You can now buy honey produced on campus at Marianopolis and support a good cause.
With the start of fall just a few days away, students in the Environmental Studies Certificate harvested and extracted honey from the College apiary.
The event was organized by Biology Professor Michele Saumier, who serves as the Environmental Studies Certificate coordinator and oversees environmental stewardship initiatives like the Green Classroom and Pollinator Project.
Professor Saumier also used the activity as an occasion to discuss ecotoxicology and parasitology issues relevant to beekeeping and extraction practices.
The day before the extraction, Professor Saumier installed a bee escape board to remove the bees from the frame boxes inside the hive. The escape board allows bees to retreat into their hive but creates a maze that prevents them from finding their way back to the frame boxes that contain the honeycombs.
After retrieving the frame boxes, students scraped and collected the wax caps from the honeycombs. These wax scrapings will be cleaned and used to make soap and lip balm later this fall.
With all the wax caps removed, students placed the frame boxes in the manually operated extraction drums to draw and filter the honey from the honeycombs. The entire process lasted several hours, with students working in shifts to complete all the different tasks.
Once students finished the manual extraction and filtering, the honey was poured into jars, labeled, boxed and delivered to the campus store and the Finance Office for sale. All proceeds from sales will be donated to The Marianopolis Millennium Foundation to support a new scholarship.
Initiatives like the apiary project create engaging opportunities for experiential learning about biology and the natural world. Marianopolis students in all programs of study can sign up for the Environmental Studies Certificate.