Colony Development

Schätzen der Bienen

Many factors influence the development of a honey bee colony - for example, climate, honeyflow conditions, genetic predispositions, pathogens, apiary management, etc. These factors undergo constant change, which is why colony development is a highly dynamic and complex process.
What element of beekeeping management, and what environmental factors have a decisive influence on the number of bees in a colony? Can beekeepers influence colony development by means of a stimulant feed? Are there major differences in development between the genetic lines? These and other similar questions are dealt with in the pamphlet 'Colony Development in the Honeybee' and have been the subject of research by the COLOSS network.

To determine the effect of individual parameters on colony development, we have developed a colony-size evaluation tool which is currently used as the research standard throughout the world. This highly precise tool3 is not limited to use in the scientific sphere, however. By evaluating the strength of two to three colonies every three weeks over the entire beekeeping season, beekeepers can obtain information on colony development that no book can provide. This evaluation can constitute the basis for proper apiary management.

The priniciples on which this tool is based are described in this pamphlet.