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Entomology: UGA Honey Bee Program: About Us

Jennifer A. Berry

  • M.S., 2000, University of Georgia, Entomology
  • B.S., 1997, University of Georgia, Entomology

About Jennifer

Jennifer Berry lecturing at Brushy Mountain Bee Farm on how to keep our bees alive.For the past 17 years, Jennifer Berry has been the Apicultural Research Professional and Lab Manager for the University of Georgia Honey Bee Program. Her research objectives have focused on improving honey bee health, the sub-lethal effects of pesticides on beneficial insects and IPM techniques for varroa and small hive beetle control.

More recently, Jennifer has undertaken several ambitious campaigns to educate people from all walks of life. She’s volunteered in Central and South America to teach women and young teens the art of beekeeping in order to enhance their ability for better employment and hopefully improve their quality of life. Jennifer has also been instrumental in launching the Georgia Beekeeping Prison Program by certifying inmates through the University of Georgia Master Beekeeper Program. In little over a year, 5 prisons have been added to the fold and are now teaching beekeeping behind bars. Three classes have already been certified, with many more to come. Plus, the prison program is striving to become as self-sustaining as possible, with each prison responsible for supplying something to the mix: queens, bees and/or woodenware. And finally she has been dutifully educating the public about the importance of pollinators and other beneficial insects and how to encourage their populations.

Jennifer is a regular columnist for Bee Culture magazine and occasionally for other publications across the pond. She travels extensively to speak to local, state, national and international students, groups and beekeeping associations. On weekends and evenings, Jennifer operates Honey Pond Farm, a honey bee venture which strives on rearing healthy bees and selecting queens for varroa tolerance, brood production, gentleness, and longevity. Several times a year she sells nucleus colonies and teaches how to rear superior queens at her farm in Georgia.

M.S. thesis title and abstract:

Jennifer BerryEffects of comb age on honey bee colony growth, brood survivorship, and adult mortality

This research was designed to test the effects of comb age on honey bee colony growth, brood survivorship, and adult mortality. Experimental old combs were of an unknown age but were characteristically dark and heavy similar to combs one or more years old. New combs were produced just prior to the beginning of the experiment and never before had brood reared in them. Either old or new combs were installed into each of 21-24 nucleus colonies in each of three years of field study. On average, colonies with new comb had a higher area (cm2) of brood, area (cm2) of sealed brood, and weight (mg) of individual young bees. Brood survivorship was the only variable significantly higher in old comb. Laboratory assays suggested that mortality of adult bees was lower when adults were housed on comb of an age class similar to that in which they were reared as immatures.

Academic Publications:

  1. Berry, J.A. & K.S. Delaplane. 2000. Effects of top- versus bottom-supering on honey yield. American Bee Journal 140(5): 409-410 PDF file
  2. Berry, J.A. & K.S. Delaplane. 2001. Effects of comb age on honey bee colony growth and brood survivorship. Journal of Apicultural Research 40(1): 3-8 PDF file
  3. Ellis, J. D., Jr., K.S. Delaplane, C.S. Richards, R. Hepburn, J.A. Berry, & P.J. Elzen. 2004. Hygienic behavior of Cape and European Apis mellifera (Hymenoptera: Apidae) toward Aethina tumida (Coleoptera: Nitidulidae) eggs oviposited in sealed bee brood. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 97(4): 860-864 PDF file
  4. Delaplane, K.S., J.A. Berry, J.A. Skinner, J.P. Parkman, & W.M. Hood. 2005. Integrated pest management against Varroa destructor reduces colony mite levels and delays economic threshold. Journal of Apicultural Research 44(4): 117-122 PDF file
  5. Berry, J.A., W.A. Owens, & K.S. Delaplane. 2008. A test of a small cell foundation as an aid to Varroa control. Proceedings of American Bee Research Conference, Sacramento, California. American Bee Journal 148(6): 553
  6. Delaplane, K.S. & J.A. Berry. 2009. A test for sub-lethal effects of some commonly used hive chemicals. Proceedings of American Bee Research Conference, Gainesville, Florida. American Bee Journal 149(6): 586
  7. Berry, J.A., W.B. Owens, & K.S. Delaplane. 2010. Small-cell comb foundation does not impede Varroa mite population growth in honey bee colonies. Apidologie 41: 41-44 doi 10.1051/apido/2009049 PDF file
  8. Delaplane, K.S. and J.A. Berry. 2010. A test for sub-lethal effects of some commonly used hive chemicals, year two. Proceedings of American Bee Research Conference, Orlando, Florida. American Bee Journal 150(5): 498-499
  9. Berry, J.A., O. Afik, M.P. Nolan IV, and K.S. Delaplane. 2012. Revisiting powdered sugar for Varroa control on honey bees (Apis mellifera L). Journal of Apicultural Research 51(4): 367-368 DOI 10.3896/IBRA. PDF file
  10. Berry, J.A., W.M. Hood, S. Pietravalle, and K.S. Delaplane. 2013. Field-level sublethal effects of approved bee hive chemicals on honey bees (Apis mellifera L). PLoS ONE DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0076536 PDF file
  11. Distinguishing between feral and managed honey bees using stable carbon isotopes. Apidologie, 24-Feb-2014 PDF file

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