Salt Lake City real estate businessman and beekeeper Maurice Cobo has always nurtured a love of the honeybee and prides himself on the natural methodology he employs in taking care of his bees. Even with his healthy beekeeping methods, the infamous Colony Collapse Disorder(CCD) has caught up with Cobo.
How did you get into beekeeping?
One day when I had the opportunity, I purchased my first beehive. I have always respected and admired nature in all its forms, but bees have always intrigued me. They are fascinating little creatures.
What do you like/dislike about keeping bees?
My favorite part of beekeeping is when I open the hives in the summer and the bees buzz all around my face and ears where I can hear them and appreciate them the most. I do not wear any protective gear. I like them real close to me.
What is colony collapse disorder?
Is related to a combination of viruses and bacteria attacking the bees at once. A type of mite called the Varroa mite helps spread these viruses and bacteria throughout the hive.
How do you help your bees fight CCD?
Using essential oils either kills or helps keep the viruses and bacteria down to a minimum by killing Varroa and Tracheal mites. When I had time to regularly fog my bees, I hardly lost any.
Is there anything nonbeekeepers can do to fight colony collapse?
Yes. People fumigating plants, grass, etc., in the middle of the day without any concern to the eco-system can kill everything—beneficial insects as well as harmful ones. There are laws against fumigating during the day, but they only apply to licensed fumigators and not the owners of crops or orchards.