Just a short post today, and though it’s about genetics and botany, bees (my usual blog subject) are mentioned only indirectly. It’s the 155th anniversary of the birth of Carrie Derick – one of the world’s first geneticists. Derick was the first female professor in a Canadian university and the founder of McGill University’s renowned genetics department. I wouldn’t know any of this, except Google.ca used the image above as today’s search doodle.
Ms Derick was born January 14, 1862, in rural Quebec and studied at McGill and Bonn University. In her era, women had just been granted the right to a university education. She was 50 in 1912 when she finally was recognized as a professor at her university, though she’d been working as one for twenty years. By then, her research had earned her recognition as a scientist. She is known for her book Notes on the Development of the Holdfasts of Certain Florideae, written when she was 37, which was among the first studies of the effects of “light, temperature, or the density of the surrounding medium, and in adaptation to vegetative reproduction” on botanical growth and reproduction.
Carrie Derick was teaching school in her hometown at age 15. She moved to Montreal to continue teaching and (in 1887) to enter McGill University (three years after women were first allowed to enroll). She skipped first year, jumping directly into her second year of studies which she completed with a 94% average, the top mark at the university that year. She began teaching (demonstrating, they called it, as McGill’s first female botany instructor). It was 30 years before she became a professor.
Derick earned her PhD at Bonn University (1901-1905), completing her course work and thesis, but was granted neither the title Doctor nor the PhD she’d earned. Such degrees were not granted to women at that school at that time. She returned to McGill in Montreal, taught botany and genetics, and ran the new genetics department. In her fifties, still not recognized as a professor, she wrote to the university’s principal for her overdue promotion. She was granted professorship in 1912 – at a pay one-third of what her male colleagues were given. She continued to run her department and work as a professor until her retirement, 17 years later.
As a direct result of Derick’s pioneering work, women scientists are almost as numerous as males today – and almost paid as well, too. In our own area of interest, the fortitude and courage of Carrie Derick helped us receive the enormous contributions of the women of entomology who followed – including Eva Crane, Martha Spivak, Tammy Horn, Meghan Milbrath, Christina Grozinger, Gloria D Degrandi-Hoffman, Cath Keay, Susan Cobey, Michelle Flenniken, Diana Sammataro, and a hundred others. A huge amount of what we know about bees (and how we care for them) would be missing without the contributions of these and many other women who chose to enter the world of the honey bee.
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Beekeeping can be a full time profession or a simple hobby. Yet, more often than not, what began as a hobby would become a profession. But you cannot merely determine and tell yourself that you will begin to do beekeeping. Before starting on any hobby or profession, you need to have satisfactory knowledge and comprehension on the field that you’re going to enter. Then it is about time to indulge yourself, if you really have been putting off your curiosity about beekeeping for quite a long time. Bee farming may seem easy; by learning the basic beekeeping lessons, you can be got away to a good start.
What does a beekeeper have to know?
You should have total interest on beekeeping to begin at the right foot. You must spend time taking care of your own colonies of bees. You should have also agreed to share your home space. There are possible dangers in beekeeping that can harm not only you but your family as well. Your focus is not just to build an income by selling honey; a great beekeeper should have a keen interest and passion in rearing bees.
An apiarist should know the right place for the beehives. The place must have sufficient sources of nectar for the bees to get. You need to make sure beekeeping is allowed in your town if you decide to set your beehives at your backyard. There are several places restricted to beekeeping; you need to get permission concerning this.
Beekeepers must know whether beekeeping supplies are offered in the region where the beehives are situated. You may never know when you must go to a neighborhood beekeeping store; it’s best that a nearby beekeeping shop is accessible.
Equipment and protective tools will also be very important to beekeepers to understand. Beekeepers are prone to bee stings; the ensemble that is proper must be worn during beekeeping sessions. This will reduce the chances of being stung by your bees. Understand the right type of suit to pick to keep you from any possible danger in beekeeping.
If you are unable to harvest honey from your bees all the beekeeping efforts would be futile. A beekeeper should know the approaches in collecting the honey from your comb; beeswax is also part of the returns in beekeeping.