What is Apiculture?
Definition of apiculture: Apiculture is the practice of keeping bees as well as the manufacturing of honey and beeswax. Or, The raising and care of bees for commercial or agricultural purposes.
Species of honey bee
- Indian bee: Apis cerana indica.
- Rock bee: Apis dorsata.
- European bee: Apis mellifera.
- Little bee: Apis florea.
- Dammer bee or stingless bee: Melipona irridipennis.
Honey bee castes
The insect which is lived together is called a social insect. Honey bee lives in a colony. In a colony, have to maintain many rules and regulation based on the division of labor. In a colony, they are divided into several grades. These groups are nothing but called caste. In the honey bee, there are four castes.
A. Queen: Only one queen per colony, mother of the colony, sexual female developed from fertilized eggs have sting used to kill the rival queen. Large-sized, 1520 mm in length, can lay eggs 10003000 per day. Can preserve more than two crore sperm. Mate once in life, longevity 35 years. No works, only reproduce.
B. Drone: Less in number per colony, bisexual male, developed from unfertilized eggs, no sting, medium-large sized, 1317 mm in length. Mate only once and then died, longevity 24 months, No work only feeding, Fly in the air when bright light.
C. Worker: 5,000-50,000 per colony, sterile female, developed from fertilized eggs, have sting used to defense, small size, 1115 mm in length, longevity 36 months. All are a worker.
Life cycle of honey bee
Importance of Apiculture & Beekeeping
There are many agricultural-based countries in the world. We have many flowers in the field, roads, and even in the jungle, full of nectar. If we take a little bit of effort, we collected honey from these flowers to bring our economic solvency and even develop our national wealth. However, through rearing honey bee, we can get two things-
Uses of honey
Surprisingly, honey has many uses and benefits which are as follows-
1. Use as food: About 80 chemical constituents identified from honey have high food value. Specially, these are children, and older people play a great role to them. Those are hard laborers and players; honey is great food. We can regain lost energy very quickly by using honey. Honey helps reduce constipation, bloating, and gas. Substituting raw honey for white sugar can help in weight management.
2. Use as medicine
- Consumption of raw honey can reduce the risk of developing diabetes and help aid medication used to treat diabetes.
- It can help reduce cholesterol and therefore decrease the risk for coronary artery disease.
- Raw honey makes the brain function optimally by strengthening the heart and improving blood circulation.
- If sourced locally, raw honey can help reduce seasonal allergies.
- Consumption of honey promotes beneficial antioxidant agents, stimulates antibodies, and combats harmful microbial activity.
- Honey can help improve urinary tract infections due to its antibacterial properties.
3. Use as Cosmetics
- It can be used as an affordable face cleanser to fight off acne, gentle on sensitive/all skin types.
- A spoonful of raw honey mixed with olive oil and a squeeze of lemon can be used as a hydrating lotion.
- The raw honey can cleanse and restore the health of hair and scalp.
- The raw honey hair mask can help boost shine.
4. In agriculture: Honey bee plays a great role in agriculture by pollination.
5. Solve the unemployment problem: Many people can solve their unemployment problem by involving themselves in apiculture.
4. Miscellaneous uses
- Used in manufacturing different drinks.
- Prepare bacterial media.
- Poisonous bait.
Use of wax
Wax is used for various purposes. Some are given below-
- Candle industry, where wax is the main ingredient.
- Pharmaceuticals, especially for making capsules.
- One of the best benefits of using beeswax on the skin is moisturizing and softening.
- Cosmetic industry; face cream, lipstick.
- Furniture industry.
- Used for Making electric insulators.