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Presentation at the Sonoma County Beekeepers Association
November 14, 2022 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm PST
The talk will be about our 7-year research study of wild, unmanaged honeybees in a Wildlands Preserve in Mendocino County that is owned by Sonoma State University. We started the project in 2021 and will conclude around 2028. We envision a multidisciplinary project that allows for multiple stakeholders to collaborate. Currently, we are working with Texas A&M and also UC Riverside. We use beelining as a tool to track bees and locate BeeTrees. Topics will include some of the new revelations of beelining, including tips and challenges. After an initial assessment phase (locating Beetrees), monitoring, sampling, and other activities will take the lead. So far, we could document 100% winter survival (with a small initial data set).
How can we integrate the qualities and conditions that allow honeybees in the wild to thrive into our backyards and beekeeping? One approach we have taken is that we are exploring ways to incorporate the biomimicry of natural nest conditions and developed TreeNests as a novel tool for conservation. Honeybees as novel wildlife in the Americas is a rich and pioneering field of research. Environmental challenges such as climate emergency and the 6th mass extinctions are new emerging compass points for apian conservation (and that of all species) that invite us with utmost urgency into the development of truly sustainable systems.