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Tom Seeley explores 'Darwinian beekeeping'

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We are delighted to welcome top international honey bee scientist Tom Seeley as our guest speaker in this special online lecture .

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In pre-covid times we held our annual Lecture Day on this date; we're sorry not to be able to meet up in person but hope you will be able to come together to hear scientist and author Tom Seeley speaking live from the US.

Darwinian beekeeping

Darwinian beekeeping is an evolutionary approach to beekeeping, one that seeks to provide managed honey bee colonies with living conditions that are as close as possible to those of wild honey bee colonies. The goal is to harmonize our beekeeping methods with the natural history of Apis mellifera, and thus allow the bees to make full use of the toolkit of adaptations that they have evolved over the last 30 million years. I will review ways in which the living conditions of honey bees differ between wild and managed colonies. I will also show how we can pursue beekeeping in a way that is centered less on treating a bee colony as a honey factory and more on nurturing the lives of the bees.

Tom Seeley

Thomas D. Seeley, biologist and writer, is the Horace White Professor in Biology at Cornell University, where he is a member of the Department of Neurobiology and Behavior. He teaches courses on animal behaviour and does research on the behaviour, social life and ecology of honey bees. Tom is also an avid beekeeper; he began to master this craft when he was a high school student in the late 1960s. His scientific work is summarized in five books: Honeybee Ecology (1985), The Wisdom of the Hive (1995), Honeybee Democracy (2010), Following the Wild Bees (2016), and The Lives of Bees (2019). In recognition of his scientific contributions, he has been elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), and a member of the German National Academy of Sciences. He writes: "These honors are gratifying, but for me the most important “prizes" by far are the discoveries that I have made about the natural lives and inner workings of honey bee colonies."

Please register with Zoom well ahead of time so that we can get started promptly on the evening using this link: Tom Seeley and Darwinian beekeeping

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