Tag Archives: on ecology

traditional beekeeping in the low countries

Flanders 1500’s. The hives were tall straw skeps with a flight entrance well above the base. The skeps were housed in a thatched shelter near the farm buildings. Pigs and poultry were kept near the hives. Women, children and men were involved in beekeeping activities and all wore protective clothing. Similar hives were used up to the 1900’s. (The world history of beekeeping, by Eva Crane).

A Flemish beekeeping scene, by Pieter Breughel the Elder, 1565.
It has been suggested that the men might be stealing the hives.

Meanwhile, wintertime 2010 on a Brussels rooftop garden.
Let’s hope the colonies survive!

tipping point – art/science/climate change conference

BRUSSELS – 25th and 26th JANUARY 2010
This pan European event is a collaboration between TippingPoint, the British Council, the European Commission, the European Union National Institutes for Culture (EUNIC), the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) and the Kaaitheatre Theater in Brussels. A major European gathering of individuals from across the cultural sector, including artists from all art forms, together with a broad range of scientists involved in the world of climate science will take place, symbolically, at the heart of the European institutions, in the building of the EESC in the centre of Brussels. A number of key climate change policy makers will also take part.

TippingPoint aims to ‘harness the power of the imagination to help stabilise the climate’. We offer a range of activities centred on exposing creative artists to the enormous challenges of climate change; at the heart of this lies a series of meetings involving very high quality, intense dialogue between artists, scientists and others close to the heart of the issue. These encounters provide a chance to explore the broader cultural challenges precipitated by climate change.

Tipping Point or how to change the mentality of the world population? : conference report by Eva Peeters on the BAM-website ‘Kunst en Ecologie’

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colony collapse disorder

Colony collapse disorder (CCD) or sometimes honey bee depopulation syndrome (HBDS) is a phenomenon in which worker bees from a beehive or European honey bee colony abruptly disappear. While such disappearances have occurred throughout the history of apiculture, the term colony collapse disorder was first applied to a drastic rise in the number of disappearances of Western honey bee colonies in North America in late 2006. Colony collapse is economically significant because many agricultural crops worldwide are pollinated by bees. European beekeepers observed similar phenomena in Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Greece, Italy, Portugal, and Spain, and initial reports have also come in from Switzerland and Germany, albeit to a lesser degree while the Northern Ireland Assembly receives reports of a decline greater than 50%. Possible cases of CCD have also been reported in Taiwan since April 2007.
The cause or causes of the syndrome are not yet fully understood, although many authorities attribute the problem to biotic factors such as Varroa mites and insect diseases (i.e., pathogens including Nosema apis and Israel acute paralysis virus). Other proposed causes include environmental change-related stresses, malnutrition and pesticides (e.g. neonicotinoids such as imidacloprid), and migratory beekeeping. More speculative possibilities have included both cell phone radiation and genetically modified (GM) crops with pest control characteristics, though experts say no evidence exists for either assertion. It has also been suggested that it may be due to a combination of many factors and that no single factor is the cause.