony that has sent out 6 colonizing swarms just this year! This is a lot but even if your hive sends out one the world is a better place.
I hope this helps everyone who wants to give a little back and if anyone has a great idea of how we can practice conservation with our stingless bees drop a comment below.
I will leave you with this.
One of my favorite pieces of writing was Chief Seattle’s letter. If you have never read this piece of writing it is both a good reminder and motivator for the topic of conservation.