Add African honey bees to the mix

I was thrilled to read the article in last week’s Rappahannock News about Connor Culbertson receiving a nomination to West Point Military Academy. Way to go Connor! I have known Connor and his family for several years now — our initial connection was through honey bees and beekeeping. In addition to all his other volunteer and academic achievements, Connor is a beekeeper.

In fact, while the recent article about Connor’s West Point Nomination mentioned his trip to Brazil where he volunteered with a group doing humanitarian and spiritual outreach, during that trip Connor also worked with a family that had a beekeeping business. He helped them move some of their African honey bee (AHB) hives from one location to another. This is not as easy as it sounds, and is not the same as moving European honey bees, which are the vast majority of bees we have as beekeepers in the United States.

Connor is a member of the Northern Piedmont Beekeepers Association (NPBA), the local bee club for this area. He was our featured speaker at our NPBA meeting this past October where he gave a presentation about his experiences working in Brazil with the African honey bee. It was fascinating as he described, complete with photos and maps, all the twists and turns of relocating the bee hives, which included a number of unexpected situations (like a broken trailer loaded with African honey bees that had to be left at the side of the road and then retrieved) that kept the NPBA members on the edge of their seats.

Congratulations to Connor on his nomination to West Point — maybe he can get an apiary set up there, too!

Karen Hunt

NPBA Treasurer
Amissville

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