Honey Bee Lab

Subscribe to the Melitto Files blog

The Melitto Files blog is hosted by the University of Florida Honey Bee Research and Extension Laboratory. It features blog posts written by the HBREL staff, Florida apiary inspectors, and Master Beekeepers on topics... Read More

Understanding Integrated Crop Pollination

As the world’s dependence on pollinators increases, researchers from around the country work to develop practical strategies to ensure that our nation’s crops are adequately pollinated. In a collaboration between nearly a dozen universities... Read More

A Fond Farewell

Hello Florida Beekeepers! I wanted to extent a heart-felt thank you for your support and encouragement over the past few years. After six plus years as a graduate student in the UF Honey Bee... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: February

Recommendations for your apiary in February: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. Additional resources: The Benefits of Pollen to Honey Bees How to Quantify Nosema Spores Infection Rate... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: January

Recommendations for your apiary in January: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848 

Varroa Biology and Management: An Overview

Varroa destructor is the Number One pest of our Western Honey Bee, Apis mellifera. This pest (commonly called Varroa or Varroa mite) is a parasite that feeds on a bee’s hemolymph, causing honey bee stress and... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: December

Recommendations for your apiary in December: his calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848 

Beekeeper Management Calendar: November

Recommendations for your apiary in November: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848 

Changes are coming to Bee College

The UF Honey Bee Lab is constantly striving to improve our extension programs in an effort to be more effective and approachable to beekeepers across Florida. Because of this, we are making some significant... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: October

Recommendations for your apiary in October: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848    Additional resources: Tools for Varroa Management Varroa Sampling Methods (video)... Read More

Mosquito control and Florida beekeepers

As Florida continues to recover from the effects of Hurricane Irma, many mosquito control districts in the state are temporarily stepping up their spray programs. It is important to realize how and why... Read More

Apiary hurricane preparedness

As you are preparing for the probable arrival of Hurricane Irma to Florida, your safety, and that of your family and neighbors is the top priority. As long as you are otherwise safe and prepared,... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: September

Recommendations for your apiary in September: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848    Additional resources: Tools for Varroa Management Varroa Sampling Methods (video)... Read More

Award-Winning Student

Congratulations Ashley Mortensen!  Ashley has been awarded the 2017 Southeastern Branch John Henry Comstock Award given by the Entomological Society of America’s National Office. Ashley Mortensen is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: August

Recommendations for your apiary in August: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848    Additional resources: Tools for Varroa Management Varroa Sampling Methods (video)... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: July

Recommendations for your apiary in July: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848    Additional resources: Tools for Varroa Management Varroa Sampling Methods (video)... Read More

Water sources for bees, not mosquitoes

This summer, keep your bees’ water source from becoming a breeding ground for mosquitoes. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) Best Management Requirements for beekeepers requires that managed honey bee colonies have... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: June

Recommendations for your apiary in June: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848    Additional resources: Tools for Varroa Management... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: May

Recommendations for your apiary in May: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848    Additional resources: Swarm Control for Managed... Read More

Subscribe to the Melitto Files blog

The Melitto Files blog is hosted by the University of Florida Honey Bee Research and Extension Laboratory. It features blog posts written by the HBREL staff, Florida apiary inspectors, and Master Beekeepers on topics... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: April

Recommendations for your apiary in April: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848    Additional resources: Swarm Control for Managed... Read More

Veterinarians’ guide to honey bee antibiotics: Webinar

A new FDA ruling means that many beekeepers will need a prescription from a veterinarian to use certain honey bee antibiotics. The UF Honey Bee Lab hosted a webinar on February 22, 2017 to... Read More

Looking out for Nosema in spring colonies

A guide to quantifying the honey bee pathogen, Nosema, in colonies Regular subscribers to this blog may have noticed multiple mentions of Nosema in recent posts of the Beekeeping Management Calendar. These recommendations have highlighted the importance... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: March

Recommendations for your apiary in March: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848  Additional resources: How to Quantify Nosema Spores... Read More

Taking advantage of honey bees’ natural behaviors

Honey bees are an insect with a complicated life history and social organization. The honey bee that we use in the United States, Apis mellifera, is a cavity dwelling insect that flies to flowers... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: January

Recommendations for your apiary in January: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management, and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848  Additional Resources For information on colony nutrition... Read More

New Year, new rule: A look at the FDA ruling on prescriptions for honey bees

Starting January 1st, 2017, if you choose to use antibiotics for the prevention or treatment of the bacterial diseases American foulbrood (AFB) and European foulbrood (EFB) in honey bee colonies, you will need a... Read More

Beekeeper Management Calendar: December

Recommendations for your apiary in December: This calendar is meant to be a reference point for management, and is not comprehensive. The year-round Beekeeping Management Calendar can be found here: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in848  Have something to say? Join the discussion on... Read More

Pollinator protection that starts in the lab

In vitro literally means “in glass” in Latin. More broadly in vitro describes a process occuring outside of its biologically normal setting, generally in a laboratory. The idea summons up images of scientists in white lab coats... Read More

Field study of a new pesticide

Pesticides in Agriculture Pesticides are an important tool for farmers to control unwanted insect pests. In recent years many commonly used pesticides have been shown to be dangerous to bees that they come into... Read More

Zika and Florida Beekeepers

A letter from the Florida Chief of Apiary Inspection, David Westervelt: The Southeastern United States is in a triple threat situation for mosquito proliferation and control. Listed below are conditions making it favorable for... Read More

Reducing African honey bees using managed European colonies

At the UF HBREL we love when our science has practical applications for Florida beekeepers. Below is a summary of one such study with African and European honey bee colonies. Hypothesis: The presence of managed... Read More

Value of Bees to Blueberry Fruit Set

Florida Blueberry Industry Blueberry growers in central and south Florida mostly utilize the highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum). It does not require many chill hours (the necessary number of hours where temperatures fall between 32 and... Read More

A Tale of Two Subspecies: Genetics studies of South African honey bees

There are two factors that play an integral role in distinguishing between populations within a species. First, an organism’s geography restricts its ability to disperse. Individuals in adjacent populations migrate between one another at... Read More

There’s a new Bee College in town, and it’s better than ever.

Mark August 12th and 13th on your calendar folks.  South Florida and Caribbean Bee College is right around the corner! Yes, you read that correctly. The UF Honey Bee Research and Extension Lab is... Read More

Varroa: the honey bee destructor

Varroa destructor Background:   Varroa is the most devastating pest of the western honey bee. It is responsible for the death of honey bee colonies world-wide, resulting in millions of dollars of damages. The... Read More

Melitto Files gets a new look

The Melitto Files has hit the web in a whole new way! We are transitioning from a newsletter format to an online blog. This will be the new source of information about the Honey... Read More