About Rodrigo, the flowers and the bees… Beekeeping!

Filed under: Mexico Photo Album, Mexico, Yucatan Diary, Mexico, Yucatan volunteers — evs global change @ 17:57

As you already know it is Rosalba from Italy, Chloe from France and me, Katy from Austria, living and working as volunteers in the Ecotourism place Chac-lol. Since two weeks we have a new friend here, his name is Rodrigo. His motives to live in Chac-lol for the next three months have interesting background and go along with initiatives for a global change, so I decided to tell you about Rodrigo, the bees and the flowers…

Rodrigo is living in Puerto Morels, a place in the area of Quintana Roo, which is situated in the southeastern state of the peninsula Yucatan. Together with three partners he is owning a piece of land up in the jungle, for the economic project named EI AMANECIENDO, they started. This project is based on the motto: “Don t dream your life, live your dreams”. Once upon a time there had been four teenagers dreaming and talking about their own house in the jungle,  with animals, vegetables and fruits from their garden. Their ideas started to grow up and finally they are creating a wonderful place. Their aim is to create a self sustainable place, to produce organic food and honey, and the most important, everything will be worked out in an organic way. Right now all members get specialized in different areas and themes. Rodrigo says that honey is a wonderful, amazing product, beside that he believes that honey export will not be influenced by economic crises and in case of real crises you still have a product to change against others, so you will always have a possibility to survive. He decided to become a professional beekeeper, to support their project with honey production. This is the reason why Rodrigo is living in Chac-lol now, as some professional beekeepers are living close by, and he has the chance to work with them, to learn and profit from their experiences and knowledge.

I`m giving now an overview and some basics about the system of beekeeping, which I figured out on the base of an interview with our bee specialist.

Worldwide existing about 20 000 species of bees, but just a few of them are producing honey. In the region of Yucatan the African bee, the Italian or European bee, and the so called Melipona bee are living.

Bees are building colonial nests of wax for the produce and storage of honey. There is one Queen bee, a fertile female, a few thousand drone bees or fertile males and female worker bees. Rodrigo explained that details vary among different species of the honey bees, but common features of the bee produce system include:

 –       Eggs are laid singly in a wax honey comb, produced and shaped by worker bees.

–       Larvae are initially fed with royal jelly, later switching to honey and pollen.

–       Young worker bees clean the hive and feed the larvaes.

–       Worker bees cooperate to find food and use a pattern of dancing, the so called bee dance or waggle dance. This is their way to communicate. But also to control the temperature of the comb with their wings.

–       This dance varies from species to species.

–       Honey bees also perform tremble dances which recruit receiver bees to collect nectar. You learn to work with the psychology of bees, you have to get a friend and to learn not to be afraid. You learn to understand and use their natural reactions.

–       Bees are living in swarms, that means they are living in a group.

–       Honey bees sense magnetic fields and use that to navigate. Bees can trip for 100 of kilometers, and they always find their way bag to their home.

–       In the high season you can take about six liter from one comb, ten days later the box is filled up with honey again.

–       In the region of Yucatan the honey high season is from November till March. In October, before season, you have to clean and prepare boxes. April, May, June is low season, almost now honey production. You give food and start all the process again.

–       The high honey season is depending on the blossoming time.

–       In general bees are not aggressive animals.

–       A beekeeper is giving a place and food (sugar and water) to the bees. This is the reason why bees don’t leave after their honey is taken away.

–       By the way: organic honey is a medicine for eye infection.

As our worldwide EVS projects are going along with the thematic of global change I hope that this information can be interesting for you as well. To Rodrigo:  All the Best for your future carrier as a professional beekeeper.

If you want to know more about beekeeping and/or the project EI Amaneciendo don t hesitate to come in contact with Rodrigo: cope_tes@hotmail.com

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1 Comment »

  1. ..only dreamers can catch the stars..

    Comment by evs global change — 14/09/2010 @ 18:06

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