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  • Writer's pictureAndrew Brown

The Dancing Bees - A Visual Poem

In the tranquil countryside of Cornwall, amidst fields of wildflowers and whispers of sea breeze, resides Jo Widdicombe, a seasoned beekeeper with a passion for preserving the ancient art of apiculture. For over five decades, Jo has tended to his beloved bees, nurturing not only their hives but also their intricate dance of life. Through a serendipitous encounter, Jo stumbled upon a treasure hidden in the folds of time: the thought-extinct European Dark Honey Bee, Apis mellifera mellifera. Thus began a journey of rediscovery, recultivation, and reverence for nature's tiny dancers.

Rediscovering the European Dark Honey Bee

In an age where rapid urbanisation and industrialisation threaten biodiversity, Jo Widdicombe stands as a beacon of hope for the native dark honey bee. Through his keen observation and unwavering dedication, Jo unearthed the ancient lineage of these bees, once thought lost to history. With gentle care and meticulous attention, he recultivated them back into their native Cornwall, weaving a tapestry of resilience and revival in the heart of the countryside.

The Dance of Sustainability

As Jo tends to his buzzing companions, he is keenly aware of the fragile balance between humanity and nature. Through the lens of his apiary, Jo witnesses firsthand the consequences of unsustainable environmental practices, from habitat destruction to pesticide use. Yet, amidst the chaos, he finds solace in the harmonious rhythm of the bees—a reminder that we are all interconnected in the dance of life. For Jo, bees are not just pollinators; they are ambassadors of the common good, beckoning us to tread lightly upon the earth and cherish its wonders.

Passing Down the Torch

As the sun sets on another day in the apiary, Jo Widdicombe reflects on the legacy he hopes to leave behind. For him, it is not enough to simply tend to the bees; he must also pass down his extensive knowledge and wisdom to future generations of sustainable beekeepers. Through mentorship, education, and community engagement, Jo endeavours to inspire a new wave of stewards committed to safeguarding the native dark honey bee and the ecosystems it sustains.

In the gentle hum of the apiary, amidst the golden glow of the setting sun, Jo Widdicombe finds poetry in motion—the dance of the bees, a timeless ode to resilience, renewal, and reverence for nature. Through "The Dancing Bees - A Visual Poem," Jo invites us to join him in a journey of discovery, conservation, and celebration of life's intricate tapestry. Together, let us heed the call of the bees, for in their humble dance lies the promise of a brighter, more sustainable future for all.

This post is part of the B4 Project's initiative to prompt Saving Our Native Dark Honey Bee

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