Presentation on theme: "The Future of Beekeeping in Kenya Some Issues to Reflect on….. By Tom Carroll, Beekeeping Manager, Baraka Agricultural College, Molo, September 2007."— Presentation transcript:
The Future of Beekeeping in Kenya Some Issues to Reflect on….. By Tom Carroll, Beekeeping Manager, Baraka Agricultural College, Molo, September 2007
Bee Husbandry There are many challenges on the production side – low yields, empty hives What bee husbandry do we need? Feeding to prevent absconding, swarm control, re-queening etc? Need to understand bee husbandry and the biology of the bees – do we understand this fully – absconding, migration etc – where is the research? How much management is right? (aggressive bees and absconding)
Which is the best hive? Hive technology – which is the best for our farmers – Langstroth, KTBH, Traditional, other types? Confusion on the issue The answer for each beekeeper may depend on what he/she has in the pocket and the knowledge, skills, equipment and support available to him/her
Defensive bees Living with defensive bees on small farms – problems – livestock/human deaths? Defensive bees can have severe economic consequences if livestock are stung and injured/killed Extensive dry land areas – how are they being utilised?
Bee Multiplication and Breeding Re – queening of aggressive colonies with more manageable and productive queens – less swarming and absconding – more production Who is doing this important work of bee selection and breeding in Kenya? More manageable bees can make management such as swarm control easier leading to better yields as well as making bees easier to keep on small farms
Commercial bee production Lacking in Kenya – South Africa largest beekeeper has circa 10,000 Langstroths – why not in Kenya? How do we develop a more commercial industry? Pollination contracts – what are the opportunities? Security – having secure apiary sites – theft of hives and honey an obstacle
Marketing Much of the effort is directed here but what about production? Low quantities of product available Diversify to other products – pollen, propolis etc an opportunity Organic production opportunities
What we need to do: More formal research in beekeeping by Kenyan Universities and Research Organisations Involve beekeepers in research – Baraka Action Research approach – incorporate local knowledge Breed better bees
Farmer research into a safari ant repelling plant - Nakuru
What we need to do….. Develop bee husbandry guidelines for Kenyan beekeepers Move from Let-alone beekeeping to more management for better yields? Better training & extension services Stakeholders must work together for the benefit of the industry
And finally…. African Beekeeping Resource Centre (ABRC) being established in Kenya as an NGO to work on African beekeeping development The aim of ABRC is to bring together African beekeeping knowledge and expertise. For More information see: www.apiconsult.com www.apiconsult.com For more information on Baraka College see: www.sustainableag.org www.sustainableag.org With thanks to SHDI www.selfhelp.ie who support beekeeping programmes in Kenya (Baraka) and Eritreawww.selfhelp.ie Thank you!!