Bees in Cuba


During a trip to Cuba with my family December 27 to January 3, I spent some time trying to find beehives and beekeepers. I was partially successful: The accompanying photo shows me in front of a collection of hives on the road to Las Terrazas, a pioneer eco-town (now more of a tourist town) about one hour outside of Havana. We didn’t see any beekeepers, although a sign near one of the hives suggested that they are the property of the military. And during a visit to Havana’s Colon Cemetery — one of the largest in the Americas, filled with beautiful Gothic and Neoclassical memorials as well as interesting legends about some famous inhabitants — I had a private moment with a few honeybees. They were busy pollinating a collection of flowers left at a memorial dedicated to a 13-year-old girl and her baby, buried together in an elaborate tomb constructed by the girl’s husband. The bees looked smaller than the ones I am used to seeing in the U.S. but it could have just been my imagination. In any case, it was a nice moment.

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