Almost Wordless Wednesday: 2014 National Honey Bee Day

Theme: Sustainable Gardening Begins with Honey Bees

Last Saturday was National Honey Bee Day. I know we already had Pollinator Week and Moth Week but this day is solely for honey bees – and aren’t we glad because honey bees are the ONLY insects that make honey. So next time you stir honey into your tea – thank a little bee.

Bee laden with pollen (photo courtesy Honey Bee Haven)
Bee laden with pollen (photo courtesy Honey Bee Haven)

Bees are hard workers that have to visit 4.5 million flowers to collect enough nectar to make 16 oz. of honey. They travel 112,000 miles to do this. It truly is amazing! But bees need help. There aren’t as many flowers as there used to be.

 

Plant flowers for bees (photo from Pinterest, photo credit not known)
Plant flowers for bees (photo from Pinterest, photo credit not known)

Bees are such amazing creatures. What can you do to help draw attention to their plight? Get involved! Here’s a short list. Visit these organizations that support honey bees and other pollinators.

National Honey Bee Day:

National Honey Bee Day(logo courtesy of National Honey Bee Day)(logo courtesy of National Honey Bee Day)(logo courtesy of National Honey Bee Day)
National Honey Bee Day (logo courtesy of National Honey Bee Day)

 

Honey Bee Haven (logo courtesy Honey Bee Haven)
Honey Bee Haven (logo courtesy Honey Bee Haven)

 

Pollinator Partnership planting guide (Courtesy Pollinator Partnership)
Pollinator Partnership planting guide (Courtesy Pollinator Partnership)

 

Center for Honey Bee Research (Logo courtesy Center for Honey Bee Research)
Center for Honey Bee Research (Logo courtesy Center for Honey Bee Research)

 

Xerces Society (Logo courtesy Xerces Society)
Xerces Society (Logo courtesy Xerces Society)

 

Long live the Queen Bee! (photo courtesy Center for Honey Bee Research)
Long live the Queen Bee! (photo courtesy Center for Honey Bee Research)

 

For more information, you can also visit the EPA site to read the most recent update on the Colony Collapse Disorder. If I’ve over looked any group, please contact me below and let me know.  Connie Schultz, Master Gardener/Composter (Cornell Extension ’95) now volunteering in Johnston County, NC)

 UPDATE 8/25/2014

Dear Readers, I need to make a correction to my post as I’ve just learned that I may have spoken (or quoted) incorrectly when I said that honey bees are the ONLY insect to make honey. I had an interesting conversation with Amie Newsome, one of my county agents, who was telling me that bumble bees also make a “honey” – not quite the same in all resects as the honey bees.) In the bumble bee life cycle the workers die in the fall and only the queen survives by hibernating through the winter – so they don’t need to store honey to eat over the cold months. She will start a new underground colony again in the spring. The bumble bees collect nectar to feed their new hatchling bumble bees – but only a few ounces or enough for a few days. Bumble bee colonies are also smaller than bee hives with only 50 to 400 bumble bees per colony while honey bees may have as many as 40,000 so they have correspondingly larger stores of honey. For more information on the differences between honey bees and bumble bees, here’s a fun site for kids called BioKids from the University of Michigan and another site which focuses on bumble bees called Bumble Bee Conservation Trust.

 

 

Wordless Wednesday – The Beauty of Moths

 

Geometer moth, Erateina sp.
Geometer moth, Erateina sp.

 

Green-banded Urania, Urania leilus
Green-banded Urania, Urania leilus

 

Lily moth, Polytela gloriosae
Lily moth, Polytela gloriosae

 

African Sunset moth, Chrysiridia rhipheus
African Sunset moth, Chrysiridia rhipheus

 

Scarlet-bodied wasp moth, Cosmosoma myrodora
Scarlet-bodied wasp moth, Cosmosoma myrodora

 

Snout moth, Pieralid sp.
Snout moth, Pieralid sp.

 

Crinum moth, Spodoptera picta
Crinum moth, Spodoptera picta

 

Brahmin moth, Brahmaea hearseyi
Brahmin moth, Brahmaea hearseyi

 

Idalus herois
Idalus herois

 

Zigzag White banded Noctuid, Donuca lanipes
Zigzag White banded Noctuid, Donuca lanipes

All photos found on Pinterest

Posted by Sylvia Hacker, Dona Ana Co. NM EMG

 

 

 

Celebrating the Beauty and Diversity of Moths Around the World

 

What is National Moth Week?

From Maine to Florida, California to Pennsylvania and in more than 25 countries around the world, citizen scientists will mark the third annual National Moth Week, July 19-27, with moth-watching events and educational programs focused on these amazing creatures so vital to the Earth’s environment and ecosystems.

 

Started in New Jersey in 2012, National Moth Week celebrates the beauty, life cycles, and habitats of moths, encouraging “moth-ers” of all ages and abilities to learn about, observe, and document moths in their backyards, parks, and neighborhoods.

 

Moth Sheet used for attracting and identifying moths. (Photo courtesy National Moth Week)
Having a moth-watching event is as easy as turning on a porch light at night and watching what happens, or going outside in daylight to find caterpillars and diurnal moths. (Photo courtesy National Moth Week)

 Global Citizen Science

 

National Moth Week (NMW) encourages children and adults to become “citizen scientists” and contribute photos and data to online databases. Last year, thousands of photos and pieces of data were submitted by participants. With events already registered in 49 states, the District of Columbia and 35 countries  National Moth Week is again aiming to top last year’s registration. Individuals, groups and organizations are invited to register events on the NMW website free of charge and have them posted on the NMW’s U.S. or international map. (All registrants receive a certificate of participation.) Public event locations this year include the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, Philadelphia; North Cascades National Park, Washington State; Trinity River National Wildlife Refuge, Liberty, TX; Museum at Prairie Ridge, Raleigh, NC; Boyd Hill Nature Preserve, St. Petersburg, FL; Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Tucson; and Jefferson County Park, Fairfield, IA. All events are listed on the NMW website.  

 

A sheet and a bright light are all you need! (Photo courtesy National Moth Week)
Participants can use ordinary light bulbs, UV lights, or mercury vapor lights to draw moths, or brush sweet moth bait on tree barks for a bigger response. (Photo courtesy National Moth Week)

 2014 the Year of the Silk Moth

 

NMW 2014 is designated “the year of the silk moth,” to encourage moth-ers to look for and learn about these fascinating moths in the Saturniidae family. National Moth Week’s symbol, the Automeris io, is a colorful silk moth found in the U.S. and Canada. Silk moths are found throughout the world, but their populations recently have shown declines. Some of the largest and most visually striking moths in the world are silk moths. There are about 2,300 species of silk moths worldwide. For more information and photos of North American silk moths, visit the Saturniidae page of Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA), a partner of NMW. Through partnerships with major online biological data depositories such as BAMONA, Project Noah, Encyclopedia of Life, Discover Life, and iNaturalist, National Moth Week encourages participants to record moth distribution and to provide information on other aspects of their life cycles and habitats. Show us what you found? Post it on our Facebook page. Happy mothing!

Thank you to the National Moth Week and Liti Haramaty for sharing this information with us!   

Connie Schultz, Master Gardener/Composter (’95 Cornell Extension) now volunteering in Johnston County, NC