Need to Know

Raw Honey vs Antibiotics

posted Feb 4, 2016, 8:04 AM by Margarita Spirichin   [ updated Feb 4, 2016, 8:36 AM ]

Raw Honey Beats Antibiotics – Yes Please!

Ottawa University researchers found that certain types of honey kill bacteria that cause sinus infections, in most cases better than antibiotics.

The researchers have tested raw Manuka forest honey from New Zealand, and raw Sidr forest honey from Yemen. The two killed all floating bacteria in liquid, and 63-91 percent of biofilms — microorganisms that sometimes form a protective layer in sinus cavities, urinary tracts, catheters and heart valves, protecting bacteria from normal drug treatments and often leading to chronic infections. I have often recommended raw honey to help kill off Helicobacter pylori, the bacteria responsible for stomach ulcers.

The most effective antibiotic, rifampin, killed just 18 percent of the biofilm samples in the tests.

Neat Facts About Bees

posted Jan 27, 2016, 8:16 PM by Margarita Spirichin

· There are three kinds of bees in a hive: Queen, Worker and Drone. 

· Only the Queen in the hive lays eggs. She communicates with her hive with her own special scent called pheromones. The queen will lay around 1,500 eggs per day. 

· The worker bees are all female and they do all the work for the hive. Workers perform the following tasks inside the hive as a House Bee: Cleaning, feeding the baby bees, feeding and taking care of the queen, packing pollen and nectar into cells, capping cells, building and repairing honeycombs, fanning to cool the hive and guarding the hive. 

· Workers perform the following tasks outside the hive as Field Bees: Gathering nectar and pollen from flowers, collecting water and a collecting a sticky substance called propolis. 

· Bees have two stomachs - one stomach for eating and the other special stomach is for storing nectar collected from flowers or water so that they can carry it back to their hive. 

· The male bees in the hive are called drones. Their job in the hive is to find a queen to mate with. Male bees fly out and meet in special drone congregation areas where they hope to meet a queen. Male drone bees don't have a stinger. 

· If a worker bee uses her stinger, she will die. 

· Bees are classified as insects and they have six legs. 

· Bees have five eyes - two compound eyes and three tiny ocelli eyes. 

· Bees go through four stages of development: Egg, Larvae, Pupae and Adult Bee. 

· The bees use their honeycomb cells to raise their babies in, and to store nectar, honey, pollen and water. 

· Nectar is a sweet watery substance that the bees gather. After they process the nectar in their stomach they regurgitate it into the honeycomb cells. Then they fan with their wings to remove excess moisture. The final result is honey. 

· Bees are the only insect in the world that make food for humans. 

· Honey has natural preservatives and bacteria can't grow in it. 

· Honey was found in the tombs in Egypt and it was still edible! Bees have been here around 30 million years. 

· A honeybee can fly 24 km in an hour at a speed of 15 mph. Its wings beat 200 times per second or 12,000 beats per minute. 

· Bees have straw-like tongues called a proboscis so they can suck up liquids and also mandibles so they can chew. 

· Bees carry pollen on their hind legs called a pollen basket. Pollen is a source of protein for the hive and is needed to feed to the baby bees to help them grow. 

· A beehive in summer can have as many as 50,000 to 80,000 bees. A bee must collect nectar from about 2 million flowers to make 1 pound of honey. It requires 556 worker bees to gather a pound of honey. Bees fly more than once around the world to gather a pound of honey. 

· The average worker bee makes about 1/12 th of a teaspoon of honey in her lifetime. 

· Bees have 2 pairs of wings. The wings have tiny teeth so they can lock together when the bee is flying. Bees communicate through chemical scents called pheromones and through special bee dances. 

· Every 3rd mouthful of food is produced by bees pollinating crops. Flowering plants rely on bees for pollination so that they can produce fruit and seeds. Without bees pollinating these plants, there would not be very many fruits or vegetables to eat. 

· A single beehive can make more than 100 pounds (45 kg) of extra honey. The beekeeper only harvests the extra honey made by the bees. 

· The average life of a honey bee during the working season is about three to six weeks. There are five products that come from the hive: Honey, beeswax, pollen, propolis, and royal jelly. 

· Beeswax is produced by the bees. Bees have special glands on their stomach that secrete the wax into little wax pockets on their stomach. The bee takes the wax and chews it with her mandibles and shapes it to make honeycomb. 

· Propolis is a sticky substance that bees collect from the buds of trees. Bees use propolis to weatherproof their hive against drafts or in spots where rain might leak in. 

· People have discovered the anti-bacterial properties of propolis for use in the medical field. 

· Royal Jelly is a milky substance produced in a special gland in the worker bee's head. For her whole life the Queen is fed Royal Jelly by the workers. 

· Although bears do like honey, they prefer to eat the bee larvae. 

· Honey comes in different colours and flavours. The flower where the nectar was gathered from determines the flavour and colour of the honey. 

Information from Ontario Beekeepers' Association.

What are bees, wasps and hornets

posted Jan 27, 2016, 8:08 PM by Margarita Spirichin   [ updated Jan 27, 2016, 8:09 PM ]

Bees are fuzzy, flying insects with yellow and black stripes. There are two types of bees common in Ontario: the honeybee (left) and the bumblebee (right).

Wasps and hornets have similar hairless bodies. The major difference between wasp and hornets is size and colour.Wasps (left) are about onethird inch (one centimeter) to one inch (two and one-half centimeters) long. Hornets (right) are larger.Wasps have black and yellow rings, while hornets have black and white (or yellow) rings.
Bees are beneficial to humans because they pollinate plants, whereas wasps and hornets help out by eating other insects.
However, all three can be hazardous. Stings can be dangerous to those allergic to their venom – although these insects will only sting if they feel they or their nests are in danger.
Bees die after they sting. Unlike bees,wasps and hornets will not die after they sting.

What are the life cycles of bees,wasps and hornets?

Each colony of these insects has a queen. The queen can give birth to between 1,000 and 30,000 offspring, depending on the conditions of her surroundings. If the nest is located in a cool, damp place with plenty of food, the number of offspring will be high. The queen is the only member of the community that can give birth. Most wasp and hornet colonies are considerably smaller for most of the year. They reach peak size in September before frosts kill off most of the colony.
Queens can live up to five years. Drones, the males in the colony, can live for 40 to 50 days.Worker bees, the females in the colony, live between one and four months.

What do bees, wasps and hornets feed on?

Pollen and nectar are the main sources of food for bees. Pollen is a fine powdery substance found in the head of flowers (left). Nectar is a sugar-rich liquid produced by plants.
Wasps and hornets are general scavengers feeding on other insects (right), food left lying around and decaying fruit.

How do I know I have a bee, wasp or hornet problem?

The presence of many bees,wasps or hornets flying around your home is the main indicator. These insects will be hunting for food and protecting their nests. If their presence becomes a nuisance, then you have a problem.

Where do bees,wasps and hornets live?

The areas surrounding houses provide a number of ideal homes for bees,wasps and hornets. Some of these areas include verandas, ceilings, attics,walls, trees and shrubs. The insects will find holes and small burrows and set up nests, because holes and burrows are often near food sources (such as fallen fruit, flowers or nectar-producing plants).

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