Develop climate smart bee-keeping technologies
In addition to producing honey, bees play an important role as pollinators of crops, pastures and trees, thus contributing to food security, environmental conservation and availability of carbon sink contributing to climate change adaptation. It is estimated that Kenya produces about 11,000 metric tonnes of honey and 1-3 tonnes of beeswax annually. This is about 20% of country’s potential and the low production is attributed to lack of appropriate technologies, poor beekeeping practices, and low uptake of improved technologies, poor policy guidelines and marketing skills. Many of the arid and semi-arid counties of Kenya have huge potential for the production of hive products. However existing beekeeping technologies are not suitable in a changing climate of increased temperatures and low moisture situations. Superiority of log hive in beekeeping among pastoral communities is well established and continues to prevail with changing climatic conditions in arid and semi-raid lands. Recent survey among some beekeeping communities in Baringo County (e.g. Arabel area) showed that all Langstroth and Kenya Top bar hives were empty. Emerging honey pests and diseases are another challenge. Thus productivity of honey is low, making Kenya unable to meet domestic and export demand. Activities for climate smart bee-keeping technologies will be undertaken by ICIPE as Coapplicant in this Action. Focus will be on:
- Develop and validate new hive innovations to enhance occupancy and increase yield
- Develop strategies for conservation of threatened bee habitats
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