Marla Spivak is a honey bee researcher at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. Her work has covered a variety of subjects over the years including queen breeding and disease prevention and lately she has been working on the relationship of honey bees and propolis.
Propolis is simply a mixture of resins honey bees collect from a variety of plants. These resins protect these plants from diseases and pests that would otherwise harm them. She first became interested when she read that some properties of propolis had a positive effect on human HIV disease. Then she attended a meeting where she learned how ants collect these resins to use in their nests and she was hooked or should we say, propolis stuck with her… to her… to, everything.
Propolis has a definite antimicrobial effect on dangerous microbes in the hive and at the same time, manages to help maintain, even increase the positive microbiome in a honey bee’s gut and even their mouth parts. It doesn’t cure AFB or EFB, but is does help keep it in check in an infected colony.
Propolis in a beehive moves the needle, researchers feel. It is the foundation for honey bee health. Find out even more by listening to Marla Spivak explain the joys of propolis.
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Podcast music: Young Presidents, "Be Strong", Musicalman, "Epilogue"