Kathy, (aka "Bessie"), and I began our beekeeping experience in the fall of 2008, when we began a year-long course in beekeeping through the Indian Creek Nature Center in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. We got our first package of bees in April of 2009. At the suggestion of our daughter, Jessica, we are logging our beekeeping experience. Hope you find it interesting. It has been interesting, rewarding and entertaining for us as well.
Jess helping with a feeding
Our daughter, Jessica, completed the work for her PhD in entomology last summer. She and her husband, Matt, who is also an entomologist, live in upstate New York where Matt works on his research with crane flies for Cornell University. Well, Jessica has now gotten a post-doctorate position, also with Cornell, that will allow her to research the importance of bumblebees in pollination of the pumpkin crop in upstate NY, which is a major crop in the area. One of the variables she will be exploring is how the bumblebees compare with honeybees in their ability to pollinate the crops. I will be very interested in following her work to see what she discovers. Here in eastern Iowa, I clearly see bumblebees as being very important in the pollination of so many things. I think they cover much more territory, as far as kinds of plants, than my honeybees. The honeybees really seem to me to be much more selective (translate "picky"). So, we're excited for her in getting the position and also excited because of the nature of the study, a subject we're quite interested in as well. Good luck Jess!