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ous examination of the subject, marked, in the manner of conducting the same, by the greatest perspicacity. The author gives his experiments with seven different species, and closes his work with the chapter summarizing his conclusions.
Early in the controversy regarding the truth of partheno-genesis, the possibility of the queen being a hermaphrodite was seriously broached, but v. Siebold demonstrated the falsity of this proposition. He has likewise discovered that some species produce males and others females; and that this is not a matter of chance, but that the Polistes, Vespa and Nemata, as well as the bee, produce only males, while the Apus, Artema and Limnadia, always produce females. The same holds true of certain species of hymenoptera. He has no doubt but that further investigation will prove it to be no isolated exception to the law of reproduction, but that it occupies a hitherto unthought-of range in creation.
To such as feel reluctant to abandon the belief in the hitherto universally accepted law or theory of reproduction, which requires, in all cases, a co-operation of sexes to produce an animate creature, he recalls the words of Aristotle, "Observation is more trustworthy than theory, and the latter is only to be accepted when it agrees with the former."
JOHN P. BRUCK.
Los Angeles, Cal.
For the American Bee Journal.
Remedy for Foul Brood.
MR. EDITOR.-Some years ago, and during several seasons, about the middle of summer, when the weather was very dry, several of my hives gave forth a very offensive odor, perceptible some distance off, and made me apprehensive that the bees were troubled with foul brood. They appeared to be in a healthy condition, and I did not open the hives to make an examination, but waited to see if such should prove to be the case. After a time the offensive odor ceased to be perceived, and the hives proved to be as healthy as ever. I then came to the conclusion that the cause of it was lack of a supply of pure water, and made arrangements to supply them with it, which I have done ever since, and have not since then found any signs of unhealthiness among any of my bees. On the contrary, I have reason to believe that the plan I have adopted is the surest to ward off disease. And it is my belief that impure water is the prime source of foul brood in any locality, and would earnestly recommend to all api. arists who are troubled with it among their bees, to give this plan a fair trial, feeling confident that if they will do so, all traces of the disease will disappear, and never be known among them again
so long as they keep their bees supplied with pure, fresh water, which they consume in large quantities during the height of the breeding season.
On the north side of my apiary is a fence, just outside of which is a cistern of pure rain water. From a small reservoir containing four or five gallons of water, a small iron pipe is conducted under ground about twenty-five feet, terminating in the apiary grounds, in a nipple two feet above the ground, through which a small jet of water issues, falling into a small vase or basin, through which the pipe has been conducted. This is supplied with fresh water daily during the season, and is very freely visited by my bees, especially during seasons of drought, which we sometimes have in this climate. My apiary is not a large one, but on some days I have estimated that over 20,000 bees would visit this little fountain. Natchez, Miss. JNO. R. BLEDSOE.
For The American Bee Journal. Honor to whom Honor is Due.
Several times, seeing Mr. Dadant hit at in the JOURNAL, I concluded to give my testimony in case of imported queens. In October, 1869, rather late in the season, I received an imported queen from Mr. Dadant and introduced her successfully. This queen was well marked, but not as light as others I have, but she was the only one I ever had who reproduced herself every time, and I raised quite a number of queens from her during three years. This queen was good for four years. At the end of the third season she was superseded, and I found a young queen besides the old mother in the hive. At once I removed the old queen and introduced her to a rather weak colony, where she laid some, but before cold weather set in, I found her again superseded and gone. If I could get a queen like that again, no price would be too high; but this may be an exception, as I paid a few dollars extra for selecting a good queen; and sure enough, I never have seen a better.
For the American Bee Journal. Effects of the Extractor on Brood.
My experience and observations on this subject are quite different from any opinions I have ever seen explained.
With an extractor that runs steady, it is perfectly easy to turn it fast enough to empty new honey in warm weather without the least injury to eggs or worker brood; but it is more uncertain about drone larvæ, as the cells are so large that they lay perfectly loose in the cells when they are as large as half-grown workers, and at that size they are heavy enough to be
removed from the cells with a very low motion of the extractor.
I think those that lose brood by the use of the extractor either turn too fast, or their extractor does not stand solid and Consequently shakes and jars the brood and dislocates it. But I think it is more like. ly that the brood is dislocated by shaking or jerking the bees off the combs, and the operator not thinking that he is handling the combs much rougher to get the bees off than the extractor does to take the honey from the cells; and if he finds any dead larvæ in the cells he wrongfully blames the extractor for it.
I have my screens lean back from the centre, which bring the cells more to a level, and the honey is easier thrown out, and the brood being nearer the centre, there is not so much force on it. Ionia Co., Mich.
S. K. MARSH.
For the American Bee Journal.
My Comb Foundation.
Four years since I wrote a friend in Europe to send me the apparatus, in use there, to make comb foundation. He sent me two plates (made of type metal) weighing 26 pounds, but being so busy with my farm I did not use them until last August; and this was how I did it:
I melted good clean wax in a can 15x11 inches, and 31⁄2 inches wide, to accommodate the size of my frames.
Take a pane of window glass 10x14 inches, moisten it with a strong solution of salt water (made with table salt), dip the glass into the melted wax (of 140 to 150 deg. Fahr.) hold it free, so long as the wax is soft, then put the waxed glass into fresh water, and then you can take off the glass two sheets of thin wax, to be pressed in the apparatus for making artificial comb foundation, in a common cider press. Prepare a stand and cover for the metal plates.
I filled the wax can with warm water (110 deg.) and dipped the wax sheets preparatory to pressing, to make them soft enough to receive the configurations. The inside of the metal plates I moistened with a solution of sal soda, to prevent the sheets from sticking, by the hard pressing necessary. After getting off the comb foundation from the plates, I put it in fresh water to wash off the soda.
I used this artificial comb foundation for worker cells, and it was very valuable to me in making artificial colonies. My frames are 11x12, and the comb foundation 8x12; these I placed between finished combs. The bees readily work out the cells; it is pleasant to see them work on it.
The best temperature for preparing the sheets is 90 deg. Sal soda, (washing soda) not cooking soda, must be used on the plates. HENRY BOSSHARD. Highland, Ill.
For the American Bee Journal. Bee Smoker.
MR. EDITOR: Fearing there may still be found a few who are deterred from keeping bees from fear of stings, allow me: to describe a smoker easily manufactured by any one with a little ingenuity. It is a modification of the Quinby, and though quite as effectual, may be made at a trifling cost. To a two-ounce tin box, solder on one side near the bottom a small tube four or five inches long, leading to the inside, opposite this in the bottom of box punch one-half inch hole and cover with perforated tin or fine wire cloth. This box should be attached by small wrought iron nails or screws to a small pair of bellows made of one-fourth of an inch board and covered with sheepskin, having a hole about three and a half inches from point to correspond with hole in bottom of box. Our own instruments are five inches wide by eight inches long, with spring holding them open attached to the inside, so that they can be worked with one hand. When wanted for use, the box may be filled with a little roll of cotton batting, dry decayed wood or other material. DR. D. R. PORTER. Long Island, New York.
For the American Bee Journal.. Spring Management.
Now Spring is at hand, and bee-keepers have their bees out of their winter quarters, the next thing in order is to breed them up and prevent them dwindling away during the cold spring months. To secure this, we must see that they are kept warm, and have proper stores and combs.
To keep them warm, the hive must be tight, and the entrance contracted until it is very small; have a good quilt and some. papers over the top of the frames, and take away all combs, if there is more than they can cover; leaving them the best worker brood-combs with honey stored in the top of them; make passages through them about four inches from the top, and place them in the front end of the hive, and one comb full of honey behind them,. and contract the size of the hive according to the number of combs left in it. This can be done in different ways, either by using papers or by tucking the back end of the quilt down behind the combs. Whatever is used, it must be close-fitting, to keep out the cold and retain the heat and prevent any bees getting behind it and chilling.
Some bee-keepers recommend a board for a partition, but I think either of the others is better, as they can always be fitted to the hive; when in case a hive is stuck up with propolis, it would interfere with the board. The object of con
tracting the size of the hive is that the bees will not have so much space to keep warm, and can better protect themselves and brood, and rear brood faster.
To induce the queen to deposit eggs, and the workers to rear them, it is necessary to keep a portion of the honey unsealed.
I have no occasion to feed any artificial pollen, as there is a bounteous natural supply in my range as early as the weather is warm enough to permit the workers to gather it.
As for honey resources, I think, I have as good as the country affords. Yet there are times during the season when there is no yield of honey in the flowers, and yet my bees never cease breeding until cold weather in October, if there is unsealed honey in the hives.
To get the best results in breeding, the brood combs must be interchanged by moving the central ones apart that have the most brood in, and inserting between them the outer ones that have the least brood in, until all are equally filled with brood, and as the colony increases, and the weather becomes warmer, the combs should be moved apart, and empty worker combs inserted between them in the brood nest; also empty frames should be inserted in the brood nest as fast as they can fill them with new combs, or better still, to insert frames with combs that were partly finished last fall. The above management will secure the best results in breeding, but when empty combs are inserted for increasing the brood nest, care must be taken not to increase it beyond the strength of the colony; or in case of a cold spell they cannot protect all the brood, and some of it will be chilled and lost, and the object sought will be defeated. Ionia Co., Mich. S. K. MARSH.
For the American Bee Journal.
Extracting from and Exchanging Brood Frames.
Page 210, AMERICAN BEE JOURNAL for 1875, commences an article from W. C. P. I do not know who he is, we always like to see the full name of the person writing any piece. If he does not like to give us his post office, leave that out, but give the name, county and state. He says the bees move nearly all the eggs, etc., from strange combs, or combs from other hives put in with different bees. Now, my experience is entirely different. With my bees it makes no difference whatever. My friend, W. C. P. may have bees of a different disposition from mine.
Some one, in one of the back numbers of the JOURNAL, speaks of putting all the combs back in the hive just as they come out, every one in its own place. We should make our combs every one straight and nice, (and the good apiarist will do it),
so that they will fit any place, and in all places. If some of them at first have bumps or raised places on them, spring them back and pare them off until they are even. How can the keeper of many colonies dispatch business and get through in extracting, artificial swarming, etc., where he has to put every comb back in the same position it occupied before? Such practice may do for some persons, but it will not do for me. Some say, do not extract from the brood chamber. I know, under certain circumstances, it is very important to extract from the brood chamber. This is often necessary when we are only using one story hives. If we want honey we must have plenty of bees to gather it. In order to have plenty of bees, we must have ample room for the queen to lay. We know that without the free use of the extractor her room is often encroached upon, and that their instinct is for storing as close to the brood as possible, and that they are miserly and will not eat it out until compelled to do so. I often extract the outside combs of the brood chamber, widen out the middle sheets of brood, and set empty combs in the middle. This gives the queen room to spread herself again. E. LISTON. Virgil City, Mo., March 29, 1876.
For the American Bee Journal. Melilot Clover as a Honey Plant.
After a fair trial with the Melilot clover I find it is the best honey plant in Amer. ica. Sow the seed in April or May, with anything, or any kind of grain, or or on any kind of soil, and it will grow. The earlier it is sown the better. It does not bloom until the second season, generally from the 1st to the 10th of July. It remains in bloom from 60 to 90 days. If you should want to have it come in late, say about the first of August, when you see it showing signs of blooming, cut it back to about six inches high, and you will get a late run of honey, which the bees will store in boxes. Fall frosts will not injure it. I have seen bees at work on it on October 5th. Webster describes it as a great honey plant. It makes a good quality of honey. My bees have wintered on Melilot honey this winter, and they have never wintered as well since I have been in the business. I have lost only two stands out of one hundred and ninety. They show no signs of dysentery, (except the two). They were put in the cellar on November 16th, and taken out about March 10th.
I don't think this clover would be good for cattle or horse pasture, although I have sowed it in my cattle pasture, and they keep it well fed off. On good ground I have had it grow seven feet high. Every other honey plant, last year, failed to give any honey.
I got 6,000 pounds of hay, all from Melilot, and I do know if it had not been for my Melilot clover, I should have failed to get any honey. I don't think there is any other plant that is as good to enrich land as Melilot clover. I think so much of it, I expect to sow forty or fifty acres for my bees. It always blooms when all others fail. I could not keep bees without it. Any bee-keeper who has tried it, will not be without it. Lee County, Ill.
For the American Bee Journal. Can Bees Hear?
I do not claim to be master of bee literature. I have not read near all the books on the subject, nor do I think I ever shall; neither am I master of all their natural powers, instincts, and peculiarities, but I hold that bees have, at least, five seuses, and perhaps six,-seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling, the sense of touch, and common sense, this teaches them not to use extravagant means to accomplish small ends.
All the senses enumerated, I think are generally admitted among bee-keepers who have carefully studied the subject, except the sense of hearing. This seems to be a bone of contention. As I stated above, I have not read all the works on bee-culture, but all those I have read, are not positive on this point: namely, "Can bees hear?" The theories generally admit the probability of their possessing this sense, but as far as I am aware, it has never been demonstrated by actual experiment and proof. One writer in Novice's Gleanings, (I have not the paper with me, hence I cannot give name or date,) who says he has lectured on bee-culture, states, that he has never been enabled to discover that bees can hear, although he has tried many experiments, such as shouting, rattling tin dishes, playing the fiddle, etc.; and this seems to be the general result reached by all those who have tried. Others, again, are firm in the belief that they cannot hear. Last winter an experienced bee-keeper offered to bet with me, that I might go down in his cellar among the bees, and shout with all my might, and I could not disturb the bees in the least, so firm was he in his belief that bees cannot hear. I might have lost the bet, had I made the attempt, but it would have been no evidence that bees are deaf.
First, allow me to point out the hypothesis that from a natural standpoint would indicate that bees can hear.
It is a universal law in nature, that she does not tolerate anything absolutely useless in her domain. Those who are at all acquainted with her workings, and especially those who have studied Darwin, will readily admit this. Nature is strictly economical upon this point, although she is exceedingly extravagant upon others.
Take now, for instance, the most perfect of all the creatures, examine him closely and in no part of his body, internally or externally, will you find anything that is actually superfluous; to be sure, there are muscles for which we have no use at present, and "land-marks" which point to a different state of things; of the former we may cite the muscles connected with the ear, which although dormant and useless at present, point back to a time when we had use for them, and could prick up our ears, perhaps like any other ass, or the muscles under the skin, showing that that membrane could be set in motion at a stage of human development, when such a motion was necessary to our well-being. We are also possessed of teeth, called "eye-teeth," upon which there seems to be a surplus expenditure of strength for our present use; we find them developed more in some individuals than in others, protruding sometimes considerably beyond the others; this according to the theory of "evolution" and "progression," indicates that the human race was at one time carnivorous.
Without enumerating more instances, let us apply this end to bees: We find that they have the power common to most insects, of emitting many peculiar noisesthey distinctly express anger, contentment and fear. The first, all bee-keepers recognize in the fine hiss, and the change when flying, from the honest hum of industry, to a finer key, which plainly warns you to beware. The second, we recognize in the peculiar hum emitted when the busy workers come home laden from the fields; how often do we see them stop for a moment at the entrance of their domicile and spread their wings, and the sound is immediately recognized as one of contentment and happiness. The third may be discovered by striking the hive suddenly when a peculiar rattling noise will penetrate the whole cluster. There are many other distinct sounds,such as the piping of the queen, and also of the workers when ofttimes they are running over the comb; the different degrees of sound emitted by the queen in her flight, the drone and the worker, etc. Now then, if. bees were deaf, all this music would be lost to them; and if we apply evolution, it would point back to a time when they could hear, but as this would be the reverse of progression, and as it is impossible to see why they should need this sense at one time more than another, we must drop it as untenable, and the hypothesis points to the fact that they can hear!
Now for the experiment, proving that they can hear: Often thinking of the challenge by the bee-keeper last winter, I was tempted to try some experiment by which my position could be sustained, but having read and heard so much about such trials which proved useless, I had
little hope of success; nevertheless, one time when examining a stand of Italians, when holding up a frame for inspection, I gave a shout, and a rather loud one, when to my surprise and joy at the discovery, every bee upon the comb made a momentary check in her movementsnot a motion was visible-but the check was only momentary-they immediately resumed their wonted movements. I have tried this, time and again, with the same result, also by bringing the shout down to quite a low key. I am also quite satisfied that swarms as they issue from the hive, are confused by the rattling of tin-ware, and alight in consequence thereof; but I shall prosecute my experiments still further the coming season, if I handle bees, and hope to make further developments in this direction. J. D. KRUSCHKE. Hamilton, Ill., Feb. 10, 1876.
For the American Bee Journal. Beeswax vs. Comb.
MILK AND HONEY APIARY,
BEESWAX CREEK, April 6, 1876.}
MR. EDITOR: I thank you very cordially for the notice of that part of article referred to as page 104, namely that Honey comb is one thing and beeswax another and very different thing." I am not in the habit of noting small typographical errors or criticisms on any. thing I may write. (This with me is a rule,) but in this case, with your permission, I will make an exception and proceed to show some of the facts, which I suppose to bear on the opinion expressed. I have this day under a strong magnifying power, examined some small flakes of broken comb, and also, some much thinner shavings of the same comb, melted on thin manilla paper. After cooling, the melted side closely resembles the unmelted flakes in texture, no real difference appearing. The shaved side is compact and shines like polished silver, and while of the same thickness as the flakes of comb, or even much thinner, they are much more tenacious and malleable. Of course the wax is homogeneous, while in thick places at the corners of the cells the walls of the cells are easily separated, small flat particles cleaving off readily. These particles seem to be patches overlapping each other, and forming the thick. ened walls of the cells. No one can fail to see the difference, even without the aid of a microscope.
Honey comb is not all alike; it differs not in thickness only, but in permeability. Honey comb not unfrequently has a wet or oily look, and as bee-keepers say, "sweats." Honey in boxes often has this look, and on close examination, the honey seems to have soaked into and through the caps. No observant box-honey raiser has failed to notice this not uncommon
feature. In the fall of 1873, I had hundreds of boxes filled, and capped perfectly, which would not hold their contents, while on the hives even. The caps remained perfect, but the honey escaped. The bees thickened the caps, but still honey got out. Many of the combs contained hardly any honey, while others had only a few cells in different places, which were empty. Many of the combs could be sliced off just beneath the caps, without touching honey at all. Nearly every box was from eight to thirty-two ounces below weight, while the boxes were quite full of very pretty comb.
Honey comb rapidly decomposes in a damp, warm atmosphere. This is shown by leaving honey comb in shady, damp places in the grass, where it soon loses its plasticity and adhesiveness.
Hives of bees wintered in cellars or on their summer stands, frequently have mouldy combs, the edges of which are so decomposed that they seem destitute of wax. The form of the cells may remain, but the substance is so disintegrated, it will scarcely hold together.
From the above, Mr. Editor, I trust you will see that honey comb, while, perhaps, chemically the same as beeswax, is not like beeswax in those features which give comb-honey its peculiar virtues.
Beeswax is not soluble in any of the conditions given above, neither does it disintegrate in the mouth like honey. comb. "The proof of the pudding is in chewing the string."
Now, Mr. Editor, as I said in the article referred to: please give us a lift, if for no other purpose than self-preservation, still give us a lift.
People who buy comb-honey do so, not because it is pure, nor because it is honey in the comb, but because the comb heightens its flavor and enhances the pleasure of eating it.
Need I say that beeswax foundation will not heighten the pleasure of eating honeynot muchly!
The card of C. O. Perrine, on the cover of the current number, throws some light on this subject, which I trust you will pardon me for referring to, as it may be even more significant than the above facts.
Mr. Perrine does not cherish, it is presumed, a very friendly feeling towards comb-honey producers, neither the producers of extracted, as his letters and articles, previously written, will show. Said honey-producers have taken him as the representative man, and the great head of the "ring honey-adulterators." The cry of adulteration on every hand, has been one of the leading causes, why his and other fancy-jarring-honey establishments have been compelled to run "Kanuc" and other fancy brands of syrups in connection with honey.
In the infant days of honey-jarring, it