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be nectar in a flower one year, and none the next; that there may be nectar in the flowers in one field, and none in the next field to it, in the same season; and that there may be nectar in a part of a field, and not any, or very little, in the remainder of it; that a field may get poor and “run out,” as it is called, and not produce any honey, the same as a wheat field that has been sowed too often to wheat; that the richer the land is, the more honey it gives ; that the first crop of the clover is the best; that black bees will work on red clover in this locality as well as Italians, and that neither will work on it in some seasons. The colony that had the most drones in my yard last season, had the most surplus, but it was the strongest colony I had. The AMERICAN BEE JOURNAL is cheaper by half than any of the monthlies. There are as many pages, and as large, and you get four in a month to only one of the others. There need be no more contention over the Punic bees ; they simply are not in it. Apis niger is buried in oblivion, and we shall hear of them no more.
Richland Centre, Wis.
North American Bee-Keepers' Association.
ing. As I am situated, I find it neces. sary to be a specialist.
J. E. Crane-I see no reason why beekeeping need not be a success. In Vermont, bee-keepers are as successful as the farmers. I think specialty ought not to be discouraged, yet it is well to have something in connection with beekeeping, as it is sometimes a failure.
J. E. Hetherington-I think I ought to qualify my remarks. Mr. Crane says that bee-keeping pays in Addison County, Vt. That is a good location. The same is true of Central New York. The trouble is that bee-keepers are not positive enough in their methods to succeed as specialists. So many think that a colony has a good queen ; that it has enough honey for Winter; that its combs are good enough, etc. The trouble is they do not know; and that is why so many fail.
G. M. Doolittle-I was a farmer's boy, and “ took to bee-keeping' much against my father's wishes. I once overheard my father telling a
man how anxious he was that I should be a farmer. Said he: “I have prayed that Gilbert would make a failure of beekeeping, but it looks now as thongh he was going to succeed in spite of my prayers.” I worked the farm on shares until I saw my way clear to make a living from bees. I have lived to see that farm decline in value from $75 to $40 per acre. Where would I have been if I had remained on the farm ? I should have been barely making a living. I have been told that a man who could successfully manage 100 colonies of bees, possessed ability that would command an annual salary of $1,000. But salaried positions are uncertain. I have a home, the fresh air and freedom of the country, and a comfortable living. It is true that I am not now a honey-producing specialist. I have been thrown into queen-rearing, but I look back with regret to the time when I made money from honey alone. In 1874 I drew all my honey (several tons) to Syracuse, and sold it for 28% cents a pound. Now it would not bring half that, and, for me, there is more money in queenrearing.
N. D. West-In my opinion, it is not best for a young man to start out as a specialist. If a man gets a few bees, and likes bee-keeping, the next thing you know he will be neglecting his regular business for the bees. Then he will soon become a bee-keeper, and the other business will be dropped.
Next W. Z. Hutchinson read an essay
W. Z. HUTCHINSON.
[Continued from page 21.] Should Bee-Keeping be Made a
Specialty ? This was the next topic taken up for discussion. Mr. McKnight said that is he wished to make a grand success of bee-keeping, he should make it specialty. Bees can be kept in connection with other pursuits. He scarcely knew whether he would be called a specialist or not. He certainly gave special attention to bee-keeping.
J. E. Hetherington--In connection with this topic, I may say I remember a letter that I wrote to Mr. Quinby, when I was a young man, asking him if he would advise a young man to make a specialty of bee-keeping. Mr. Quinby said no. Later in life I referred him to this letter, and asked him how he would now answer it; and he said that his answer would still be the same. Just look over the list of those who kept bees 20 years ago, and have succeeded so well that they are still content to follow the business. How few they are ! Mr. Quinby advised Winter school-teaching, dairying, or some kind of manufactur
written by Wm. F. Clarke, on the “ Prevention of Swarming.”
[This was published last week on page 17.-Ed.]
H. S. Stewart-I think Mr. Clarke gives some good points; one is that of giving plenty of room, but that is considerable work. Removing the queen is one way.
J. E. Crane-I have tried several methods, and I must confess I do not know how to prevent the disposition to swarm. Blacks have a greater dispositior to swarm than have the Italians. tried introducing young queens, but it failed. I have given it up in disgust, and decided to let them swarm, and then so manage them as so get the best work out of them by manipulation.
F. H. Cyrenius-I raise brood into the upper story, put a queen-excluder between the two stories, and the bees in the upper story rear a queen, and the bees do not swarm. I work for extracted-honey. In producing combhoney I cannot prevent swarming.
G. M. Doolittle-In producing combhoney I have never succeeded satisfactorily in preventing swarming. If a colony is kept from swarming, it is thrown into
an abnormal condition. This is unprofitable. It is better to let them swarm, and then so manage as to make the most out of them.
S. Corneil—I know of a bee-keeper in Canada who puts 4 colonies on a revolving platform, or rather a colony at each end of a cross that may be revolved. Each day the cross is given a quarter turn.
This mixes the bees, and the mixing seems to disconcert their plans for swarming.
P. H. Elwood-I do not know as I have anything new to offer on this point, It is the same old system that I have used
so long-that of removing the queen. I will say, however, that there is a difference in strains of bees.
Ira Barber-What do you do with the queen when you remove her ?
P. H. Elwood-If she is old we kill her. If we wish to keep her, we take with her a frame or two of bees and brood.
A Member-I have tried to prevent swarming by introducing young queens, but it did not work this year.
N. D. West-I remove the queen just about as the bees are ready to swarm, and put in a queen-cell that will hatch
three days. The queen batches, and becomes fertile, and the bees do not swarm.
By the time the queen is ready to lay, and the colony in
any danger of again getting the swarming fever, the season is over. All the cells are cut out, if there are any, when the queen-cell is given. The cell must be protected with a queen-cell protector wben given, or it would be destroyed before the bees had discovered their queenless condition, and were ready to accept a young queen. I use hives with considerable room in the brood-chamber, and shade the hives. With a contracted brood-chamber this plan might not be so successful.
J. E. Crane-I have tried putting in a cell, but the bees would always swarm. I have been more successful by introducing virgin queens.
Next came an essay by G. H. Knickerbocker, entitled : The Italian BeeWhat are the principal points of excellence, and to which qualities should we give the preference, with a scale of markings as for neat stock ?”
[This was published last week on page 20.-ED.]
G. M. Doolittle-I am satisfied that the Italian bee is a hybrid. We might adopt a standard for thoroughbreds, but I cannot see how it can be done, and yet to do no injustice.
Mr. Leonard—I see that some are advertising five-banded bees. I would like to know if they are more than thoroughbreds ?
J. M. Hambaugh-I would like to have Mr. Doolittle tell why he calls Italian bees hybrids ?
G. M. Doolittle--Black bees are always black.
They are a fixed type. They do not sport. When brought from Italy, Italian bees may produce two-banded or three-banded bees. After awhile we find some of them showing four bands. By selection and care in breeding the four-banded bees we now have produced the five-banded bees, and I expect that we shall yet have bees that are all yellow. As Italians do not have a fixedness in their markings, I say that they are hybrids.
C. P. Dadant-Black bees do differ. We have the black, the gray and the brown, all called black or German bees. Bees from Italy differ in color. The bands may not always be just so bright, but they are there.
E. R. Root-We have imported many queens from Italy, and their progeny always shows the three bands.
G. M. Doolittle-There is no such thing as a one-banded or two-banded bee. If a bee shows any yellow, it shows yellow on three bands.
in two or
E. R. Root-To a certain extent I agree with Mr. Doolittle.
I will say this much : If we look at a bee carelessly, or, perhaps, I should say casually, we would say that it was one or twobanded, when the same bee filled with honey and placed upon a window would show three bands.
C. P. Dadant-The bee-keepers' association of Italy asserts most emphatically that all the bees of Italy are yellow.
J. E. Crane-We know that many three-banded bees “sport,” but, for all that, I see no objection to the adoption of a “standard of excellence.”
0. L. Hershiser-Have imported bees ever shown more than three bands ?
C. P. Dadant-I believe we were the first to import Carniolans, but we quit importing them, and said nothing about it, because we found out that we were getting nothing but black bees. The bees from the other side of the mountains were of a different brown. This proves what I told Mr. Doolittle, that black bees do differ.
To save time a committee was appointed to draft a standard of excellence for Italian bees, to be laid before the convention for its consideration. The following were appointed: G. H. Knickerbocker, G. M. Doolittle, C. P. Dadant, and J. E. Crane.
Next came a communication from Dr. A. B. Mason, on “ The Outlook for Apiculture at the Columbian Exposition. The Doctor was unable to be present. His duties as postmaster were such that he could not leave at this time. W. Z. Hutchinson read the communication.
[This was published on page 19.-Ed.]
J. E. Hetherington-At the Centennial we were allowed to enter our honey as late as September; yet there were only four exhibitors. It is difficult to keep honey over, and have it look well. I think it should be so managed that we can have at least until the first of August before placing honey on exhibition.
S. Corneil—I think bee-keepers should overwhelm them at Chicago with letters stating what is wanted.
Unless space is granted in advance, when the time comes for it to be used, it will be occupied with something else.
J. E. Hetherington—There should be a committee appointed that will attend to this matter from now until the World's Fair opens.
O. L. Hershiser-By July half the number of visitors to the World's Fair
will have made their visit. We migut have extracted-honey on exhibition early, and then change to comb-honey after the new crop had been harvested.
J. E. Hetherington—That would be all right. Let us show honey and implements, and then make a grand show of honey at one particular time, but all this can be arranged and looked after by a committee.
J. M. Hambaugh-I think it would be better and grander to have all the honey show, from all the States, in one grand display.
It was finally moved and carried that a committee of three, with Dr. A. B. Mason as chairman, be appointed to look after the apiarian interests at the coming Columbian Exposition.
By vote it was decided that P. H. Elwood and J. M. Hambaugh should be the other two members of the committee.
The Use of Separators. The question was asked, through the question box, does the use of separators pay for the loss of honey caused by their use ? The committee appointed to answer these questions replied that it is not admitted that there is a loss attending their use, but even if a loss did occur, they ought to be used.
J. E. Crane-I have had sections filled in which a bee-space had been allowed around the outside of the sections. The combs were well attached, much better than when no such space was given. Combs are more travel-stained when no separators are used. I secure no more honey by abandoning the use of separators.
N. D. West-I can get more honey with less trouble by using separators.
Place of Holding the Next Meeting.
Buffalo, New York, Toledo, Cleveland, Denver, and two or three other places were mentioned as being desirable places for holding the next convention, but the choice finally fell upon Washington, D. C.
Election of Officers.
The election of officers resulted as follows:
President-Eugene Secor, Forest City, Iowa.
Vice-President-Capt. J. E. Hetherington, Cherry Valley, N. Y.
Secretary-W. Z. Hutchinson, Flint, Mich.
Treasurer- E. R. Root, Medina, 0.
Spraying of Fruit Trees. After the election of officers, Prof. J. A. Lintner, State Entomologist for New York, asked to be allowed to say a few words in regard to the practice of spraying fruit trees with Paris green or London purple, or any arsenical poison. In substance, he said that this practice had become indispensable to success in fruit growing. The egg of the codling-moth is laid just as the blossom falls, and a short time after this is the time to spray the trees in order to destroy the justhatched larva ; but spraying is also resorted to in order to destroy the curculio and other insects, and it would be an advantage, so far as the destruction of some insects is concerned, if spraying could be resorted to previous to and during the bloom. I have always advised against spraying during the time of blooming, although I think experiments are needed to prove that spraying the bloom is injurious to bees. I would like to know if any one present knows that bees have been injured by the spraying of trees in bloom.
C. P. Dadant-Mr. J. G. Smith, of New Canton, Pike County, Ills., lost 60 colonies of bees from the heavy spraying of trees before, during and after the bloom.
Prof. Lintner-I would ask if there was any examination made of the honey to see if a trace of arsenic could be detected ? Unless this was done, or there are other similar cases, I must beg leave to doubt if bees were killed by the poison. There are other injurious insects besides the codling moth; and, in fighting some of these, it is necessary to spray before and during the bloom, but, as I have already said, I have advised against spraying during bloom, because there have been reports that bees have been killed thereby. I think it is in Illinois only where legislation has been attempted upon this point.
I. L. Scofield—We had a large number of healthy colonies when spraying began, and many colonies were dead when the spraying season was at an end.
Prof. Lintner—There need be question upon this matter, as an analysis of the honey gathered, or of the honey in the sacs of the bees that die, would set the matter at rest.
C. P. Dadant-That would not answer, as the bees that eat the poison may not reach their home.
Then, again, how are we to prove that the bees obtained
the poison from such-and-such an orchard ? Bee-keepers never have good, strong, healthy colonies die during apple bloom. It is a thing unheard of, except where trees have been sprayed, during bloom, in the neighborhood.
J. E. Crane-I know of a man who sprayed his trees during bloom, and reported finding large quantities of dead bees under his trees.
R. McKnight-I think many bees are killed by the use of Paris green on potato vines.
G. H. Knickerbocker-Many use the poison too strong.
C. P. Dadant-If the poison used is strong enough to kill the insects that feed upon the blossoms, why will not the bees that gather the nectar suffer in a like manner? In our locality, spraying during bloom has been dropped.
P. H. Elwood-I saw a statement by Prof. Cook, saying that he had fed bees a solution of arsenic of the standard strength for killing insects, and it killed the bees. Now, if the poison kills one insect, why not another ?
Prof. Lintner-The insects killed are so small that the poison used for the work need not be strong enough to injure the bees.
G. M. Doolittle-I should not like to have it go out that the spraying of potato vines causes more damage than the spraying of fruit bloom. We do not lose bees at the time of the year when potatoes are being sprayed, but at the time of spraying during fruit bloom.
E. R. Root-In the great mass of correspondence that passes through our hands, I notice that many complain of the loss of bees from the spraying of fruit trees, but no such complaints come at the season of the year when potatoes are sprayed.
The Society decided by vote that at 'the present state of our knowledge, the
spraying of fruit trees while in bloom is condemned.
A vote of thanks was given Prof. Lintner.
It was thought that a committee ought to be appointed to make or look after experiments made with a view to proving whether the spraying of trees while in bloom actually does lead to the destruction of bees. The following gentlemen were appointed : S. Corneil, Lindsay, Ont., J. E. Crane, Middleburg, Vt., and I. L. Scofield, of Chenango Bridge, N. Y. This committee was to act with Prof. Lintner.
The following from Mr. R. F. Holtermann was read, on Some Facts not Generally Known
about Rendering Beeswax. The subject to which I am about to refer I shall not attempt to clothe in much language, but it is important, and particularly so in view of recent discussions upon the spread of foul-brood through wax, and how it is to be prevented.
We know that there is scarcely any, if any, natural produce, be it in the animal or vegetable kingdom, which can be heated to any material degree above that in which it was produced, and retain the same properties of nature as it did before so heated, yet we appear to ignore the fact in the melting of beeswax.
The general bee-keeping public do not appear to be aware that wax can be injured by heating almost to the boiling point, or by long and continuous heating at a somewhat lower temperature. Is such the fact? I am convinced that whilst the average wax is rendered with less injury now than in former years, the average wax has lost a portion of the valuable properties which it possessed when first generated by the bee.
Of course, you have a right to ask, Is this a suggestion upon the line of which I wish you to experiment and observe in the future, or have I proof? Well, it is both. I believe it will only require careful reflection and a few arguments in
wax in it, stronger than that built from the average beeswax for comb-foundation. I can assign no other reason for this than that already given. You will all be able to understand what this has to do with the foul-brood question.
Instances of foul-brood, although never in my own a piary, have come under my notice, and I do not feel inclined to believe that the disease is spread through beeswax after melting. Yet we should use every precaution until we are sure it is not so spread.
If we have to injure our beeswax by using such a precaution, it is certainly time steps were taken to find out if the disease of foul-brood can be spread as indicated, and that arrangements were made to properly test the matter.
R. F. HOLTERMANN.
Killed by the - Sting of a Bee.
DR. J. W. VANCE.
We read not long since in a medical journal the statement that a young man, Wm. H. Danley, of Williamsport, Pa., died from the sting of a bee in 15 minutes from the time he received the sting. Mr. D. complained of excruciating pain ; his hand at once began to swell rapidly, and in a few minutes his whole system was affected. Ten minutes after being stung, he fell into a comatose condition, and before aid could be summoned, he was dead.
There were some surmises as to the why and wherefore, but it is idle to attempt to explain why a bee-sting will kill a robust young man, when so many delicate people are stuny hundreds of times every Summer with no poisonous effects, except a slight local inflammation. We were somewhat amused by the query of the writer in the medical journal, that the bee that stung the deceased might have imbibed some virulent poison.
It caused us to ask, whence do bees imbibe the ordinary poison with which they charge their stings ?
About all we know of the nature of the poison is that it is similar to formic acid, but what its relative component ingredients of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen are, we have not yet found out. It is a secretion of certain glands that is gathered into a receptacle called the poison sac. Usually, when the bee inflicts a sting, the poison sac is lost with the sting, which becomes fixed in the skin, by the minute barbs with which
to lead many of you to at least reflect.
Wax produced in countries considerably south of us, should surely, if anything, be stronger and better able to resist a high temperature, and yet the average beeswax from the South will break more easily in the hive than our
After months of reflection, I can only come to the conclusion that the reason is, that in these localities the methods of rendering are more crude, and it is more liable to injury from overheating in that process.
Again, I know and have seen, combfoundation made from wax rendered in the solar wax extractor, put in the hive much thinner than ordinarily, and yet not sag or break down. I could assign no other reason for this, than that by the rendering it received less injury, as it had not likely reached the same temperature as that rendered by different methods.
Observation has led me to conclude that natural comb is, for the amount of