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FIG. 4.-Common bees of the northern States. I. Halictus craterus; a, female; b, male. 2. H. lerouxii; a, female: b, male.
3. Coelioxys rufitarsis, female. 4. Osmia megacephala, female. 5. Halictus hortensis, female. 6 H. vierecki, female, 7. Osmia pumila, female. 8. Andrena vicina; a, female; b, male, 9. A. cratægi; a, female; b, female, 10. Prosopis modesta; a, female; b, male.
of n 3, ce
3 y e
ing it with food. The largest of all bees are the carpenter bees (Fig. 3), socalled because they are able with their powerful jaws to: excavate tunnels in solid wood a foot in length. The cells are separated by partitions of small chips cemented together in a spiral; while the masses of bee-bread, or balls of pollen mixed with nectar on which the eggs are laid are about the size of a bean. In the eastern States Xylocopa virginica, a black bee about the size of X. caffra (Fig. 3, 1), is a well known species.
In Fig. 3 are shown three kinds of leaf-cutting bees. They carry pollen chiefly on a stiff brush of hairs on the underside of the abdomen, which in different species is black, yellow, or glistening white. On level-topped flowers, like the sunflower, they are able to suck nectar and brush up pollen at the same time. They are also especially well adapted to pollinate the flowers of the pea orlegume family (Leguminosa).
The species of Megachile are called leaf-cutting bees because they line
their burrows with oblong or round pieces of leaves or flower petals, which they cut out with their mandibles. Usually they do little harm to the foliage of plants, but occasionally the injury is more serious. A settler at Springfield, Idaho, relates the following experience:
Among the first trees set out about our house were two ash trees. As soon as the foliage began to appear the trees were attacked by leaf-cutter bees, which completely defoliated one and nearly the other. First, we noticed circular holes in many of the leaves, but it was not long, until going to the trees, one noticed the noise made by the bees at work, almost like a swarm of bees intent on gathering honey. Sometimes we could see a bee with a section of leaf so large it could hardly Ay, but working diligently, carrying its burden to a sandy spot just outside the yard, where the bees had their tunnels.”
The mason bees belong to the genus Osmia (See Fig. 4, 4 and 7), and are closely allied to the leaf-cutters. They
are robust, blue-green or bottle-green insects, with the pollen brush on the underside of the abdomen. They are called mason bees because many of them construct their cells of mud or clay. A cell sent to me from Massachusetts, was a round ball about half an inch in diameter, rudely fashioned of mud on the outside, but beautifully polished and glazed within.
The short-tongued bees are very numerous, and may be taken by the dozen on flowers which have the nectar and pollen unprotected, as the willows, plums, wild cherries, thornbushes, blackberries and sumacs. In Fig. 4 are shown common species of the great genera Andrena and Halictus. As they build their nests in the soil of fields and pastures they are often called ground bees. Each female digs her own burrow, and, as many thousand sometimes tunnel in the same sandy bank, the ground appears as though filled with shot holes. It is a village or
city of homes.” The tunnel is straight with several short branches, in each of which a ball of bee-bread about the size of a small pea is placed, ar egg is laid upon it, the cell is sealed and the offspring are then left to take care of themselves. When it is rainy the females remain at home, and may be seen looking out of the burrows watching for fair weather. A part of the species of Andiena fly only in the spring, and others only in late summer or autumn. Many of them are found on only one kind of flower, some very common species like the willows or goldenrods, which furnish all the pollen and nectar they require.
The simplest and most primitive bees belong to the genus Prosopis (Fig. 4; 10, a and b). They are little coal-black insects with an aromatic odor, resembJing ants in general appearance. They are nearly smooth, with broad, flat, wasp-like tongues, which suggests that
Fig. 5.-Two closed bumblebee flowers. A. Şnapdragon (Antirrhinum majus). B Butter
and-eggs (Linaria vulgaris). In both species the corolla is two-lipped. Notice how
American Bee Journal
they have been derived from the keeping territory lies in narrow strips color and the name, but, all considered, wasps. It is a far cry indeed from around lakes and bays, and at certain does not the pure black bee bring more Prosopis to the honey-bee.
local points. While one can do well gold to its owner? That is an interestThe wild bees play a very important in beekeeping in Florida, it was my ing question which may bring jests part in the pollination of many plants impression that the States bordering first, then criticisms, but perhaps afterboth in nature and under cultivation. on Lake Michigan are far better ter wards compliments. For thousands of years our American ritory.
I do not propose to tire the reader flora was visited by no other bees than Florida, to the northern man, is with lengthy articles, but hope to be the wild species; for the honey-bee
great botanical garden, a wonder able to discuss the following points in was not found in the Western Conti land full of beauty, such as he had different numbers of this journal: nent at the time of its discovery, but never dreamed of because so different was introduced later by the early set from northern scenery.
It will pay
1. Replies to criticism of the Punic tlers. “The Indians," says Washington
bee. any beekeeper to make the trip, and Irving, “consider them (honey-bees) once he has seen it he will want to go
2. Its origin and habits.
Its as the harbinger of the white man, as
3. Its culture by the natives. again. I had some nice times fishing the buffalo is of the red man, and say and boating, but most of the time I
purity. Its faults. that in proportion as the bee advances
4. Transformation from the native spent among the truck farms and in
culture to modern methods. the Indian and the buffalo retire. It is the forest, trying to learn all I could said that they have about soils, plant growth, timber, fruit
5. Comparative study of the
with the Italian and others. always been the heralds of civilization, and vegetables. I was informed they
6. The future of the Punic bee as repreceding it as it advanced from the had been picking strawberries since Atlantic borders.” Christmas, and the quality was as good gards honey, beeswax and queen pro
duction. (I trust that some of the younger as the best we can produce. All the readers of this paper will begin by vegetables were of excellent quality. I making a collection of the wild bees in reveled in sweet, luscious oranges; but their locality the coming season; but I learned one thing, that everybody before doing so they should write to will have apples. I bought some in their State Experiment Station and spite of the fact that I had so many learn how to collect, pin and label other kinds of fruit. The apples suptheir specimens).
plied were from the far distant State of Walùoboro, Maine.
Washington. It would appear that
well producing apples to supply these
citrus fruits. Go where you will, the
apple is the king of all fruits. EFORE leaving for Florida, I had
We arrived back home April 1, and written Mr. Wilder to look out for
found the bees in good condition in
the cellar. a camping place for me and a few
It was on my arrival at
home that I learned of the death of F. old tin cans. as I would be only “a tin
B. Cavanagh. It gave me a sad heart. can tourist.” It was with much disappointment that I learned, on my arrival
While we did not agree as to the price
of honey, I loved him from the first at Bradentown, that Mr. Wilder had
time I saw him, and esteemed him gone to his headquarters in Georgia on account of the death of his general
highly. He was an honor to the indusforeman. I did not see him at all.
try of beekeeping, and will be missed Attached is a picture of my camp. Per
at our gatherings.
Bridgeport, Wis. haps he can tell where it is ? I had several informal visits with A. I. Root; also met Ernest when he was down. Herbert Clute, whom I knew when he
Tunis or Punic Bees ? had an apiary at Greenwood, Wis., lives at Palmetto, where he is doing well with about 300 colonies of bees. I T is a rash enterprise to fight fashion, had a nice visit with him and his good whether in ladies' hats, horses or wife. Herbert has traveled over every honey-bees. The golden bee is fashpart of the State. He says the bee ionable. That is a fact. It has the
TRANSPORTING ARABIAN HIVES OF BEES IN
BY HARRY LATHROP.
BY A. LENOEL.
The Punic bee is the common black bee. But living in a country where it has not been subject to mismating, it is purer, more resistant, and more industrious than the common bee of the continent. The following faults are mentioned against it:
She is small. She is cross. She swarms too much. She builds too little comb.
She is small, yes. That is due to the fact that the Arabs never change her combs. The cell walls are reduced at every hatching, and the development of the bee is cramped. The careful beekeeper helps increase the size of his bees by judicious renewal of the combs.
She is cross. That happens only with unskillful handling. The Arab, three-fourths naked, works with his bees without care and without accidents; the apiaries of the settlers are usually located near the door of the
American Bee Journal
was poured over them ? A cheap string is better than one made of long staple cotton, as it is easier to remove,
A thing must not be condemned without trial. These string “splints,” let me explain, are used as a temporary support. My frames are wired for permanent support. While “ actual trial may show less trouble with strings than imagined,” it may also show that it is an ideal way to support combs. I find it so. There is no gnawing away of foundation. The closest scrutiny fails to show that the comb had been artificially supported. I expect this season to try a hundred new frames with strings alone. If they fail me I shall make chunk honey out of the combs.
The careful experimenter this summer will put a frame in the hive with medium foundation, one with light, two more with wires, two with strings, and two more with both wires and strings, and keep the hive hot. But not one person in a hundred can carry an experiment to a logical conclusion. Dr. Miller can, and I can sometimes.
Buck Grove, Iowa.
BY G. C. GREINER.
soaking, then weighted at one end and She builds too little comb. If she dried. I also split bamboo, which gave upon spring management. It paves really swarms too much it is evident a hard, tough fiber not much larger the way, as
we might say, for future that she must build combs rapidly, for than a thread. This idea I got from operations. Some of the advantages the one cannot go without the other. Mr. Edison's electric light filament ex of my method, outside of heavier yield, It is easy to find fault. But I hope, in periments.
are directly due to the preparations and the last of my articles, to show her Dr. Miller is a good guesser. I do treatments our bees receive before the good points. Meanwhile, I trust the not know how much the fuzziness of honey-flows are expected. A descripreaders will peruse in an impartial the string was resented by the bees, tion of my method would not be comspirit what I will have to say further but the string was removed before the plete without a description of preparupon this important question.
foundation was fully drawn out, as I ing them for the harvest. I will, thereNabeul, Tunis.
expected it to be. However, it had sup fore, give a few stray thoughts con[Mr. Lenoel, the writer of the above,
ported the foundation until enough cerning my spring management.
comb had been built to keep it in place. To produce doubled and trebled comes to us well recommended. It is
The strings were saturated with wax. yields, your first aim must be to control a hard task to fight for an already con How could they help being when melt swarming. (This is one of the incidemned cause. We bespeak for him courteous consideration.—EDITOR.]
Tpaign depends in a great measure
Dr. Miller is not the only one whom splints have not satisfied entirely. I have yet to see the beekeeper who was satisfied with them, and I am sarcastic enough to suggest that Dr. Miller might not have been had he not invented them. I know I have clung to awkward things because I invented them; but I am a stubborn sort of a brute, to say the least. The Doctor confesses that sometimes they “make a gap of an inch or so in the foundation." With five splints, as I have strings, there would be little foundation or comb left.
Note that the splint is imbedded in
A TUNIS ARABIAN APIARY. THE HIVES ARE COVERED With GRASS AND REEDS,
Photograph of A. Lenoel.
American Bee Journal
dental advantages my method brings about.) We all know, if bees do not swarm and apply all their energy to the production of surplus honey, the yields under favorable conditions may be enormous. At the same time, if we can keep our bees busy, gathering and storing honey, not capping, they are not liable to swarm. These two features are so closely linked together that either one may be considered the cause of the other.
My apiary, after the bees are placed on the summer stands, usually consists of these three classes: Prime, medium and weak, and I believe the same is the case with every lot of bees at this time of the year. The only difference that may exist is the proportion of the three classes. With one beekeeper, who has the wintering problem at his fingers' end, the first kind may be in evidence, while with a less fortunate brother, the other end of the line may be predominating, but in either case the three kinds are there just the same.
All the colonies that are strong in bees, and have six or more combs of solid brood are classed “prime.” Any of these are liable to swarm during the latter part of May. To prevent it they are divided during apple-tree bloom (in this locality about May 10 or 12), the queenless half being provided with a laying queen. In the way of making these divisions, I have nothing new to offer. I practice the old-fashion method of taking the old queen with two combs of brood from the mother colony, place them in a new hive on the old stand, and move the former with a caged laying queen to a new stand. If the operation is properly performed it is the simplest, most convenient, and most workmanlike method of making artificial divisions. The advantages of doing it at this early period are easily explained. No other apiary work is crowding. The beekeeper has plenty of time to execute every detail with care and forethought, while a month or two later the same work would necessarily have to be slighted. The divided colonies, too, have plenty of time to recuperate. Each half has the opportunity to build up to proper working condition before the white-clover flow begins.
I have no trouble with swarming. I am relieved of all the time-wasting useless operations in the line of hunting and destroying queen-cells, clipping queens' wings, which I imagine is the cause of many queens being injured, shook swarming, in itself an unpleasant job, greatly interfering with super work, etc. All these manipulations are pulling at the wrong end of the rope. Instead of removing the cause, they are expected to prevent the effect. It is not the presence of queen-cells, but the disposition to build them, that induces swarming. Cutting them out does no more remove the desire to swarm than clipping the queens' wings. ·
At the time the divisions are made, all vacant space in the hives is taken up by chaff division-boards, dummies, fillers, or whatever they may be called. The hives that contain the old queens are reduced to five frames; one comb of honey and two empty combs being added to the two combs of brood taken from the mother colonies. The space
of the two combs taken from the latter bees very quietly and slowly, and pre-
times. Never allow your bees to be-
safety that greatly assists in quietly
Prepare a new hive with thre. divis-
ion-boards and two empty combs, leav
ing space for three combs in the cenoutside of the remaining combs. It
ter. Place it behind the cliny to be
divided. Loosen the cover of the latter
on your side very car:fully. If bees
em rge, a little smoke will drive them
back, and the cover may be replaced
for a few seconds to let the bees get
quiet again. Take off the cover in a
slow, quiet way and give it an endwise
jar on the įround, close to the hive-
it contains mostly young, uncapped
new hive also, otherwise let it take the
the third and all the following combs
mother colony should be moved to one
comb of honey. The latter to replace First, some general rules: Handle the first one taken out which generally
American Bee Journal
contains mostly honey. The cage with and all started queen-cells destroyed.
Boardman entrance feeder without startin
robbing ? the new queen should be suspended 2 For the same purpose I examine every
7. I have never introduced new queens, or 3 inches below the top-bar. A little hive daily, until the queen is accepted. but have the same ones I begun with two wire-loop with ends turned at right Occasionally it happens that I find or three years ago. Do you think I should
introduce new ones, and when ? angles to catch the top-bar will do this a queen liberated and balled on the
8, Is it necessary for frames to be wired? very conveniently. The pasteboard third day. In this case I disperse the
INDIANA. cover over the hole to the candy-supply troubling bees with a few puffs of ANSWERS.-I. On any one day when bees must be replaced by tin or a wooden smoke and re-cage her for another 24 are flying freely it is a simple matter, supplug for two days, when this protection hours, after which she is generally ac posing your hives are all alike, to lift the may be removed and the bees allowed cepted. My home-made wire cages are frames successively out of a hive that needs to liberate the queen by gnawing out more convenient for re-caging than repairing and put them into another. hive the candy. At the same time all combs the mailing cages of the trade.
that is in good order. If you have not enough of brood must be carefully examined, La Salle, N. Y.
hives in good order to accommodate all, go as far as you can, then put in order the hives you have emptied and fill them on a sncceeding day,
2. Any time is a good time to feed bees if there is any danger of starving. It is also well, even if there is no immediate danger of starving, to see that they have abundance to last until harvest and a little over, Of course, it will not do to have the frames so filled that the queen has no room to lay, but there is not much danger of that, for when brood-rearing gets well under way it is sur prising how rapidly the honey is consumed in preparing food for the babies. The very best way to feed is to give frames of sealed honey. Likely you haven't any, but now is a good time to make a mental resolve that you will have some in readiness for next spring. The best way to feed these heavy combs in early spring is to put one in each hive under the bottom-bars. This is easily done if you have bottom-boards with a space 2 inches deep. If you have no such deep bottom-board, then you must open the hive and put in the frame of honey, then use sugar syrup, half sugar and half water, feeding it in a Doolittle, Miller, Boardman or other feeder.
3. If the frames are of the right size, change the contents of one of the old hives into the new one; otherwise wait until you can put a swarm in it.
4. That will be all right if you want to increase that much and want to stand the extra expense.
5. When a colony swarms, hive the swarm and set it in place of the old hive, putting/ the old hive close beside it, both hives fac ing the same way. About eight days later move the old hive to a new stand 10 feet or so away That's all you have to do; the bees will do the rest. When the old hive is moved to a new place, the field bees that go out to forage will go just the same as if they had not been moved, but when they return from the field, instead of returning to the old hive they will return to the old place and join the swarm. The mother colony being
thus bereft of its fielders, and finding no SectIONS IN THE FOUR STAGES-PHOTOGRAPH BY G. C. GREINER.
honey coming in, will feel so discouraged that the first virgin emerging will be allowed to destroy all its rivals and there will be no further swarming.'
6. There is not much danger if you avoid spilling feed and feed in the evening after bees have stopped flying.
7. The likelihood is that you haven't a single queen that you bought two or three years ago. Bees of their own accord generally
supersede their queens every two or three Send Questions either to the
office of the American Bee Journal or direct to DR. C. C. MILLER, MARENGO, ILL.
years. So there is no need of introducing He does not answer bee-keeping questions by mail.
new queens unless for the sake of having better stock.
8. Not absolutely necessary, but better, to Transferring—Increasing — Requeening out of some of the hives I speak of that need repairing ?
have the combs strengthened by being sup1. I wish to transfer from old hives to
4. Would it be best to buy a nucleus and a ported by wires or foundation splints. good ones. When is the best time and what
queen or bees by the pound?
1 What is the best way to transfer a to know the best way to stock it with bees.
6. Would it be safe to feed now with a swarm of bees from an old box-hive which Shall I wait for a new swarm or take frames