Monday, 15 March 2010


A secret world of heat in honeybees - Professor Jürgen Tautz.

It will be worth watching BBC One's new series Richard Hammond's Invisible World, where technology is used to give a glimpse into previously unseen worlds. The episode on the 23rd March will be used to reveal the findings of Professor Jürgen Tautz, the head of the bee group at Würzburg University, in Germany. He has discovered that Honeybees precisely control the temperature inside their hives to determine which job their young will perform in the colony when they mature into adult bees. See this Daily Telegraph article for a sneak preview. Prof. Tauz was the main pull for many of us to sing up for the recent Somerset BKA Training day. Unfortunately, he was ill at the time and advised by his doctors not to travel.

What a great shame that the BBKA, who are quoted in the Telegraph article, only see it as an opportunity to interfere with bees more more by using this new work as a criteria for selecting bees for breeding. Why can't they accept that their interference is wrong? Up to now they thought that bees leaving empty cells was a bad thing and tried to breed it out! The bees know best how to breed strong bees, leave them alone BBKA and try sustainable bekeeping!!!!

Prof. Tautz's books are always to be recommended, especially The Buzz about Bees: Biology of a Superorganism

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