Journal of
Agricultural Extension and Rural Development

  • Abbreviation: J. Agric. Ext. Rural Dev
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2170
  • DOI: 10.5897/JAERD
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 489

Full Length Research Paper

Assessment of honeybee enemies (pests and predators) in Bale zone, southeastern Ethiopia

Bekele Tesfaye
  • Bekele Tesfaye
  • Oromia Agricultural Research Institute (OARI), Sinana Agricultural Research Center (SARC), P. O. Box: 208, Bales-Robe, Ethiopia.
  • Google Scholar
Genet Dadi
  • Genet Dadi
  • Oromia Agricultural Research Institute (OARI), Sinana Agricultural Research Center (SARC), P. O. Box: 208, Bales-Robe, Ethiopia.
  • Google Scholar
Temaro Gelgelu
  • Temaro Gelgelu
  • Oromia Agricultural Research Institute (OARI), Sinana Agricultural Research Center (SARC), P. O. Box: 208, Bales-Robe, Ethiopia.
  • Google Scholar


  •  Received: 14 November 2016
  •  Accepted: 17 January 2017
  •  Published: 30 April 2017

Abstract

Among all constraints of beekeeping, natural bee enemies are known to cause great damage to the life and product of honeybees by causing disappearance and migration. A study was conducted in Bale from July, 2010 to June, 2012 in six districts with the objective of assessing the effect of natural bee enemies on the life of honeybees and their products. From each districts, 3 rural kebeles (RKs) and 10 beekeepers from each RKs were purposively selected and a total of 180 beekeeper participated. The selected beekeepers were interviewed using pre-tested structured questioners and single-visit-multiple formal survey method to collect the data. The collected data were analyzed using SPSS version 20 software and descriptive analysis method. Majority (96.86%) of the respondents in the study area followed traditional production system but only few beekeepers started transitional (0.88) and modern (2.26) beekeeping production system. In the study area, honeybees’ enemies, agro-chemicals, lack of knowledge to manage bees and bee products, lack of bee colonies and bees poisoning from plants were identified as major beekeeping constraints. Respondents were asked to identify major honeybee pests and predators. Based on the result of this study, the existence of pests and predators were a major challenge to the honeybees and beekeepers in the study area. In all surveyed areas, the beekeepers reported the presence of Honey badger, spider, bee-eating birds, bee lice, beetles, wasps, Death Head hawks moth Mice and lizards in order of their decreasing importance. Traditionally, the beekeepers used their own control mechanisms of protecting these pests and predators like application of ash under the stand of the hive, hanging hives by rope on long trees, cleaning around the apiary site, using dog for large predators like honey badger, fencing their apiary site and mechanical like killing of the predators and pests, etc. About 72.6% of the respondents reported that honey production trend in the area decreased and 25.1 and 2.2% reported increasing and unchanged trend of production system, respectively. Despite the challenges of beekeeping, it is realized that there is potential of beekeeping in Bale, though the production system is traditional and there is an opportunity of improving the situation since there is plenty of beekeeping resources.

 

Key words: Enemies, honeybee, pests and predators, Bale zone.