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My Honeybees and A Research Delight in San Diego (May 10,2012)

by Asst. Prof. Dr. Guntima Suwannapong, 2011 Thai Visiting Scholar Program from Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Burapha University hosted by Section of Ecology, Behavior and Evolution, Division of Biological Science, University of California at San Diego.

I returned to Thailand in early March 2012 after my 6 month research stay in the US but my experience at the University of California, San Diego as a Fulbright visiting scholar is still vivid in my memory. I have learned a great deal from this Program, both to complete my research in honeybee communication and a life lesson, as well as a chance to socialize with American people while learning their culture and way of life.



In terms of honeybee research, I learned how to train honeybees to find the location where we want to treat them by means of chemical communication (pheromone). For this visit, I was very impressed to learn how to paint honeybees while they forage on sucrose solution we provided them at the feeder station. We moved the sucrose farther away from their hive to where we want to do our experiments, and the bees followed. The experiments were about the function of the mandibular gland pheromones of the European honeybee, Apis mellifera.


Apart from my research, I also had a chance to give lecture to students of UCSD and teach them how to set up experiments on honeybee health, focusing on Nosemosis, the disease caused by Nosema spp. that causes a honeybee stomach disorder and eventually death after an infection with high enough doses. Our main research that a group of four students of James Neih’s lab and I conducted was an effect of Nosema ceranae on honeybee larvae development and queen production. We received good results for both research projects.


For my general life experience, I stayed at international house of UCSD or Asante House which was very comfortable and had a giant living room that overlooked the La Jolla beach. I had a roommate who is a Korean nurse. Even though we did not have much free time together, I got a chance to show my Thai cooking that impressed my roommate much. Sometimes we went out for Korean food and shared our experience about life in our hometown, culture, and working experience in the US.  I have also socialized with many multicultural scholars and made many new friends who supported both of my research and campus life. During my free time, I spent my weekly activities like teaching Thai cooking to American friends and also learn how to cook American food from them. I also enjoyed strolling along several beautiful beaches in San Diego with them. The farewell ceremony at the end of my stay was really impressive and we all were very happy and had a wonderful time, even for the last time together. My overall experience in the US at UCSD was amazing. I was so fortunate to be surrounded in the academic environment with beautiful nature and friendly people.


I would like to extend my sincere thanks to Fulbright Thailand and to the people in charge of Fulbright both in Thailand and the US as a grant provider and a great supporter that gave me an opportunity to come over having this wonderful experience in the US.

ข้อเขียนทั้งภาษาไทยและภาษาอังกฤษทุกเรื่องที่นำเสนอโดยมูลนิธิการศึกษาไทย-อเมริกัน (ฟุลไบรท์) ผู้สนใจสามารถจะนำไปใช้ประโยชน์ต่อการเรียนการสอนและกิจกรรมทางการศึกษาที่เกี่ยวข้องได้โดยขอความกรุณาอ้างอิงถึงแหล่งที่มาให้ชัดเจนด้วย


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