Friday, December 19, 2008

Local Honey Bees

I know that there are some bee lovers in my family- so I thought I’d share what little I know about honey bees here. 1. As we’ve driven outside Kigali on a couple of excursions, I’ve often seen signs posted in French proclaiming a Bee Cooperative. I’d love to go in one day and ask them what they do. From what I learned in the U.S., African bees are more aggressive than the type American beekeepers prefer; but that has not slowed down entrepreneurs in Rwanda. Local market shelves are laden with clear Mason Jars filled heavy with the amber miel; unprocessed pure African honey. Why expats buy the honey bear in Nakumatt for quadruple the price I have no idea. 2. When we drove to Ruhengeri this past Saturday to take Brenna to see a cultural village we noticed what seemed to be rolled-up straw mats nestled between branches high in the tree tops. Rob said, “I bet those are honey bee hives.” Turns out they were and so here are two pictures; hives circled for clarity, (we were driving and the pictures are blurry). As I learn more about how these hives function and how the honey is harvested I’ll let you know.

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