Cameron Highlands
Honey Bee Farms Apiaries

There are various honey bee farms apiaries in Cameron Highlands, a small cottage industry producing honey. The honey bee farm grows an assortment of flowers as a source of food supply for bees to extract the nectar which the bees convert to honey. Visiting an apiary can be quite an educational experience as one can find out more about the life cycle of bees and how the honey is extracted from the beehive and health benefits of honey.

Amongst the various honey bee farms apiaries, Ee Feng Gu honey bee farm is considered the more established and should be well worth a visit.

Ee Feng Gu honey bee farm mascot

Ee Feng Gu Honey Bee Farm

Located a little further downhill from the junction that goes to Sg Palas Boh Tea Estate, is the Ee Feng Gu honey bee farm apiaries. Ee Feng Gu Farm has been around for a long time, long enough that three generation of family members had tended the honey bee farm. Their experience in honey bee farming is very well known locally and internationally and many honey bee farmers have come to visit them to learn and exchange ideas about honey bee farming. Their renown and success did come with a price through years of struggles and hardship.

Visitors are certainly welcomed to visit the honey bee farm, unlike some of the other sights attraction, there is no entrance fee charged. If you feel compelled, you could purchase some of their honey and pollen products.

Honey bee hives box amidst the flowers in Cameron Highlands

Visiting the farm, one would realize that the bees are not confined but are freely roaming around the sanctuary flying from flower to flower collecting nectar. Bees usually do not simply sting anybody unless provoked. So don't go do something foolish and spoil your wonderful holiday!

The workers at the farm are very knowledgeable and visitors are welcome to ask any question about the bees and honey extraction process.

Opens daily 8am - 7pm
Free entrance
Website: http://www.eefenggu.com

Honey Bee Facts

Honey bees are social insects with division of labours in a bee colony, consisting of the queen bee, drones and worker bees. The queen bee is the largest bee in the colony and all it does is lay eggs everyday. The queen lays about 3,000 eggs per day its entire life after mating once with approximately 18 drones. The drones are stout bees and has no stingers. They do not do anything except mate with a potential queen bee. In times of food shortage, they get kicked out of the hive! Busy as a bee, so the saying goes, the worker bees are the smallest bees in the colony. They are actually sexually undeveloped females. A bee hive colony can have up to 60,000 worker bees. Worker bees does all the job from collecting nectar, tending and feeding the queen and larvae, guards the hive against intruders, and even cools the hive by fanning their wings. Lifespan of a worker bee is about 28 to 35 days.

First Aid for Bee Stings

Usually bees do not sting anybody and they only do so in self defense where they are provoked in some ways or their hives has been intruded upon. Stings are painful and is only life threatening if a person has an allergic reaction to it.

Here are some ways to reduce the risk of being stung

  1. Wear light-colored, smooth-finished clothing.
  2. Avoid perfumed soaps, shampoos, deodorants. Don't wear cologne or perfume. Avoid bananas and banana-scented toiletries.
  3. Wear clean clothing and bathe daily. Sweat angers bees.
  4. Cover the body as much as possible with clothing.
  5. Avoid flowering plants.
  6. Check for new nests during the warmer hours of the day. Bees are very active then.
  7. Keep areas clean. Social wasps thrive in places where humans discard food, so clean up picnic tables, grills and other outdoor eating areas.
  8. If a single stinging insect is flying around, remain still or lie face down on the ground. The face is the most likely place for a bee or wasp to sting. Swinging or swatting at an insect may cause it to sting.
  9. If you are attacked by several stinging insects at the same time, run to get away from them. Bees release a chemical when they sting. This alerts other bees to the intruder. More bees often follow. Go indoors or jump into water. Outdoors, a shaded area is better than an open area to get away from the insects.
  10. If a bee comes inside your vehicle, stop the car slowly, and open all the windows.

Source: National AG Safety Database

What to do if a Person is Stung

Up close with honey bees

Remove the stinger that was left by the bee immediately as it will continue to pump venom into the skin. The current conventional method is to remove the stinger is to scrape it off such as using the fingernail to avoid squeezing additional venom into the skin. However this method may be slow and will result in more venom being pumped into the skin. Recent studies suggest that pulling it out immediately by any means without concern regarding the method of removal is the better first aid procedure as this minimizes the amount of venom that is pumped in.

Source: Dept of Entomology, University of California.

Make sure the victim does not have an allergic reaction which will require immediate hospitalization. If possible wash the sting site with soap and water and apply ice to reduce swelling. Do not scratch the sting as it will cause the site to swell and increase the chance of infection.

22-March-2006

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