Twice a year high in the Himalayan foothills of central Nepal teams of men gather around cliffs that are home to the world’s largest honeybee (Apis laboriosa). As
they have for generations, the men come to harvest the Himalayan cliff bee’s honey. The harvest ritual, which varies slightly from community to community, begins with a prayer and sacrifice of flowers, fruits, and rice. Then a fire is lit at the base of the cliff to smoke the bees from their honeycombs. In one way the wild honey production supports for the local economy on the other the unsustainable bee harvesting will damage the prestine mountain ecosystem, caution sceintists. However, the prospects of bee tourism may balance ecosystem with local economic incentive.
By John Roach
for National Geographic Newssee detail>>