Author Archives: Ron Miksha

About Ron Miksha

Ron Miksha is a bee ecologist working at the University of Calgary. He is also a geophysicist and does a bit of science writing and blogging. Ron has worked as a radio broadcaster, a beekeeper, and Earth scientist. (Ask him about seismic waves.) He's based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Ron has written two books, dozens of magazine and journal articles, and complements his first book, Bad Beekeeping, with the blog at badbeekeepingblog.com. Ron wrote his most recent book, The Mountain Mystery, for everyone who has looked at a mountain and wondered what miracles of nature set it upon the landscape. For more about Ron, including some cool pictures taken when he was a teenager, please check Ron's site: miksha.com.

EO Wilson, 92, has left the lab

The entire Earth was Ed Wilson’s lab. When his death was announced on Monday, I knew that I wanted to write a few words words in his honour, but I also knew that this would be a difficult task. One … Continue reading

Posted in Bee Biology, Books, Culture, or lack thereof, Ecology, History, People, Science | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

Langstroth’s Christmas Present

I’ve been posting this piece every Christmas for a while. If you’ve read it before, read it again. Or not. Christmas Day is L.L. Langstroth’s birthday. He’d be 211 years old, if he hadn’t been struck down in his 85th … Continue reading

Posted in Beekeeping, Books, History, Hives and Combs, People, Tools and Gadgets | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Bees in the Snow

New beekeepers (and some of us old ones) worry when we see ‘lots’ of bees in the snow during winter. The black dots (above) are frozen stiffs – bees that left their hive and didn’t make it back. To me, … Continue reading

Posted in Beekeeping | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

The Bees are Fine

My favourite line from one of my favourite movies was spoken by Peter Fonda, playing Ulee Jackson in a film about a Florida beekeeper. When Ulee visits his son, who is in prison for robbery, the son asks about the … Continue reading

Posted in Beekeeping, Commercial Beekeeping, Honey, Movies | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

Look at me! I’m green!

A Calgary oil company’s office tower has a bee just around the corner. This beautiful wall-poster points the way to the bee. Yes, ‘the bee’ according to the sign. I would be quite embarrassed if I had allowed such a … Continue reading

Posted in Bee Yards, Ecology, Save the Bees | Tagged , | 5 Comments

Bees Kill Endangered Penguins

Well, this isn’t a nice story. Apparently 63 endangered African penguins were stung to death by honey bees last week. My first thought, of course, was that the culprit was one of the more vicious African honey bees – Apis … Continue reading

Posted in Ecology, Killer Bees, Stings, Strange, Odd Stuff | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Free International Symposium

Global Trends in Beekeeping. This two-day symposium is being held in Moscow. Registration is free, but if you are in the western hemisphere, be prepared for a couple of very early mornings. (The Congress begins at 10am, Moscow; 3am in … Continue reading

Posted in Apitherapy, Beekeeping, Culture, or lack thereof | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Waxing in the Waning Days of Summer

Our summer is drawing to a close. After record-breaking heat, we’re now getting seasonal temperatures (though no frost yet, which is unusual). Fortunately, we are having some much-needed rain. In the heat of summer, I set up our solar wax … Continue reading

Posted in Beekeeping, Hive Products, Tools and Gadgets | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Blue and Green in the Flower Patch

Good scientists do their best to remove bias from their observations and experiments. Statistical methods such as blocking, double-blind trials, use of appropriate controls, and randomization are among their key tools. Results are suspect when hypotheses are designed after data … Continue reading

Posted in Ecology, Science | Tagged , | 2 Comments

September Bears

Our part of the world (Calgary, Alberta, Canada) has been home to black bears and grizzlies for about ten-thousand years. In recent days, they’ve mostly resided in the zoo and probably as household pets in a few basements – though … Continue reading

Posted in Bee Yards, Beekeeping, Diseases and Pests | Tagged , , | 7 Comments