Thomas White Woodbury (1818–1871) was an English journalist and beekeeper, devoting himself entirely to beekeeping from 1850 onwards after the death of his son. He was responsible for introducing Ligurian or Italian bees to Britain in 1859.
Apis mellifera ligustica is the Italian bee which is a subspecies of the western honey bee.
In 1859 Woodbury imported a yellow Ligurian queen from Mr Hermann in Switzerland. She arrived by train on 3 August in a rough deal box with about a thousand worker bees. Woodbury had prepared an 8-bar hive, including four frames of honey and pollen plus one empty comb, and he gently shook the newcomers into this. Then he took a skep of local black bees weighing 34.5 pounds and shook them out in clusters on four cloths spread out on the grass; helped by his friend Mr Fox. He found and took out the queen, before placing the hive with Ligurian queen and bees over the shaken bees. Alas they fought, and in the morning there were many dead bees, but he hoped for the best. By 17 August, great loads of pollen were going in, and he knew that the first queen from outside Britain had been introduced. When he wrote about this in the ‘Cottage Gardener’ he had letters from all over the country asking for stocks from this queen for next year, so at once he telegraphed for two more queens (one for Mr Fox) and they arrived on 27 August having been four days on the way. Although most of the bees were dead, each package had their queen still living, and each queen was successfully introduced to a colony.— Ron Brown - "Great Masters of Beekeeping"
Woodbury held strong views on the superiority of Ligurian bees over the native Old English Black bee (A. m. mellifera). An article by him published in the “Bath and West of England Agricultural Journal” in 1862.
From my strongest Ligurian stock I took eight artificial swarms in the spring, besides depriving it of numerous brood combs. Finding in June that the bees were collecting honey so fast that the queen could not find an empty cell in which to lay an egg, I was reluctantly compelled to put on a super. When this had been filled with 38 lbs. of the finest honeycomb, l removed it, and as the stock hive, a very large one, could not contain the multitude of bees which issued from the super, I formed them into another very large artificial swarm. The foregoing facts speak for themselves; but as information on this point has been very generally asked, I have no hesitation in saying that l believe the Ligurian honey-bee to be infinitely superior in every respect to the only species that we have hitherto been acquainted with.— Thomas White Woodbury
He further developed the Langstroth hive design of Rev. L.L. Langstroth, which featured a movable frame around the bee space.His version was known as the 'Woodbury Hive' and was marketed on his behalf by George Neighbour & Sons, the London specialists in beekeeping supplies. He was a regular contributor under the name of “A Devonshire Beekeeper” to the "Cottage Gardener", "Journal of Horticulture", "Gardeners’ Chronicle", and "The Times".
In modern beekeeping, a Langstroth hive is any vertically modular beehive that has the key features of vertically hung frames, a bottom board with entrance for the bees, boxes containing frames for brood and honey and an inner cover and top cap to provide weather protection. In a Langstroth hive, the bees build honeycomb into frames, which can be moved with ease. The frames are designed to prevent bees from attaching honeycombs where they would either connect adjacent frames, or connect frames to the walls of the hive. The movable frames allow the beekeeper to manage the bees in a way which was formerly impossible.
Rev. Lorenzo Lorraine Langstroth was an American apiarist, clergyman and teacher, and considered to be the father of American beekeeping. He created the modern day Langstroth hive.
Woodbury lived at 17 Lower Mount Radford Terrace, Exeter, in Devon, and was the son of W. H. Woodbury, a linguist and part-owner of the "Exeter and Plymouth Gazette". Thomas played an active role in the management of the newspaper, before concentrating on the study of bees.
Some of the earliest Italian bees were sent from England to Australia at the request of Edward Wilson (1813-1878), president of the 'Acclimatization Society of Victoria'. The bees left England in September 1862, spending 79 days at sea in Woodbury hives before landing at Melbourne.
Edward Wilson was an English-Australian journalist and philanthropist.
Charles Darwin's enquiry about possible varieties of honeybee in Germany, landed on the desk of Woodbury, who at the time was editor of the bee section of the "Journal of Horticulture", and was forwarded by him to the German journal "Bienen Zeitung" in 1862.The following year Woodbury suggested to Darwin that it might be interesting to compare the cell sizes of Apis indica with those of the European species.
Charles Robert Darwin, was an English naturalist, geologist and biologist, best known for his contributions to the science of evolution. His proposition that all species of life have descended over time from common ancestors is now widely accepted, and considered a foundational concept in science. In a joint publication with Alfred Russel Wallace, he introduced his scientific theory that this branching pattern of evolution resulted from a process that he called natural selection, in which the struggle for existence has a similar effect to the artificial selection involved in selective breeding.
A beehive is an enclosed, man-made structure in which some honey bee species of the subgenus Apis live and raise their young. Though the word beehive is commonly used to describe the nest of any bee colony, scientific and professional literature distinguishes nest from hive. Nest is used to discuss colonies which house themselves in natural or artificial cavities or are hanging and exposed. Hive is used to describe an artificial, man-made structure to house a honey bee nest. Several species of Apis live in colonies, but for honey production the western honey bee and the eastern honey bee are the main species kept in hives.
A beekeeper is a person who keeps honey bees.
Beekeeping is the maintenance of bee colonies, commonly in man-made hives, by humans. Most such bees are honey bees in the genus Apis, but other honey-producing bees such as Melipona stingless bees are also kept. A beekeeper keeps bees in order to collect their honey and other products that the hive produce, to pollinate crops, or to produce bees for sale to other beekeepers. A location where bees are kept is called an apiary or "bee yard."
The Buckfast bee is a breed of honey bee, a cross of many subspecies and their strains, developed by Brother Adam (born Karl Kehrle in 1898 in Germany), who was in charge of beekeeping from 1919 at Buckfast Abbey in Devon in the United Kingdom. Breeding of the Buckfast bee is now done by breeders throughout Europe belonging to the Federation of European Buckfast Beekeepers (G.D.E.B.). This organisation maintains a pedigree for Buckfast bees, originating from the time of Brother Adam.
In beekeeping, bee brood or brood refers to the eggs, larvae and pupae of honeybees. The brood of Western honey bees develops within a bee hive. In man-made, removable frame hives, such as Langstroth hives, each frame which is mainly occupied by brood is called a brood frame. Brood frames usually have some pollen and nectar or honey in the upper corners of the frame. The rest of the brood frame cells may be empty or occupied by brood in various developmental stages. During the brood raising season, the bees may reuse the cells from which brood has emerged for additional brood or convert it to honey or pollen storage. Bees show remarkable flexibility in adapting cells to a use best suited for the hive's survival.
A top-bar hive is a single-story frameless beehive in which the comb hangs from removable bars. The bars form a continuous roof over the comb, whereas the frames in most current hives allow space for bees to move up or down between boxes. Hives that have frames or that use honey chambers in summer but which use similar management principles as regular top-bar hives are sometimes also referred to as top-bar hives. Top-bar hives are rectangular in shape and are typically more than twice as wide as multi-story framed hives commonly found in English speaking countries. Top-bar hives usually include one box only, and allow for beekeeping methods that interfere very little with the colony.
A worker bee is any female (eusocial) bee that lacks the full reproductive capacity of the colony's queen bee; under most circumstances, this is correlated to an increase in certain non-reproductive activities relative to a queen, as well. Worker bees occur in many bee species other than honey bees, but this is by far the most familiar colloquial use of the term.
A hive frame or honey frame is a structural element in a beehive that holds the honeycomb or brood comb within the hive enclosure or box. The hive frame is a key part of the modern movable-comb hive. It can be removed in order to inspect the bees for disease or to extract the excess honey.
Hive management in beekeeping refers to intervention techniques that a beekeeper may perform to ensure hive survival and to maximize hive production. Hive management techniques vary widely depending on the objectives.
This page is a glossary of beekeeping.
In beekeeping, the Demaree method is a swarming prevention method. It was first published by George Demaree (1832–1915) in an article in the American Bee Journal in 1892. Demaree also described a swarm prevention method in 1884, but that was a two-hive system that is unrelated to modern "demareeing".
Charles Dadant was a French-American beekeeper. Along with Petro Prokopovych, Dadant is considered one of the founding fathers of modern beekeeping.
Moses Quinby was an American beekeeper from the State of New York. He is remembered as the Father of practical Beekeeping and the Father of commercial beekeeping in America. He is best known as the inventor of the Bee smoker with bellows. He was the author of numerous articles and several books on beekeeping.
The Stewarton hive is a type of historical bee hive. Extra boxes below allowed expansion of the brood, and thus strongly inhibited swarming and any tendency for the queen to enter the honey boxes, while expansion with extra honey boxes above the brood area gave ample space for the bees to create surplus honey stores that were easily harvested by the beekeeper. The introduction of this hive is credited to Robert Kerr, of Stewarton, Ayrshire, in 1819.
Langstroth Cottage is a historic building on the Western College campus of Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. It was designated a National Historic Landmark on June 22, 1976. The cottage, built in 1856, is now the home for the Oxford office of the Butler County Regional Transit Authority. It was purchased for Beekeeper L. L. Langstroth in 1859, and he lived there for the next 28 years, conducting research and breeding honey bees.
Charles Butler, sometimes called the Father of English Beekeeping, was a logician, grammarist, author, priest, and an influential beekeeper. He was also an early proponent of English spelling reform. He observed that bees produce wax combs from scales of wax produced in their own bodies; and he was among the first to assert that drones are male and the queen female, though he believed worker bees lay eggs.
The western honey bee or European honey bee is the most common of the 7–12 species of honey bee worldwide. The genus name Apis is Latin for "bee", and mellifera is the Latin for "honey-bearing", referring to the species' production of honey.
Beekeeping in the United States dates back to the 1860s.