H to J
Half sisters: Queen or worker bees produced by a single queen and sired by drones that are
not related to each other.
Haploid: An organism or cell with one set of chromosomes; for example, drone bee.
Hemizygous: The condition in which only one allele of a pair is present.
Drones are hemizygous at all loci.
Heterosis: Hybrid vigour.
Heterozygous: An organism with unlike members of any given pair or series of alleles (bee genetics).
Histine Code: "histone code" - a process that sees genetic changes made to proteins called histones within cells' nuclei. The histone proteins might
act as one of the switches that control how the larvae develop. e.g. queen or worker bees.
Hive: Man-constructed home for bees.
Hive stand: A device that elevates the bottom
of a hive up off the ground. Also used to reduce the risk of ‘bee back’ a painful condition caused by bending and lifting hives.
Hive tool: Metal tool for prying supers or frames apart.
HMF (Hydroxymethylfurfural): an organic compound derived from dehydration of sugars by heat and is not acceptable in high quantities in honey. HMF can be used as an indicator for excess heat-treatment. For instance, fresh honey only has low
amounts of HMF—less than 15 mg/kg—depending on pH-value and temperature and age]and the codex alimentarius standard requires that honey have less than 40 mg/kg HMf to guarantee that the honey has not undergone heating during processing, except
for tropical honeys which must be below 80 mg/kg.
Hoffman frame: Self-spacing wooden frame of type customarily used in Langstroth hives, but now more being commonly used in many types of hive in the UK.
Homozygous: An organism with identical members of any given pair or series of alleles.
Honey: Sweet, viscous fluid elaborated by bees from nectar obtained from plant nectaries, chiefly floral, but can
also be from honeydew. Honeydew is a sugar-rich sticky liquid, secreted by aphids and some scale insects as they feed on plant sap. When their mouthpart penetrates the phloem, the sugary, high-pressure liquid is forced into the insect and out of the gut's
terminal opening – basically it is aphid poo.
Honeybee: Genus Apis, family Apidae, order Hymenoptera.
Honey bound: When the brood nest is bounded or restricted by cells/comb
filled with honey.
Honeycomb: Comb built by honey bees with hexagonal back-to-back cells on median midrib.
Honeydew: Sweet secretion from aphids and scale insects.
Honey extractor: (See Extractor).
Honey flow: Period when bees are collecting nectar from plants in plentiful amounts.
Honey house: Building in which honey is extracted
Honey pump: Pump for transferring liquid honey, usually from the extractor to storage tanks.
Honey stomach: (Honey sac) An enlargement of the posterior end of the oesophagus
in the bee abdomen. It is the sac in which the bee carries nectar from flower to the hive or, water to the hive.
Hybrid: Offspring from two unrelated (usually inbred) lines.
Order to which all bees belong, as well as ants, wasps, and certain parasitic insects.
Inbred: A homozygous organism usually produced by inbreeding.
Inbreeding: Matings among related
Instrumental insemination: The act of depositing semen into the oviducts of a queen by the use of a man-made instrument.
Integrated Pest Management (IPM): is a pest control
strategy that uses a variety of complementary strategies including: mechanical devices, physical devices, genetic, biological, cultural management, and chemical management. This system is common in most types of farming.These methods are done in three stages:
prevention, observation, and intervention. It is an ecological ‘green’ approach with a main goal of significantly reducing or eliminating the use of pesticides yet controlling pest populations..
cage: Small wood and wire cage, more usually made of plastic today, which is used to transport queens . The cage usually has a hole which is plugged with candy/fondant which the bees remove to release the queen into the colony.
Enzyme produced by bees that speeds inversion of sucrose to glucose and fructose.
Inverted or invert sugar syrup: is a mixture of glucose and fructose. It is obtained by splitting sucrose into its two components. Compared
with its precursor sucrose, inverted sugar is sweeter and its products tend to stay moist and are less prone to crystallization. Inverted sugar is therefore valued by bakers.
IPM: (See Integrated Pest Management)
Italian bees: A race or variety of honey bee which originated in Italy and has become widely dispersed and cross-bred with other races.Only ONE 'J and One 'K' Item, (unless you have some
- if so please advise email@example.com )
Jenter System: The Jenter kit uses a system of plastic cups or 'cells' on a standard width of frame placed in a brood box in which a
queen bee can lay her eggs. The cells containing the eggs can then be removed from the laying box and placed into an isolated box for larval development - with no direct handling of the larvae.
K : 'K-wing' seen as a symptom of acarite or varroa mite infection. Occasionally present with nosema apis infection.
L to T
Langstroth: A church minister from Pennsylvania
who patented the first hive incorporating bee space thus providing for removable frames. The modern hive frequently is termed the Langstroth hive and is a simplified version of similar dimensions as patented by Langstroth. This type is very common in the USA
but is now being seen in greater numbers in the UK.
Larva: Stage in life of bee between egg and pupa; “grub” stage.
Laying worker: Usual found
in queenless colonies. They are worker bees which lay non-fertilised eggs producing only drones. Laying workers will lay multiple eggs per cell as a panic action due to the colony having no queen. A sign of this situation is a spotty brood pattern without
system, an egg or several eggs are laid on the sides of the cell or off centre, due to the worker being too short in the abdomen to reach the bottom of the cell with her egg/s. Often undersize cramped up drone brood is found in worker sized cells.
Levulose: Non-crystallising sugar of honey which darkens readily if honey is overheated much like caramelising.
Locus: A fixed position on a chromosome occupied by a given gene or one of its
Mandibles: The jaws of insects.
Mating flight: The flight of a virgin queen during which time she mates with one or many drones high in the air away from the apiary. Queens
usually mate with usually from 6 to 10 drones on two or more mating flights, the more drones she mates with the more diverse her offspring will be.
Mead: A pleasant wine made with honey. If spices or herbs are added, the
wine usually is termed metheglin.
Metamorphosis: Changes of insect from egg to adult.
Migratory beekeeping: Movement of apiaries from one area to another to take advantage of honey
flows from different crops e.g to oil-seed rape fields or, to the moors for the heather crop.
Mite: A depilating parasite. See Acarapis woodi and Varroa jacobsoni.
Mutation: A term
used to describe both a sudden change in the alleles or chromosomes of an organism and the changed form itself as it persists.
Nectar: A sweet secretion of flowers of various plants, some of which secrete
enough to provide excess for the bees to store as honey.
Nectaries: Special cells on plants from which nectar exudes.
Nosema disease: Disease of bees caused by protozoan spore-forming
parasite, Nosema apis.
Nucleus (Nuke, Nuc): A small colony of bees resulting from a colony division. Also, a queen-mating hive used by queen breeders.
Nurse bees: Three-to 10-day-old
adult bees that feed the larvae and perform other tasks in the hive.
Observation hive: Hive with glass sides so bees can be observed.
Ocellus (ocelli): Simple eye(s) of bees.
Orientation flights: Short orienting flights taken by young bees, usually by large numbers at one time and during warm part of day. Young bees at first leave the hive backwards in ever increasing circles to keep sight of their home
and to get a geographical fix on it in relation to the local environment and landmarks.
Package bees: A quantity of bees with or without a queen shipped in a wire and wood cage to start or boost colonies.
Paralysis: (See bee paralysis).
Parthenogenesis: Production of offspring from a virgin female.
Petroleum Jelly: Used to reduce the adhesive ability of propolis between
surfaces in the hive.
Pheromones: Chemicals secreted by animals to convey information or to affect behaviour of other animals of the same species. (See queen substance.)
combined stigma, style, and ovary of a flower.
PMS (Parasitic Mite Syndrome): For years we have been seeing diseased bee larvae with symptoms resembling a cross between foulbrood and sacbrood. This new disease seems to
be limited to colonies infested with Varroa mites. Additionally, beekeepers have experienced bees disappearing completely from previously healthy colonies in the early autumn. This situation is most likely associated with Varroa mites, viruses or even a combination
Pollen: Male reproductive cells of flowers collected and used by bees as food for rearing their young. It is the protein part of the diet. Frequently called bee bread when mixed with nectar and fed to larvae.
Pollen baskets: corbiculae. Area on hind leg of some bees adapted for carrying pellets of pollen.
Pollen patty: Mixture of soy flour, sugar syrup, brewers yeast and and sometimes when available,
natural pollen. It is used in times of pollen shortage as a pollen substitute for bee feed.
Pollen trap: Device which forces bees entering the hive to walk through a 5-mesh screen, removing pollen pellets from their
legs into a collecting tray.
Pollination: The transfer of pollen from the anthers of a flower to the stigma of that or another flower.
Pollinator: The agent which transfers pollen
such as an insect e.g. a bee.
Polliniser: The plant source of pollen used for pollination; e.g., polliniser varieties of apples and pears must be planted in order to produce a crop. Bees must carry the pollen from one
variety to another.
Proboscis: Mouth parts of bee for sucking up nectar, honey, or water.
Propolis: A glue or resin collected from trees, buds or, other plants by bees; used to close
holes and cover surfaces in the hive. Also called ‘bee glue’.Now being used in skin creams etc.
Pupa: Stage in life of a developing bee after larva and before maturity. A chrysalis.
Sexually developed female bee. The mother to all bees in the colony.
Queen cell: a special cell of extended length in which queen develops.
Queen cup: The beginnings of a queen cell
in which the queen may lay a fertile egg to start the rearing of another queen, usually prior to swarming.
Queen excluder: Device usually made of wood and wire, expanded
mesh or plasticwith
openings to permit worker bees to pass through but excluding queens and drones. Used to restrict the queen to certain parts of the hive.
Queenright: A colony of bees with a properly functioning queen.
Queen substance: Queen Mandibular Pheromone, or QMP, is a honey bee pheromone produced by the queen and fed to her attendants who share it with the rest of the colony that gives the colony the sense of being queenright . Pheromone material
transmitted throughout the colony by workers.
Quilt : A method for the absorbtion of condensation in the top of a warre hive. 100 mm high (eke) ‘quilt’ boxed with wood, filled with
straw, sawdust, wood shavings etc., retained underneath with permeable strong cloth or nylon mesh.
Race: Populations of bees, originally geographically isolated and somewhat adapted to specific regional conditions.
Ripening: Process whereby bees evaporate moisture from nectar and convert its sucrose to dextrose (glucose) and levulose (fructose), thus changing nectar into honey.
Rendering wax: Melting old
combs and wax cappings and removing refuse to partially refine the beeswax.
Requeen: To replace a queen in a hive. Often to replace an old queen with a young one.
Robbing: Bees steal
honey from other hives. A common problem when nectar is not available in the field.
Ropiness: Often described when testing for AFB. Dead bee larva in a cell having the characteristic of sticky elasticity and stringing
out when stirred and stretched with a matchstick.
Royal jelly: Glandular secretion of young worker bees used to feed the queen and young brood.
Sac-brood: A fairly common virus disease
of larvae, usually nonfatal to the colony.
Scale: Often related to a symptom of AFB . A dehydrated, dead larva shrunken to an elongated thin, flat dark chip at the bottom of a cell.
bees: Worker bees searching for nectar or other needs including suitable location for a swarm to nest.
Sealed brood: Cells of larvae/pupae sealed with a wax cap after 9th day.
The transfer of pollen from the anther to the stigma of the same flower or to flowers of the same plant or other plants of identical genetic material such as some apple varieties, clones of wild blueberries, etc. (See autopollination).
Septicemia: Usually minor disease of adult bees caused by Pseudomonas apiseptica. Septicemia is a bacterial disease of adult honey bees that is rarely encountered; it is caused by Pseudomonas apiseptica Burnside. The bacteria, by some unknown
method, make their way to the hemolymph, multiply rapidly, and ultimately cause the death of the host.Bees that die from septicemia appear to have no connective tissues and dismember easily. The legs, wings, head, thorax, and abdomen separate-even by the slightest
SHB: Small Hive Beetle (Aethina tumida). Not yet infecting colonies in the UK, but is now causing problems in Northern France. Beekeepers in southern England must be observant for any arrival of this pest. When
noticed, immediate notification to FERA must be made. The apiary should be placed into voluntary isolation by the beekeeper. The small hive beetle can be a destructive pest of honey bee colonies, causing damage to comb, stored honey and pollen. If a beetle
infestation is sufficiently heavy, they may cause bees to abandon their hive. The beetles can also be a pest of stored combs, and honey (in the comb) awaiting extraction. Beetle larvae may tunnel through combs of honey, feeding and defecating, causing discoloration
and fermentation of the honey.
Skep: A beehive, usually of straw and dome-shaped, that lacks movable frames.
Slatted Bottom Rack: A ventilation board that fits between the bottom hive
body and the bottom board (Langstroth Hive). It provides cluster space for bees, allows air circulation without allowing a direct draft on the brood, and helps prevent swarming.
Slum-gum: A dark dirty residue, consisting
of brood cocoons and old pollen, which is left after wax is rendered from old brood frames by the beekeeper.
Smoker: Device used to blow smoke on bees to calm them down. Said to cause the bees to believe there is a fire
which could threaten their survival so they rush away to gorge on honey as emergency stores in case they have to abandon the hive.
Social insects: Insects which live in a family society, with parents and offspring sharing
a common dwelling place and exhibiting some degree of mutual cooperation; e.g., honey bees, ants, termites.
Solar wax melter: Glass-covered box in which the temperature rises by the sun’s rays and melts wax combs
and cappings. The wax is recovered in cake form.
Spermatheca: Small saclike organ in the queen in which sperms are stored.
Spermatoza: Male reproductive cells produced by the drone
Spiracles: External openings of the tracheae through which bees breathe.
Stamen: Male part of flower on which pollen-producing anthers are borne.
Modified ovipositor of female Hymenoptera developed into organ of defence.
Sucrose: The main solid ingredient of nectar before inversion into other sugars.
Super: A wooden box with
frames containing foundation or drawn comb in which honey is to be stored by the bees. Named for its superior position above the brood nest. The same type of box is referred to as a hive body when it is situated below the honey supers and is intended to be
used for extra brood rearing space and storage. This configuration is often called a brood and half A queen excluder is situated between this box and the super above it.
Supersedure: The replacement of a weak or old queen
in a colony by a daughter queen – a natural occurrence.
Supersisters: Queens or worker bees produced by a single queen and sired by identical sperm from a single drone (subfamily).
honey: A term generally used to indicate an excess amount of honey above that amount needed by the bees to survive the winter. This surplus is usually removed by the beekeeper.
Swarm: Natural division of a colony of bees
for propagation of the species. I was native to
Tellian bee: From which it is believed that all other strains of bees evolved. It was originally situated in northwest Africa and
spread northwards as the last Ice Age ended.
Thorax: Middle part of bee.
Tracheae: Breathing tubes of insects.
Tracheal mite: (See Acarapis woodi)
Trophallaxis: the mutual mouth to mouth exchange of regurgitated liquids between adult social insects or between them and their larvae.
U to W
Uncapping knife: cold or
electrically heated knife used to remove honey cell caps so honey can be extracted.
Unite: Combine one colony with another. A common method is the ‘newspaper method’.
brood: Brood in egg and larval stages only.
Varroa destructor: An external parasitic mite that attacks honey bees .
Virgin queen: Unmated queen.
split: Frames with eggs and worker bees are removed from a queenright hive and installed into an empty brood chamber or nuc. The bees should create a queen cell out of a suitable egg. Once the queen hatches, successfully mates and returns to the hive, the
hive will itself be queenright. Another option is to remove one complete brood chamber from a hive that has newly laid eggs in it, including bees, and move to a new location a minimum of three miles / 5km away for the start of a new colony.
Warre: Warre hives have a simple hive box with no frames. The bees draw down their own comb from top bars affixed to each box.
Wax glands: Glands
on underside of bee abdomen from which wax is secreted after the bee has been gorged with honey.
Wax moth: Lepidopterous insect whose larvae destroy wax combs.
Winter cluster: Closely
packed colony of bees in winter.
Wired foundation: Foundation with strengthening wires embedded in it.
Wired frames: Frames with wires holding sheets of foundation in place.
Worker bee: Sexually undeveloped female bee.
Worker comb: Honeycomb with about 25 cells per square inch/27mm sq.